Decision on city-wide face covering ordinance left up to Tuscaloosa City Council

Maddox: No authority for mask ordinance

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WBRC) - Thursday, Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox posted on Twitter that the City Attorney’s office determined that it would take a majority vote of the city council to make wearing a face covering mandatory in Tuscaloosa.

“The city council would have to declare a state of emergency. Right now we’re not under a state of emergency. So there is no executive authority for me to require someone to wear a mask,” Maddox explained.

Tuscaloosa City Councilman Eddie Pugh said normally, he hates for the city to require anything and people should have a choice about wearing a mask. But Pugh said coronavirus is different. “If a mask is going to save lives, probably in the long run I will support masks,” he said.

Maddox thinks people aren’t taking COVID-19 as seriously as they should if they are not wearing a mask or social distancing. “We’ve got to continue to respect one another through this process. And the way we can respect each other is wear a mask when we’re out in public.

According to Councilman Pugh, the Chief Medical Officer for DCH Regional Medical will give a presentation to the council Tuesday. We’ll let you know what he says. And if it could lead to a vote on the matter.

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