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New Ozark mayor rescinds mask order

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Newly elected Ozark Mayor Bradley Jackson rescinded the city's face covering ordinance.

The ordinance now is slated to end on April 22, according to a news release. It previously had been scheduled to expire April 30, said Samantha Payne, assistant city administrator.

"With the consistent declining number of positive cases, the growing number of vaccinations and the availability of vaccine for all our residents, my constituents feel that it is time to remove the mandate and have encouraged this decision," Jackson said in the release. "Some business owners may decide to keep a mask order in place on their property and we should be respectful of their wishes at their place of business."

Missouri's COVID-19 dashboard shows that for the seven-day period ending April 20, there were 22 confirmed coronavirus cases in Christian County.

The city of Ozark's mask ordinance first was enacted in October by former Mayor Rick Gardner, according to past reporting.

Jackson was elected on April 6.

In the neighboring city of Nixa, the mask order ends April 30. The city of Branson’s order ended April 16.

In Springfield, City Council members voted to end the city's masking order when thresholds of less than 20 new cases per day, under 20 hospitalizations in COVID-19 isolation and a vaccination rate of 50% of the eligible population are met. The Springfield-Greene County Health Department's COVID-19 dashboard this morning showed the seven-day average for daily cases is 17, hospitalizations are at 26 and nearly 29% of eligible residents are fully vaccinated.

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