Governor Reynolds Denounces Muscatine Mask Mandate
KCRG reports that according to Governor Kim Reynolds, the mayor of Muscatine did NOT have the authority to become Iowa's first mayor to mandate mask-wearing in her city. Diana Broderson signed a proclamation that went into effect Monday, saying she was assured by the city attorney she had such authority.
Not so fast, according to Reynolds and the Muscatine County Attorney.
Local governments cannot, under Iowa law, make such a mandate that conflicts with the Governor's orders and proclamations. Reynolds has not required face coverings statewide. Neither Reynolds nor the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) have made them a requirement.
Recent spikes in cases among young adults were acknowledged by Reynolds, who said if it's found they are tied to bar activity, restrictions on those establishments will be increased again.
From the Governor to the Mayor and between their respective aides, it seems our leaders aren't on the same page. Muscatine County attorney James Barry threw Broderson under the bus by saying in a statement that "so long as county offices remain closed to the public, I am advising Muscatine County, all elected officials and employees to abide by the governor’s proclamations regarding the pandemic and until further clarification or different directives are issued, but then so long as they are performing their official governmental functions/duties". You can find more on that here.
We will keep you posted as to what's going to happen in Muscatine now that the Governor has spoken against the Mayor.