Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell says the County government, Health Department and Law Enforcement will not be enforcing Governor Kathy Hochul’s mask mandate, calling the requirement unrealistic. The mandate requires masks or proof of COVID-19 vaccination to enter all public spaces in New York.
Odell says one issue she has is that the order called for the Putnam County Department of Health to police the requirement, but she says the health care professionals are not a policing agency. She noted that they're tasked with informing residents about the steps necessary to protect themselves.
Odell questions whether the Health Department, which is already working overtime, should stop running essential vaccine clinics and redirect efforts to checking whether the unvaccinated are entering buildings unmasked.
A private-public partnership in Putnam County will create a COVID testing site that will open at the Donald B. Smith campus in Carmel before Christmas and operate six days a week.