Cedar Rapids Modifies City Mask Mandate
On Monday, Cedar Rapids Mayor Brad Hart eased the city's mask mandate to closer follow the recent update from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The Cedar Rapids Gazette reports that the update for Cedar Rapids allows fully vaccinated people to gather outdoors without wearing masks.
The updated CDC guidelines stated that fully vaccinated people can gather and do various outdoor activities without masks in certain settings. The Gazette reports that the city of Cedar Rapids will continue to require masks in groups of 50 or larger, as well as other crowded outdoor settings and venues where it is not as easy to stay socially distant from one another.
A local mask rule has been on the books since Hart signed an emergency proclamation last September, requiring masks or face coverings be worn in public. The Gazette says that Hart will continue to seek information from the Linn County Department of Public Health to determine whether a mask mandate is still needed. No end date has been set.
Mayors of several Iowa cities, including Des Moines and Iowa City, also implemented their own mask mandates last summer, to push back against the view by state officials that local government lacked the legal authority to do so. Cedar Rapids officials say that their focus of the mask mandate has always been more about education than enforcement.
The Gazette reports that so far, there are no plans to alter the mask mandate in Johnson County. Residents there are asked to keep up with the latest from the CDC.