Germantown passes resolution urging governor to issue statewide mask mandate

Local leaders stepping up calls on Gov. Bill Lee to require masks statewide

GERMANTOWN, Tenn. (WMC) - The city of Germantown now joining a growing group of leaders urging Tennessee Governor Bill Lee to pass a statewide mask mandate.

The Germantown Board of Aldermen passed a resolution that will be sent to the governor asking him to reconsider a statewide mask mandate.

“A mask mandate is simply one of those collective decisions and actions needed to preserve our freedom of movement, our freedom of access and I believe we need to act proactively rather than retroactively,” said Alderwoman Mary Anne Gibson.

Germantown isn’t alone. Bartlett’s Mayor Keith McDonald also wants everyone to mask up.

New calls for mask mandate across Tennessee

McDonald says he and he made his plea directly to the governor via phone last Wednesday, but he didn’t get the response he was looking for.

“He wants people to wear masks, but he believes that message is better coming from the county mayors rather than out of Nashville,” said McDonald.

Lee is leaving it up to the county mayors to decide about mask mandates.

Fayette and Tipton county mayors have not brought back their mask mandate. Although over the past seven days, Tipton County has averaged nearly 49 cases per 100,000 residents per day.

Fayette County has averaged nearly 35 new cases.

Suburban cities like Bartlett are feeling it in their hospitals, as rural residents are crossing county lines for medical care.

“Data showed about 40% of those patients with COVID in the hospital were from outside Shelby County,” said McDonald.

Mcdonald says that was the data at St. Francis-Bartlett last Wednesday. However, some suburban leaders agree with the governor.

“He tends to lean towards the side that he doesn’t want to infringe on people’s civil liberties. I tend to agree with that,” said Germantown Alderman Scott Sanders.

In the end, Germantown Aldermen voted 3 to 2 to send a resolution to the governor’s desk asking for a statewide mask mandate.

Dyer County Mayor Chris Young says last week he opted to bring back his county’s mask mandate.

Young says their mandate will remain in place through the end of the year.

Tipton County Mayor Jeff Huffman says he wants to take a deep dive into the COVID-19 numbers before making a final decision about bringing back their county-wide mask mandate.

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