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By Whitney Wyatt/The Red River Sun—
CHILDRESS – With the cases of COVID-19 over 20, residents in Childress County are now required to wear masks in public.
Childress County Judge Jay Mayden said the county’s exemption to Gov. Gregg Abbott’s mask mandate was cancelled at 6 a.m. Wednesday, July 22.
The governor issued an executive order requiring all Texans to wear a face covering over the nose and mouth in public spaces in counties with 20 or more positive COVID-19 cases, with few exceptions on July 2. But Mayden said this didn’t affect Childress County until last Wednesday.
He shared the 11 exceptions to wearing face masks:
- any person younger than 10 years of age
- any person with a medical condition or disability that prevents wearing a face covering
- any person while the person is consuming food or drink or is seated at a restaurant to eat or drink
- any person while the person is exercising outdoors or engaging in physical activities outdoors and maintaining a safe distance from other people not in the same household
- any person while the person is driving alone or with passengers who are part of the same household as the driver
- any person obtaining a service that requires temporary removal of the face covering for security surveillance, screening or need for specific access to the face, such as while visiting a bank or while obtaining personal care service involving the face, but only to the extent necessary for the temporary removal
- any person while the person is in a swimming pool, lake or similar body of water
- any person who is voting, assisting a voter, serving as a poll watcher or actively administering an election, but wearing a mask is strongly encouraged
- any person who is actively providing or obtaining access to religious worship, but wearing a mask is strongly encouraged
- any person while the person is giving a speech for broadcast or to an audience
- any person in a county that meets the requisite criteria promulgated by the Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM) regarding minimal cases of COVID-19 and whose county judge has affirmatively opted out of this face-covering requirement by filing with by filing with TDEM the required face-covering attestation form—provided, however, that wearing a face covering is highly recommended, and every county is strongly encouraged to follow these face-covering standards.
Following a verbal or written warning for a first-time violator of this face-covering requirement, a person’s second violation shall be punishable by a fine not to exceed $250, according to the governor’s executive order GA 29. Each subsequent violation shall be punishable by a fine not to exceed $250 per violation.