St. Joseph Co. Commission Votes For Fines For Face Mask Order Violations At Businesses
St. Joseph County businesses can now be fined up to $250 for failing to enforce mask-wearing among employees. The County Board of Commissioners voted 2-1 to pass the enforcement order Tuesday morning.
District 3 Commissioner Deb Fleming voted against the ordinance, citing her concern about what she says is a lack of scientific evidence that face masks effectively slow the spread of COVID-19. Many scientists and doctors claim otherwise.
According to the ordinance, the health department can only fine businesses, and only for failing to enforce mask-wearing among their employees. It can’t fine individuals who patronize the business, and businesses won’t be penalized for failing to enforce masking among their customers.
Additionally, all fines will be complaint-driven. The health department can only administer a fine if someone issues a complaint against a business.
The order will be in effect until April 2021.
If you appreciate this kind of journalism on your local NPR station, please support it by donating here.