Montgomery County mask mandate could return quickly, officials caution

The end of Montgomery County’s indoor mask mandate could be short lived after county health officials say the county has moved back to "Substantial Transmission"

In the past, county officials have said if that happens, even for a day, the mask mandate could be reinstated.

READ MORE: Montgomery County ends indoor mask mandate

Fox 5 spoke to Dr. James Bridgers Jr., the acting health officer for the county he says the case county per 100,000 people as of Friday was 50.6, which falls under the substantial transmission threshold. 

"One day, according to the board of health regulation, obligates me as the acting health officer to advise the council sitting as the board of health of that move to a higher community level transmission. " 

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Bridgers said by Saturday he’ll have a better idea about what could happen. 
If the data sticks, the Montgomery County Council can either reinstate the mandate or choose not to.  

Bridgers said if it is reinstated businesses will have a few days to readjust. 

"We give time for businesses to make the necessary adjustment," Bridgers said. " If the data goes back down into a moderate transmission category, I will notify the council accordingly and we will start the seven consecutive day review period again, but nothing will happen over the weekend where businesses will have to reinstate their mask mandate."

READ MORE: Montgomery County schools maintaining mask mandate

If the mandate comes back, then the county would need to have seven straight days of moderate transmission levels before masks can come off again. 

Bridgers says the CDC recommends wearing a mask indoors if COVID-19 cases are at a moderate or substantial transmission level.

The Montgomery County Council will meet Tuesday to discuss further.