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West Columbia extends emergency face mask ordinance until March

The ordinance expires on March 1, 2021.

WEST COLUMBIA, S.C. — West Columbia has extended its emergency face covering ordinance through March 1, 2021. 

West Columbia City Council extended the emergency ordinance requiring face coverings in certain establishments in the city at a special council meeting on Wednesday. The ordinance expires on the 61st day, March 1, 2021. 

The ordinance requires face coverings be worn inside any foodservice establishment, retail establishment, hair salon, nail salon, barber shops, personal hygiene establishments, medical office and City Building including:

  • Grocery stores;
  • Pharmacies;
  • Commercial stores engaged in the retail sale of goods or services to the public including sporting goods stores; furniture and home-furnishings stores; clothing, shoe, and clothing-accessory stores; jewelry, luggage, and leather goods stores; department stores; hardware and home-improvement stores; book, craft, and music stores; florists and flower stores; bars and taverns; all other stores that sell supplies for household consumption or use;
  • Alcoholic beverage stores; and
  • Laundromats.

All foodservice establishments and retail establishments within the City must require every employee to wear a face covering at all times while having face-to-face interaction with the public or other employees or where social distancing of at least six feet cannot be observed at all times.

Businesses, where masks are required, must place a “Notice” in a conspicuous place notifying the public of the requirement to wear a face covering.

Face coverings will not be required:

  • by any person who is unable to safely wear a Face Covering due to age or an underlying health condition;
  • by any person who is physically unable to remove the Face Covering without the assistance of others;
  • by all persons 10 years of age or under, unless in a restaurant, where the requirement is 2 years of age or over;
  • all persons whose religious beliefs prevent them from wearing a Face Covering;
  • any person in a private or individual office;
  • where it is not feasible to wear a Face Covering, including persons receiving oral health services, persons swimming, engaging in athletic activities;
  • for patrons of Foodservice Establishments while they are dining; and
  • by police officers, firefighters, and other first responders when not practical or engaged in a public safety matter of an emergency nature.

City officials say violations are a civil infraction and will result in a fine of not more than $25.00 for each violation.

Complaints about violations can be made by calling the West Columbia Hotline at 803-939-8627.