North Myrtle Beach leaders approve face mask mandate

Updated: Jun. 30, 2020 at 10:22 PM EDT
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NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) – The North Myrtle Beach City Council has passed an ordinance calling for the use of face masks in public places.

During Tuesday’s special meeting, council members voted unanimously on the ordinance. It takes effect at 12 p.m. on Thursday, July 2.

According to information from the city, anyone entering retail businesses, including but not limited to grocery stores and pharmacies or businesses that conduct personal service like, hair and/or nail salons, barbershops and tattoo parlors and others must wear a face covering while inside.

A person who fails to comply shall be guilty of a civil infraction, punishable by a fine of not more than $25.00.

Additionally, all restaurants, retail businesses and all government offices in the city must require their employees to wear a face covering at all times while having face-to-face interaction with the public. A violation is punishable by a fine of not more than $100. Each day of a continuing violation will be considered a separate offense.

Exemptions are for for anyone who is unable to safely wear a face covering due to age, an underlying health condition, or is unable to remove the face covering without assistance of others; and any person whose religious beliefs prevents them from wearing a face covering, according to the city.

The decision comes as COVID-19 cases continue to rise across the Grand Strand.

“Wearing a mask is a simple thing,” North Myrtle Beach Mayor Marilyn Hatley said during the meeting.

She stressed that masks will only be required when people are inside public spaces.

“When they get outside, they can take that mask off. When they’re with their friends, if they choose not to wear their mask, they don’t have to wear their mask,” Hatley said.

The full ordinance can be read below:

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