New law allows Kansas Citians to sound off on indoor mask requirement

Tracking Coronavirus

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A new Missouri law will allow Kansas Citians to tell a city committee what they think about extending the municipal mask mandate.

Kansas City, Missouri, is considering extending the indoor mask mandate until nearly the end of September because of surging numbers of COVID-19 patients filling area hospital beds.

The Transportation, Infrastructure and Operations Committee will hold a public hearing on the matter. Usually, that committee meets at City Hall.

But because Mayor Quinton Lucas expects there to be a lot of public discussion on the proposed extension, the mask ordinance will be considered separately during a special hearing Wednesday afternoon at 6 p.m. inside an auditorium at Kansas City’s Regional Police Academy, located in the Northland.

The state legislature passed a law requiring that restrictions like mask mandates only be imposed through ordinances enacted by elected representatives, instead of through public health orders, or what some have called “edicts,” which have been enforced during the last year.

Missouri’s attorney general is seeking to overturn Kansas City’s mask order in court, so the mayor is being careful to make sure the city is complying with the new state law.

Missouri law now says any public health restriction that’s going to be in place for more than a month must be enacted by a local law.

Across the state line in Johnson County, Kansas, there have been hours and hours of public testimony on face masks. Right now, there’s no countywide order, only a requirement that schools where kids up to 6th grade attend must require masks.

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