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Edina, Rochester move forward on face mask requirements

The Mankato City Council approved a mask requirement on Monday, July 6 during an Emergency Meeting.
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Stock image of cloth face masks

EDINA, Minn. — Officials in the cities of Edina and Rochester are moving forward on face mask requirements.

Edina Mayor Jim Hovland signed an executive order on Wednesday requiring people to wear face masks inside public buildings across the city. The order will go into effect Monday, July 6.

The Edina City Council held a special meeting on Monday where they discussed the potential to require face masks. During the meeting, members agreed the requirement to wear face masks was a reasonable step to help protect the public during the pandemic.

Rochester announced on Monday a requirement that all people wear face masks inside any city-owned facilities and in any indoor setting not conducive to social distancing.

KTTC, an NBC affiliate in Rochester, reported the Rochester City Council voted 6-1 in favor of an Emergency Declaration that will require face coverings in all city facilities.

The Edina order would require face masks in city facilities, and indoors in places open to the public. It will not require masks outdoors unless social distancing is not possible. Bennerotte said it will likely not apply to industries that have already received guidance on masks from the state, like salons and restaurants.

The Mankato City Council voted on Monday, July 6 to put a mask requirement in place for anyone over the age of 12 years old.

The Centers for Disease Control says the spread of COVID-19 can be reduced when cloth face coverings are used along with other preventive measures, including social distancing, frequent handwashing, and cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces. 

During Monday's coronavirus briefing, when asked about the potential of the state mandating that the public wear masks, Gov. Tim Walz said "everything's on the table" and that topic is "coming up."

"I'm serious about talking about it," he said.

Both Minneapolis and St. Paul have orders in place that all people wear masks when inside city buildings and businesses.

On Monday, officials at the University of Minnesota announced they will be requiring all students, faculty, staff and visitors wear face masks in any enclosed or indoor space on university property, with certain exceptions.

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