Moab issues mask mandate for city facilities

Grand County is experiencing high transmission of COVID-19, along with much of the state.

(Leah Hogsten | The Salt Lake Tribune) Moab is photographed Feb. 19, 2021. The city announced Tuesday that masks are required in all public facilities.

The city of Moab has instituted a mask mandate at all municipal facilities following updated guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and recommendations from Moab Regional Hospital.

Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall signed an executive order on July 28 with similar restrictions for city employees and visitors to public facilities amid a surge of COVID-19 cases in the state, along with the new CDC advice recommending that vaccinated individuals return to masking.

As of Tuesday, 17 of Utah’s 29 counties are listed with a high level of COVID-19 transmission, including Salt Lake County and Grand County, according to the state’s COVID-19 Transmission Index.

“COVID-19 infection rates are again climbing across the country, largely due to the spread of the delta variant,” stated a post from the city’s Twitter account. “This variant is far more contagious than the original COVID-19 virus and hospitalizations are increasing, even in our community. Masks and social distancing are proven to help slow the spread of all variants of the virus.”

Tuesday was the fifth day in a row that there were fewer than 1,000 new cases of COVID-19 in Utah, with a total of 634 cases. The rolling seven-day average for new cases stands at 812. Last week, on Aug. 5, the rolling seven-day average for new cases was 905, the highest since mid-February.

Also on Tuesday, Salt Lake County Health Department executive director Dr. Angela Dunn issued a notice of intent to Salt Lake County Mayor Jenny Wilson for a requirement that children in the county — from kindergarten to sixth grade — wear masks in schools. After the order becomes official on Aug. 11, the Salt Lake County Council will have a week to decide whether to overturn the order.