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Emergency mask order for all of general public in Martin County does not pass

Commissioners will meet next week to review revised order
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Posted at 10:11 PM, Jul 02, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-03 00:12:59-04

MARTIN COUNTY, Fla. — It's back to the drawing board for commissioners when it comes to mandating masks for all of the public to wear.

Local leaders met for 11 hours Thursday and at the end of their meeting, walked out the same way they walked in, with nothing.

"Since we couldn't figure it out and get to exactly where we needed to be, we accomplished nothing," said Ed Ciampi, District 5 Commissioner. "I'm disappointed. Our percentages are some of the highest in the state."

The proposed order that failed three votes to two, would have required everyone to wear facial coverings in all public places, including restaurants when not actively eating.

Children under the age of six, along with those exercising and those with health conditions would have not been required to wear facial coverings under the order.

Residents of Martin County we're strongly divided during public comment.

"In my 60 years, I have never seen our freedom eroded so quickly," said one woman.

"Masks will help save lives and protect people and will actually help promote business in the future," said another.

Ciampi said the reason the order failed to pass was that commissioners could not agree on the language written.

If passed, violators could have potentially faced a misdemeanor.

Commissioners will now have to wait until next week to review a revised version of the order.

"I think we kick the can down the road again through the holiday weekend to next Tuesday," said Ciampi.