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Posted on: November 6, 2020

East Lansing Mayor Extends City State of Emergency and Downtown Mask Order

EAST LANSING, Mich. — Today, East Lansing Mayor Aaron Stephens signed a new proclamation and order to extend the City’s State of Emergency and the requirement to wear a mask in all outdoor public spaces within the boundaries of the East Lansing Downtown Development Authority (DDA).

Under this new order and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services’ latest Gatherings and Face Mask Order, masks continue to be required at all times in all public spaces in the DDA district, both inside and outdoors (sidewalks, streets, plazas, etc.). For mask requirements in other parts of the community, community members are encouraged to review MDHHS’ Gatherings and Face Mask Order.

“COVID-19 hospitalizations in our county have increased significantly in recent weeks, which is why it is vitally important that we continue to remain vigilant and look out for one another,” said East Lansing Mayor Aaron Stephens. “We are calling on all community members to continue to wear a mask and practice safe physical distancing when out in public spaces for the health and safety of our community.”

Signs have been installed at the entry points of the DDA district as well as throughout the downtown and inside parking garages to notify visitors that masks are required. Additionally, sidewalks throughout the downtown have been chalked with reminders to wear a mask. The City has also implemented a downtown mask ambassador program, which serves to encourage mask-wearing in the downtown during times when there is anticipated high foot traffic.

 Under Ordinance No. 1488, East Lansing’s mayor is empowered to declare a City State of Emergency and issue orders, rules and regulations regarding the use of public property to protect life and property during the declared emergency. Pursuant to Ordinance No. 1488, a violation of this order is a civil infraction punishable by a fine of up to $25. 

While the extended order can initially only be in place for seven days, it can be continued through December 31, 2020 with the consent of Council. It is expected that Council will be considering the order’s continuation at its special, electronic meeting on Tuesday, Nov. 10. UPDATE (11/11/20): The order was extended to the end of 2020 with the unanimous consent of Council. 

Although a mask is encouraged even for people who are not required to wear one, the requirement to wear a mask in the East Lansing DDA boundary is subject to some exceptions. Those exceptions can be viewed within the City’s Face Coverings Order and MDHHS’ Gatherings and Face Mask Order (both are linked above).               

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