News & Politics

Montgomery County Ends Its Mask Mandate

Photograph by kovop58, via iStock.

Montgomery County announced Wednesday that its mask mandate would lift one minute after midnight on Thursday morning. The county said Tuesday that it would lift the stricture once it reached seven straight days of “moderate” transmission, which the CDC defines as fewer than 50 new cases of Covid-19 infections per 100,000 people over a seven-day period.

That milestone has been reached, County Executive Marc Elrich said Wednesday. Public facilities will be able to drop mask requirements as of Thursday, though businesses can still require customers to wear them.

MoCo has one of the nation’s best vaccination rates, with 90.6 percent of its residents fully vaxxed. It required face masks indoors beginning in early August. Both Elrich and the county’s acting health officer, James Bridgers, recommended Tuesday that people continue to wear masks when around others.

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Andrew Beaujon joined Washingtonian in late 2014. He was previously with the Poynter Institute,, and Washington City Paper. His book A Bigger Field Awaits Us: The Scottish Soccer Team That Fought the Great War was published in 2018. He lives in Del Ray.