Mask requirement effective after midnight in Bemidji

Mayor of Bemidji Rita Albrecht made an amendment to the local emergency proclamation, ordering that masks be worn in indoor public spaces effective 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, July 21, 2020.

The council would have needed all five member support to pass an emergency ordinance on a mask requirement, but Ward 5’s Nancy Erickson expressed that she did not support a mandate, and Ward 3’s Ron Johnson indicated he was not aware a vote would take place during Monday’s meeting.

Ward 1’s Michael Meehlhause offered the motion to support the mayor’s amendment, and Ward 4’s representative Emelie Rivera seconded. The council’s consent to the amendment passed, with three in favor, one against, and one abstention.

From the draft declaration in the council’s packet, note that option 2 was selected under enforcement:


Larissa Donovan is the News Director for the stations of Paul Bunyan Broadcasting and has been, almost without interruption, since Election Day 2016. She covers events and issues in north central Minnesota, which include local government, crime, courts, education, environment and social issues. She studied communications at Bemidji State University and received her degree in 2018. Larissa, native to the great state of New York, grew up in Bemidji, and enjoys spending her spare time with her family and pet cat. She also loves Star Trek, punk rock music and the theater.

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