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Palm Beach County extends mask mandate another 30 days

Facial coverings still required in public as judge mulls lawsuit
Verdenia Baker at Palm Beach County commission meeting, July 14, 2020
Posted at 10:22 PM, Jul 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-23 22:26:17-04

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Palm Beach County has extended its controversial mask mandate for another month.

An emergency order signed Thursday by County Administrator Verdenia Baker extends last month's edict that masks be worn in public places for an additional 30 days.

Facial coverings must continue to be worn until at least Aug. 23.

The previous order was set to expire at 12:01 a.m. Friday.

Commissioners voted unanimously last month in favor of a mask mandate to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

A Palm Beach County judge listened to arguments from attorneys challenging the mask mandate during a hearing earlier this week. The lawsuit seeks to quash the countywide requirement.

Attorneys for four Palm Beach County residents claim the mandate violates their clients' constitutional rights. Lawyers for the county argue the mandate aligns with similar orders enacted by other governments in times of emergency.

Judge John Kastrenakes didn't make a decision from the bench but said he would issue a written ruling within a week.