Gov. Bill Lee backed County Executive Jimmy Haley’s mask mandate during Warren County’s weekly COVID-19 press conference Tuesday morning which the governor joined by telephone.
“Masks have been highly politicized and there’s no reason for that to be,” said Gov. Lee. “There’s nothing political about masks. They do work and they do show the ability to slow the spread of the virus.”
The governor explained why a mask mandate didn’t come down from the state level.
“I think people trust their local elected officials a lot more than they trust state government. That’s why I’ve given locals authority to issue mask requirements because they know what their communities need,” Gov. Lee said. “They know about COVID spread in their particular county and they know what their citizens want.”
“When masks became more and more prevalent across this state, our numbers began to flatten out and start to go down,” said Gov. Lee. “It’s pretty clear. You can look across the country and see that. If people wash their hands, keep their distance, and wear their masks then you can go to a football game on Friday night. You can open your businesses and open your schools. We can keep our state and our livelihoods going forward.”
“Doctors have been wearing masks all their lives for generations now for a reason,” said Gov. Lee. “At the end of the day, mandates don’t get people to wear masks but personal responsibility does. People have to use common sense. There are places where masks are needed and there are places where they’re not.”
Warren County has a mask mandate in place until the end of September.