Mitchell County Commission Issues Statement Regarding Face Coverings


Dear Mitchell County Residents,

At the weekly Mitchell County Commissioner meeting this morning it was decided the Mitchell County Board of Health will not place a resolution overriding Executive Order No. 20-52 requiring masks or other face coverings in public implemented by Governor Kelly on July 3rd, 2020. With that being said, due to enforcement limitations and a strong emphasis on the importance of personal accountability, it was furthermore decided Mitchell County will also not enforce the Executive Order.

The decisions made by the Mitchell County Board of Health does not come lightly, with understanding that further restrictions may be essential in the future based upon current events at that time. Additionally, the Board of Health does strongly recommend the use of masks while in public settings to assist with preventing the spread of COVID-19. Masks remain to only be one piece of the puzzle, continuing with the recommendations of social distancing, hand hygiene, disinfecting highly used surfaces often, limiting non-essential travel, and so on are also critical to limit exposure and decrease risk for infection.

The Mitchell County Commissioners/ Board of Health does support businesses in our county that have chosen to make masks mandatory while in their facility. Many local businesses are strongly recommended or required to follow organizational guidance set forth and have worked meticulously to protect themselves and community members throughout the pandemic. As stated in previous press releases from the Mitchell County Health Department, please continue to proceed with patience and understanding in months to come.

Lastly, a significant rise in travel, events, and gatherings throughout Kansas have contributed to a noticeable increase in positive COVID-19 cases and close contacts in our state. Now, more than ever, it is important to remain steadfast in efforts to decrease the spread of infection. We would like to thank our community members for the tremendous efforts demonstrated in recent months and urge everyone to continue with the same diligence moving forward.

Derek Nester
Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2021 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.

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