Will Salt Lake County extend its mask mandate?

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SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – As COVID-19 numbers continue to trend downward, the state will lift its mask mandate Saturday. Local municipalities can choose to extend the mandate, and for counties like Salt Lake, final recommendations could come as early as Wednesday.

As the sun came out Tuesday afternoon, folks headed out to area parks, many wondering what life will look like after the state’s mask mandate lifts.

Salt Lake County resident Garrett Glass says, “I personally don’t like it. For my philosophy, I think it should be a buyer beware style where if you want to wear a mask and you think that it is a concern by all means do it. Wear a mask, but it’s wrong to be forcing people to do something that they might otherwise not be willing to do.”

Salt Lake County Executive Director Gary Edwards will be giving his recommendations to the county council Wednesday, and if he recommends a county mask mandate, the council will meet Friday to decide if one is necessary.

Ahead of his recommendations, County Mayor Jenny Wilson gave an executive order to continue mask-wearing in all county buildings.

“So for the near future, if you’re coming to a county facility you will be required to wear a mask,” says the Mayor.

ABC4 asked what the mayor’s plans were if the county health department does not issue a mask mandate recommendation.

She says, “In this case, I don’t have the authority that I had earlier this year to impose a mask mandate, so regardless of the decision I’m encouraging and asking, and really begging our residents to continue mask-wearing.”

Jonathan White of Salt Lake County says he believes everyone is doing their part to beat the virus and go back to normal.

” I think with vaccines, with all the progress that has been made in the last little bit, everybody is just trying to go back to normal,” he said. “If going back to normal is actually going to put people in the worst position in the end, or is going to cause a lot more damage, then that is something [where] masks should be mandated.”

Several businesses and companies are going to continue to require masks while folks use their services.

Students will need to continue to wear masks in schools and they will be required at events where there are more than 50 people.

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