Greer City Council proposes emergency ordinance for masks in certain businesses

By Jim Fair, Editor
Published on Tuesday, July 14, 2020

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Greer City Council proposes emergency ordinance for masks in certain businesses
Greer City Council will vote on an emergency ordinance and resolution Tuesday to mandate individuals to wear face coverings/masks within the city in certain circumstances.

South Carolina’s spiking and record-setting COVID-19 cases have nearly doubled in the past two weeks, according to Dr. Joan Duwve, Director of Public Health for DHEC. Greenville County is a hot spot with daily record cases.

Greenville and Spartanburg cities have passed ordinances requiring masks to be worn under certain conditions, the same Greer City Council is proposing.

Greer’s ordinance will be effective at 6:01 p.m. on Friday, July 17 through Sept. 17 – 60 days, unless terminated by another ordinance.

Confirmed cases in South Carolina are approximately 48,770 and confirmed deaths are 876.

As of Monday the number of reported COVID-19 cases in Greenville County is 7,253, and Spartanburg County is 2,561; and, the total number of estimated cases in Greenville County is 44,544 and in Spartanburg County is 15,732. Greenville County leads the state with 106 deaths (972 in S.C.) and trails Charleston (7,835) by 574 cases.

Council’s ordinance suggests the increasing number of people relying on medical, pharmaceutical, and general cleaning supplies and its negative impact will increase, the private and public sector work force by absenteeism, and the demand for medical facilities possibly exceeding locally available resources.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggests cloth face coverings to slow the spread of COVID-19 and minimize the risk to the public.

The City is taking steps to try to protect the citizens and employees of the City from increased risk of exposure, the ordinance reads.

It requires customers inside grocery stores and pharmacies to wear face coverings and all employees of restaurants, bars, retail establishments, salons, beauty shops, barbershops, grocery stores, and pharmacies to wear face coverings at any time there is face-to-face interaction with the public.

The term grocery store shall mean a retail establishment that primarily sells food, but may also sell other convenience and household goods. The term does not, the ordinance reads.

The business shall not have responsibility for enforcing the requirement, but shall post conspicuous signage at all entrances informing its patrons of the requirements of this section.

Any person who is unable to safely wear a face covering due to age, an underlying health condition, or is unable to remove the face covering without the assistance of others is exempt from the ordinance.

A person who fails to comply with Section 1 of the ordinance will be guilty of a civil infraction, punishable by a fine or not more than $25. A person who fails to comply with Section 2 of the ordinance will be guilty of a civil infraction, punishable by a fine of not more than $100.

Continued violations are considered separate offenses. Repeated violations by a person who owns, manages, operates or otherwise controls a business subject to the ordinance may could result in the suspension or revocation of any occupancy permit or business license issued to business where the repeated violations occurred, according to the ordinance.





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