Mask ordinance no longer effective in Greenville; private businesses can still require masks

Local News

GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA) – On Wednesday, officials with the City of Greenville announced that their emergency mask ordinance is no longer valid following the most recent executive order from Governor Henry McMaster.

According to a press release from the city, the City of Greenville will no longer requires masks at outdoor event and venue settings.

“The city attorney, our legal team, has spent a good bit of the day looking through the governor’s orders, trying to figure out what it means for us,” City Spokeswoman Beth Brotherton said. “And ultimately figured out that governor’s orders supersede anything that a local municipality would want to do.”

Brotherton said whether or not a private business chooses to have customers wear masks is at their discretion.

“Private businesses would certainly have the authority to make their own rules but it will certainly be more difficult to enforce considering the circumstances both statewide and now with the city ordinance now being eliminated,” said Brotherton.

This applies to places like Fluor Field.

Greenville Drive General Manager Erik Jarinko told 7 News they are mandated by the MLB to keep the mask policy in place.

It also applies to municipal courts.

“If you have a traffic ticket or other court appearance in city court, you will still have your temperature taken and a mask required there,” said Brotherton.

That’s a result of a state supreme court justice ruling that does not face the same rules as a city government would from a governor’s orders.

Brotherton said Greenville will continue to consult with DHEC, Prisma Health and Bon Secours St. Francis to make further judgment.

“One of the things we’re going to do now is instead of seeing a lot of masks required signs, you might see a lot of recommended mask-guidance type signs,” said Brotherton.

She said there are still things being figured out and a lot of moving parts to make sure Greenvillians stay safe, as the pandemic is not over.

“The governor has said very clearly South Carolinians need to make their own responsible decisions,” Brotherton said. “And we’re now at a point with enough vaccine that municipalities should not have the authority to be able to dictate whether or not masks can be worn. So, it comes to a point now where our leadership shifts from the requirement to strongly encouraging.”

The city of Anderson let its mask ordinance expire in late April.

The only ordinance left in effect there covers city facilities, which will remain in effect until June 12 unless directed otherwise by city council.

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