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The next steps for the Decatur city mask order

Updated: Apr. 5, 2021 at 10:56 PM CDT
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DECATUR, Ala. (WAFF) - The statewide mask mandate for Alabama expires Friday, April 9, but on Monday, it was all about the city of Decatur’s position on masking.

During their city council meeting, leaders talked about repealing the local mask order, but the vote on repealing the mask order for Decatur never happened as a unanimous vote for immediate consideration was required. In other words, there was a vote to vote and the first vote didn’t pass.

Council members are at odds.

“This mask ordinance was no different. It was done by the previous council for the safety of our community so I will not support this tonight,” said Council member Billy Jackson. “We buried a person on Saturday who was one of Decatur’s strongest citizens. 55-years-old and died of COVID-19.”

“The motion for immediate consideration fails four to one,” said Council President Jacob Ladner.

“I don’t believe you should be forced to do something like this, it’s wrong and it’s government overreach,” said Council member Hunter Pepper.

Council President Ladner said for him, the decision to mask up is a personal one.

“We have all been affected one way or the other. People understand what that risk is and we need to let them make that decision for themselves and their family,” he said.

Meanwhile, local business owner Carrington Kelly from the Sassy Owl Boutique said if it’s up to her it’s up to her customers.

“I feel like everyone that comes into the door should have the right as an individual to choose if they want a mask or not,” she said.

There’s a special meeting called for Wednesday, April 7, to vote on repealing the city’s mask order.

The vote Wednesday will be based on a majority vote.

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