Oklahoma City officials to consider face mask ordinance

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Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt is urging community members to wear face masks to push back the continuing increase of COVID-19 in Oklahoma.

OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt says he and fellow city leaders will consider enacting a public face mask policy for the city.

Holt took to Twitter on Friday to announce that the Oklahoma City City Council will have a special joint meeting with Oklahoma City-County Health Department officials on Thursday, July 16.

“At that meeting, the nine members of Council will hear the recommendations of OCCHD regarding a mask ordinance (and other aspects of mitigation response),” Holt said. “The Council will then be able to act on those recommendations.”

The regularly scheduled City Council meeting will be on Tuesday, July 21.

Holt said he and Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum have worked to closely coordinate their respective mitigation responses to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Today, Mayor Bynum has announced that his City Council has been asked to consider a mask ordinance as early as Wednesday,” Holt said.

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Stillwater Mayor Will Joyce asks a community member to put his face mask back on during a meeting in which the City Council passed a public face mask ordinance. The community member had removed his face mask in defiance to the ordinance.

Two Oklahoma cities, Norman – the home of the University of Oklahoma – and Stillwater – the home of Oklahoma State University – recently passed ordinances mandating the wearing of face masks or facial coverings in public.

Gov. Stitt said during a news conference on Thursday that he will not enact a statewide face mask mandate, and that while he doesn’t feel comfortable with such mandates, he will not stand in the way of local municipalities that do enact face mask mandates.

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Gov. Kevin Stitt said he’s not going to mandate wearing face masks across the state. He also said he will not oppose municipalities that do enact a public face mask mandate.

Holt encouraged community members who have an opinion about a mask ordinance in Oklahoma City to reach out to their ward’s City Council member before Thursday’s meeting.

“Ultimately, there are nine elected officials and in our form of government, I am just one of those nine votes. If you have opinions regarding a mask ordinance or other mitigation responses, I encourage you to reach out to your City Councilmember before Thursday’s meeting,” Holt said.

Holt concluded his announcement by calling upon community members to stay safe.

“In the meantime, wear your mask! And wash your hands and keep your distance. Be well, OKC,” Holt said.

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