Rutherford County Mayor Bill Ketron acknowledges that his decision to extend the county’s face covering order was not an easy one.
“I struggled with my decision for a long time,” said Ketron, noting that the internal battle lasted almost up until “crunch time” for the order to expire. “This is not something I take lightly.”
Ketron said he put much thought into the extension, consulting the other mayors in the jurisdictions within the County, reviewing feedback from the public on social media and other public forums, speaking to colleagues and family members, and considering the latest available data. The thing that ultimately swayed his decision was just that…data.
“Just shortly after we imposed the face covering order, we began to see a trend that is impossible to ignore,” he said. “At the end of July, the number of recovered cases began to outnumber active cases for the first time since COVID-19 reared its ugly head. This is a trend that we continue to see today.”
“Many of you have expressed how inconvenient and uncomfortable the masks can be and I do not disagree, but what we are doing is making a difference in our County. The data supports our efforts and the positive changes are just too significant to ignore. I also realize that regardless of what direction the County takes, half of our constituency will be pleased and the other half will be displeased.”
“These are tough times we are in,” said Ketron. “I know businesses are hurting, members of our community are frustrated, you are tired, you are angry, and in some cases, outraged. Please know that I will continue to monitor our situation locally from all aspects to make the most informed and considerate decisions with the health and safety of our citizens and visitors in mind. I want us to move forward, but we have to do so responsibly. ”
The Rutherford County Face Covering Order was extended through September 30, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. CDT in accordance with Governor Lee’s Executive Order 59.