On Tuesday, Central District Health will propose and vote on a mask mandate for all people in Ada County in response to a growing Covid-19 case count.
If the mandate passed at the agency’s Tuesday afternoon board meeting, those who don’t comply could face a misdemeanor, which carries with it a fine of up to $1,000 and jail time of up to six months.
Central District Health oversees health services for four counties: Ada, Boise, Valley, and Elmore. The agency’s unelected oversight board has seven members and includes one county commissioner from each member county.
The draft order, if adopted, would mandate masks for people in Ada County only. CDH commissioners discussed last week applying such a mandate to Ada County and Valley County, as thousands of Treasure Valley residents flock to McCall to vacation each weekend. It’s unclear why the draft proposal doesn’t include Valley County.
The proposal would also limit all public and private gatherings of more than 50 people and requires people maintain social distancing “whenever possible.”
CDH’s proposed order would exempt kids under the age of 2, those with physical health problems that prevent them from wearing a mask, those with mental health conditions that prevent compliance, hearing impaired, those who would take extra risk on the job by wearing a mask, those eating and drinking at restaurants, and those who need to obtain certain services.
It’s unclear how CDH would enforce the mask mandate.
Boise imposed a somewhat similar mandate earlier this month. The Boise order mandated masks, but did not limit gathering sizes.