By Shereen Siewert

Wausau officials next week will consider extending the city’s face covering resolution through May.

Members of the council in November approved a face covering resolution to take effect when Gov. Tony Evers’ statewide mandate expires or if the state resolution is struck down in the courts. The resolution was set to sunset in January but was later extended through March 31, 2021.

In November, council members said their goal was to ensure COVID-19 infections decreased. The resolution stops short of outlining any enforcement action.

Under the terms of the resolution, the city asks residents age 5 and older to wear masks in all indoor public spaces and encourages all businesses, organizations, and non-profit entities within the city to post notice requiring employees, customers, visitors, members, or members of the public to wear a face covering whenever those persons are in a building open to the public.

During a Public Health and Safety Committee meeting earlier this week, Committee Chair Lisa Rasmussen said that although the pandemic appears to be winding down, health guidelines still call for the use of masks.

Dist. 9 Alder Dawn Herbst said she felt the mask resolution should be extended as long as necessary to avoid conceding and giving in too early.

The proposal passed the Public Health & Safety Committee by a 3-2 vote with Becky McElhaney and Jim Wadinski voting against the measure. The full council will take up the matter on Tuesday.