Three Elkhart County cities have committed to enforcing the county’s COVID-19 protocols. The mayors of Elkhart, Goshen and Nappanee will each bring an ordinance to their city councils next week.
The ordinances will recognize and support the county health department’s COVID-19 orders, which limit gathering sizes and mandate face masks, among other things. They will also support the County Commissioners’ ordinance that establishes fines for violating those health orders.
If passed by the city councils, the ordinances will allow Mayors Roberson, Stutsman and Jenkins to create enforcement teams that will implement the county’s protocols within Elkhart, Goshen and Nappanee, respectively.
The Elkhart County Sheriff’s Office will not be part of those enforcement teams. Sheriff Jeff Siegel expressed concern in a Dec. 3 Facebook post.
“Enforcement of this ordinance will be left to the officials who are charged with its enforcement," Siegel wrote. "My officers will not take part in the direct enforcement of the ordinance.”
The sheriff added that he hopes citizens will take individual action to follow the safety protocols and protect themselves and each other.
The Elkhart, Goshen and Nappanee city councils will all meet on Monday, Dec. 7, to vote on their ordinances.
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