Montgomery County Council to reconsider indoor mask mandate

The Montgomery County Council will consider amending its indoor mask mandate policy to prevent the mandate from being reinstated less than a week after it was lifted.

The council will vote Tuesday on the amended policy, which would require seven consecutive days of "substantial COVID-19 transmission" for the indoor mask mandate to be reinstated in public areas.

The vote comes after officials reported that the county's local COVID transmission had regressed to the point that the indoor mask mandate would be reinstated Wednesday, less than a week after the county lifted the mandate last Thursday.

The county's current policy dictates that the mask mandate can be reinstated after a single day of "substantial" COVID transmission.

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Now, the council is siding with many county residents who say that "A seven-day period (of transmission trends) provides a more accurate picture of public health trends related to the virus and eliminates quick swings back and forth on indoor masking requirements."

The county is deemed an area of substantial transmission if it reaches 50 to 99.99 total new cases per 100,000 persons in the past seven days or 8 to 9.99 percent test positivity during the past seven days.

The council will host an online public hearing and vote on the amended mask mandate policy at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday. Residents can sign up to speak during the Zoom meeting here.