The County Council is looking for public comments on a plan to require employees and customers of essential businesses to wear face coverings during any interactions under the COVID-19 emergency.

The council yesterday announced its intention to introduce the measure as an emergency Board of Health regulation during a virtual meeting on Tuesday, April 14.

Council President Sidney Katz (D-District 3) has waived the normal public input process for this new regulation, which the council also will vote on during the meeting.

Under the terms of the proposal, essential businesses would be required to provide workers with face coverings as of April 16.

“Beginning April 23, customers will also be required to wear face coverings when visiting essential businesses,” the announcement reads.

“Workers at grocery stores, pharmacies, hardware stores and other essential businesses are putting their lives at risk to keep us all fed and cared for during this emergency,” said Councilmember Hans Riemer, one of the lead sponsors. “We must do everything we can to protect them.”

Councilmember Gabe Albornoz also is a lead sponsor, while Katz, Councilmembers Evan Glass (D-At Large) and Nancy Navarro (D-District 4) are cosponsors.

The draft proposal defines failure to comply with the regulation as a Class C civil violation, enforceable by an agency or agencies designated by the county executive.

The regulation would go into effect immediately upon adoption and would sunset 15 days after the health emergency is lifted.

Comments can be sent to the council at [email protected] or on social media using #MoCoFaceCoverings.

Mike Diegel