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Ingham County health officer says COVID-19 rules will remain in effect

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The Ingham County Health Department will continue enforcing its mask and quarantine orders for schools and day cares despite several local departments rescinding their orders amid confusion over the state budget.

That budget, which takes effect Friday, includes boilerplate language that threatens to pull state funding for health departments that require masks for children.

But Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer says that language is unenforceable and unconstitutional.

Ingham County Health Officer Linda Vail ordered people over four years old to wear masks inside schools using a directive that took effect after Labor Day. In a press release Friday, Vail confirmed that those rules will remain in effect.

“After consulting with legal counsel, it is now clear that the Health Departments retain the authority to issue and enforce their emergency orders,” the news release said.

The Barry-Eaton District Health Department repealed its school mask mandate Thursday, citing concerns about the state budget language.

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