Kansas counties could make mask mandate toothless

Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly's new statewide mask mandate, aimed at curbing the spread of COVID-19, could be erased if individual counties opt out of the order. Some have begun planning for just that.


State News

July 1, 2020 - 9:43 AM

MISSION, Kan. (AP) — Gov. Laura Kelly’s planned order requiring Kansas residents to wear masks to slow the spread of the coronavirus could be toothless in many parts of the state because counties can exempt themselves and even those that don’t might not enforce it.

Officials in some counties already were signaling Tuesday that they planned to opt out of Kelly’s mandate. The order, which Kelly is expected to issue Thursday ahead of it taking effect Friday, was to make masks mandatory in stores, restaurants and in any situation where social distancing of 6 feet cannot be maintained, including outside.

Wyandotte County, in the Kansas City area, and Douglas County, home to the main University of Kansas campus, already require masks.

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