Adams County extends mask mandate through Nov. 30

Published 2:11 pm Tuesday, October 20, 2020

NATCHEZ — Adams County officials extended their local mask mandate through Nov. 30 during Monday’s regularly scheduled meeting.

A motion to extend the mandate made by Supervisor Angela Hutchins and seconded by Supervisor Warren Gaines passed on a 3-2 vote.

Supervisors Wes Middleton and Kevin Wilson voted “nay” to extending the mandate.

The Mississippi State Department of Health reports Adams County has had a total of 1,043 confirmed COVID-19 cases since March.

Adams County had 45 active cases as of Friday, Emergency Management Director Robert Bradford said Monday during a regularly scheduled meeting of the Adams County Board of Supervisors.

“The trigger number for us to remove the mandate is under 20 (active cases),” Bradford said. “Right now, we’re looking at almost triple. With the upcoming months of travel and holidays, they anticipate another spike so we want to make sure we’re not on the receiving end of that and want to make sure we keep everyone safe.”

Gaines said he believes officials should study Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves’ executive order, which ended the statewide mask-wearing mandate in September.

“The mandate word is dropped but it is still strongly urged,” Middleton said. “You are still being asked to wear the masks in places where you cannot socially distance. Outdoors, indoors and in public places the masks are still strongly urged and I think most people are doing it.”

In other matters during Monday’s meeting of the Adams County Board of Supervisors, the board:

* Discussed the budget for a public defenders office, which would be used to assign county-paid attorneys to defendants of criminal cases who are found indigent.

The budget for the office, which has not yet been approved by the Board of Supervisors, is estimated to cost approximately $300,000 per year.

* Unanimously approved a renewal of the E911 agreement with the City of Natchez. In the agreement, the city and county would split the cost of E911 50/50, which is a little more than $3,000 per month each from the city and the county.

* Unanimously approved the use of county equipment to contribute to a DIP Grant program with Loss Prevention Services and the City of Natchez.

* Unanimously accepted the low bid for replacing the roof on the District Attorney’s office building from B&J Roofing for $14,740.

* Heard a public comment from Adams County resident Jack Blaney regarding his intent to establish a “minuteman group” that would meet bi-monthly in the Kingston area.