County face covering compliance high

Board of health special meeting goes virtual

The county is already seeing “substantial impressive compliance” to the state-wide face covering directive by Governor Steve Bullock, Gallatin City-County Health Officer Matt Kelley said.

There will be a grace period where the county will help educate individuals and organizations about expectations and the reasoning behind the request. He stressed that the approach is collaborative. After some time, if individuals or organizations are still having trouble complying, then there could be civil penalties.

He said it appears that businesses are being cooperative and partnerships are strong.

“We have good partners both with the county and municipal police departments,” he said. “I expect that if we need help we will get help from them.”

The rescheduled Gallatin City-County Board of Health special meeting that was postponed due to overcrowding on July 14 is set for Friday, July 24 at 7 a.m. and will be virtual only. The agenda is unchanged despite Governor Steve Bullock’s statewide directive for face coverings.

Two measures are being considered: a new emergency health rule that would require the use of face covering by most people in most indoor public places and an extension of the board’s emergency rule requiring people who have tested positive for COVID-19 to remain in isolation until they are no longer contagious. Quarantine of close contacts of known cases and those who are symptomatic and awaiting testing are also included in that rule.

“Regardless of the board’s actions, the governor’s directive on face coverings remains in effect and all residents and visitors to Gallatin County should abide by those requirements to wear face coverings in certain public settings,” a press release said.

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