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Oceanside the latest city to not enforce mask rule for private businesses

Posted at 6:13 AM, Dec 17, 2021

OCEANSIDE, Calif. (KGTV) - California's indoor mask mandate took effect this week, but Oceanside is among the cities that have decided to not enforce a certain part of the requirement.

"If the state wants to enforce a mask mandate, then they need to provide the manpower to do so,” Oceanside City Councilmember Christopher Rodriguez said.

Rodriguez added, "I reached out to my city manager and the city attorney of Oceanside, as well as the police chief, and I asked them if they would be enforcing the statewide mandate on wearing masks indoors on our private businesses. And the answer was no."

Oceanside’s website states the mandate will apply to all of their facilities and those who enter them.

"It's been the policy of the city to allow for the county to be doing the enforcement,” Oceanside Mayor Esther Sanchez said. "From day one of the pandemic, when the public health orders came down from the county health officer, what we've done is given the information out to the public how to contact the county with respect to violations of the county health orders.”

Rodriguez said in his conversation with top city officials that any and all complaints would be referred to the county and the state.

The county is expecting people to follow the state requirements and act in the best interest of everyone. When it comes to enforcement, county officials said, “Enforcement of masking is the purview of the jurisdiction in which violations take place.”

"Each business is going to need to regulate the way they want to and that's their private, God-given right to do so. And I fully support that,” Rodriguez said.

Oceanside is taking a similar stance as Coronado and El Cajon when it comes to the mandate and private businesses.

While Oceanside isn't enforcing the mandate for private businesses, Sanchez hopes people still mask up.

"It's a simple thing to mask up. No, we're not going to be out there with our police officers mandating this,” Sanchez said. “But, what we're relying on is, you know, people going to the store, wear your mask."

The statewide indoor mask mandate is set to last until at least Jan. 15, 2022.