Pott. County Commission to meet Friday to opt out of potential new statewide mask mandate

Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly is likely to come down with a new statewide mask order Thursday.
As has been the case during the pandemic, counties have the option to override the governor’s orders and opt out, but doing so requires a special meeting. County Counselor John Watt informed Pottawatomie County commissioners Monday of their options if they chose once again to opt out.
“If you want to set a special meeting, my recommendation would be to do it on Friday, because you have no idea what she’s going to do on Thursday, and when she’s going to be doing it,” he said.
Watt also noted that a special meeting could be held over the weekend or wait until Monday’s next commission meeting to weigh the mask mandate at that point.
“The only down side about waiting until Monday is that if she does issue a new mandate and you wait until Monday, that mandate will be in effect for a couple days, in the interim,” he said.
Commissioners agreed to meet Friday assuming Kelly makes good on her promise. Inaction until Monday would cause the mask order to be temporarily implemented through Easter weekend. Commission Chair Greg Riat.
“I will have no troubles opting out. I’d like to see us do a special meeting, whether by Zoom or together,” he said.
The meeting will be held at 3:30 p.m. Friday at emergency operations center in Wamego to accommodate health department officials’ schedules as they have vaccine clinics scheduled throughout the day.

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Brandon Peoples

KMAN News Director and host of In Focus. Contact Brandon at Brandon@1350KMAN.com

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