, May 25, 2022

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Vallejo council renews mask mandate during 10-minute meeting

  •   2 min reads
Vallejo council renews mask mandate during 10-minute meeting
Vallejo City Hall.

VALLEJO - During what might have been the quickest meeting in Vallejo’s history, the city council approved two COVID-19-related items during a 10-minute meeting Tuesday night.

The only comment of the night came from a public speaker who urged the council to extend a mask mandate requiring people 4 years and older to wear a face covering while inside buildings open to the public within city limits.The council did, approving the item via 6-0 vote. Councilwoman Mina Loera-Diaz, District 3, was absent from the meeting.

Individuals who are fully vaccinated from COVID-19 are still expected to wear a face covering while inside restaurants, grocery stores, laundromats and office buildings.

The council is expected to keep renewing the mandate every six weeks until either at least 80 percent of Vallejo residents are fully vaccinated or until the city is not considered to have substantial or high transmission rates as defined by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

In June, the council rescinded a mask mandate that had been on the books for over a year when COVID cases were on the decline. The council reversed course months later as the Delta variant pushed case numbers higher than the prior summer.

The council also voted to continue to hold council meetings remotely.

During the initial months of the COVID-19 pandemic, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed an executive order relaxing Brown Act requirements regarding the use of teleconference meetings. The order ended at the end of September. The state legislature then passed a law extending the provisions of Newsom’s order.

But the new order requires a “proclaimed state of emergency” before an agency can continue the practice of holding meetings via teleconference.

Part of Tuesday’s action included re-adoption of a resolution ratifying a local emergency proclamation that was declared in March 2020.

The council previously discussed having a hybrid council meeting model. Vallejo’s chief innovation officer, Naveed Ashraf, said it would take his team about a month to set up the hybrid model. Those meetings could start in November.

The order must be renewed every 30 days to remain in effect. The council is scheduled to meet on Oct. 26 to decide on whether to extend the order an additional 30 days.

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