Public Hearing Notice on Board of Health Regulation to Reinstitute Indoor Masking Requirements if Montgomery County Becomes an Area of Substantial COVID-19 Transmission

by Patrick Herron
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Per Montgomery County:

For Immediate Release: Monday, August 2, 2021

ROCKVILLE, Md., August 2, 2021—The Montgomery County Council, sitting as the Board of Health, is scheduled to introduce, hold a public hearing and vote on a Board of Health Regulation to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Montgomery County on Thursday, August 5, 2021, at 2 p.m.

The Board of Health regulation, sponsored by Council President Tom Hucker at the request of County Executive Marc Elrich, is consistent with new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance and would require face coverings in public indoor areas if and when the County reaches “substantial” COVID-19 transmission.

The regulation:

  • Generally would require residents to wear face coverings in indoor areas open to the public if the County becomes an area of substantial transmission of COVID-19. The County would be deemed an area of substantial transmission if the County reaches 50 to 99.99 total new cases per 100,000 persons in the past 7 days or 8 to 9.99 percent test positivity during the past 7 days. The CDC classifies transmission values as low, moderate, substantial or high, Guidance for Implementing COVID-19 Prevention Strategies in the Context of Varying Community Transmission Levels and Vaccination Coverage | MMWR (cdc.gov).
  • If the County becomes an area of substantial transmission, the Health Officer would be required to notify the Council, the County Executive and the public that the indoor mask mandate has been triggered.

The deadline to sign up for the public hearing is Thursday, August 5 at 9 a.m. As soon as the Board of Health regulation is available it will be posted on the Council’s web page.

To sign up to testify, please click here. If you are not available for the public hearing but want to provide testimony to the Council you can do so by submitting written, audio or video testimony here.

More information can be found at the Montgomery County Council’s webpage at www.montgomerycountymd.gov/council.

NOTE: During the COVID-19 state of emergency, the public is not able to be physically present in the Council Hearing Room. Residents who would like to call in to testify at a Council public hearing need to preregister on the Council’s web page at https://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/council/calendar.html. Once the public hearing sign up request form is submitted and the public hearing list is created, individuals will receive separate confirmation notifications that include the appropriate phone number to call for the public hearing.

Community members also have the option to provide audio, video and written testimony to the Council using a recently developed online testimony form on the Council’s web page which can be found at https://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/COUNCIL/PHSignUp.html. The testimony provided with the online option carries the same weight as testimony given at a public hearing. Councilmembers consider all comments as part of their deliberations.

Comments and suggestions are welcome online at http://tinyurl.com/zrbwh5v; via email at county.council@montgomerycountymd.gov; by sending regular mail to County Council, 100 Maryland Ave., Rockville, MD 20850. For information or to express an opinion call 240-777-7900.

The meeting will be televised live by County Cable Montgomery (CCM) on Xfinity channels 6 and 996, RCN channels 6 and 1056; and FiOS channel 30. Also available live via streaming through the Council website at http://tinyurl.com/z9982v8, Facebook Live (@MontgomeryCountyMdCouncil or @ConcejodelCondadodeMontgomery), or YouTube (@MoCoCouncilMD).

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