Madison County Health Department announced July 23, 2020, there is a three-strike rule for businesses in Madison County where employees fail to wear face coverings when they are in contact with members of the public.

According to Governor Andrew Cuomo’s face-covering executive order, employees who are unable to maintain six feet of social distancing when dealing with members of the public must wear face coverings. The governor has placed the enforcement of his executive order upon the local governments.

Madison County has received complaints and concerns from members of our community about small businesses and the big box stores not requiring employees to wear masks or not requiring customers to wear masks. When Madison County receives these reports, either a member of the Madison County Health Department or Madison County Sheriff’s Office will follow up with a phone call, letter or visit to the business; no fines have been issued in the past. At the July 14, 2020, Board of Supervisors meeting, the board approved a three-strike enforcement policy for the Health Department.

Strike 1 – Phone call to the business and education

Strike 2 – Visit from either a member of the Health Department or Sheriff’s Office and education

Strike 3 – Fines begin at $500

“Wearing a face covering is one of the best defenses we have against COVID-19,” said Madison County Public Health Director Eric Faisst. “We have said for months now and continue to ask people to wear their face coverings when they are unable to maintain social distancing. Please remember anyone over the age of 2 should wear a face covering. Because many people can be infectious but not show symptoms, wearing a mask protects you and others, should you be infected.”

Remain diligent; protect yourself and others by wearing a face covering when you are out in public, especially when unable to maintain social distancing. Practice good hygiene. These guidelines are for all of our protection to stop the spread of COVID-19 in our community.

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By martha

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