SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) – One of the new rules from Gov. Kim Reynold’s new proclamation includes wearing a mask inside public spaces, and some Siouxlanders are wondering how that mask mandate will be enforced, and what the penalty will be if they choose not to comply.
Sioux City Council member Dan Moore said there aren’t enough police officers in the city to watch for that.
“We are already stretched pretty thin with law enforcement, but to take that police force and to out and start enforcing mask wearing, it’s going to take their energies and time away from something that might have a higher priority. And that’s very difficult to say because what’s a higher priority than saving lives and helping people,” said Moore.
Moore also encourages residents to focus on practicing good habits.
“We all collectively need to do what’s best for us as the public, as the city of Sioux City, to be mindful not to let your guard down, but to be mindful and wear a mask where it’s encouraged and wear a mask where it’s required.”
While council members hope they’re setting a good example by wearing masks during public meetings, Mayor Bob Scott said there is no fine or penalty for not wearing one.
“I don’t think our police department wants to go into your Thanksgiving dinner and tell you, ‘you have to many people there,’ I don’t see us doing that, obviously mask ordinance and declarations are like seat belts, some people are going to choose not to wear them but we hope they would heed the governor’s advice and wear the mask, I don’t know what you can do to enforce it when there isn’t a penalty, there isn’t anything you can do,” said Scott.
Enforcing the new rules continues to present a problem as Iowa cities have not been granted the powers to enforce mask mandates by the governor.
Below is the full proclamation Reynolds issued Monday, Nov. 16.