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Livingston County Won’t Enforce Hochul’s Mandate

December 13, 2021

Statement from Board Chairman David LeFeber on behalf of the Livingston County Board of Supervisors

Geneseo, NY — The Board of Supervisors acknowledges that New York State plans to implement a statewide mandate on masks / vaccine requirements effective today, Monday, December 13th. This directive represents a change of position from Governor Hochul.

Earlier this month, Hochul was making comments that she would allow these types of mandates to be local, county-by-county decisions. The Governor is stated as saying “we don’t need a one-size fits all approach.” While she did further say she might consider statewide edicts, the Governor also commented on December 2nd that such a mandate Upstate would be “almost impossible” to enforce. We agree Governor.

Governor Hochul derided the use of these types of measures just days ago. Now, we are back to Cuomo-era approaches. That is an unfortunate, and swift, switch of position by the Governor.

Livingston County has taken a position that we will not be enforcing this state mandate at the local / county level. Any state mandate of this type should come with corresponding state-led oversight and resources from the state government, not pushed down to counties to handle the work of enforcement for an “unenforceable” mandate that is due to be re-assessed in approximately 30 days.

Instead, our efforts at the County level will continue to be in the areas of mental health services, public health messaging, enhanced and expanded testing, supports to K-12 schools to keep children in the classroom, vaccine advocacy and other related pandemic response services.

Complaints and calls related to issues of masks and business mandates should, and will, be forwarded to the NYS Department of Health as the rightful responding agency for any enforcement consideration.