New York mask rule back in effect — for now; appeals court grants stay on COVID-19 rule


New York Gov. Kathy Hochul’s indoor mask rule will remain in effect for a while longer after an appeals judge granted a stay late Tuesday blocking a lower court’s ruling against the COVID-19 mandate.

The volley of decisions will likely cause whiplash, especially at Long Island schools that started to relax their mask policies after a State Supreme Court judge in Nassau County struck down Ms. Hochul’s mandate on Monday.

Some county officials and parents urged Ms. Hochul, a Democrat, to relent after the lower court’s ruling, but she vowed to reinstate the rule, citing the threat from the omicron surge.

The decision by appellate Justice Robert J. Miller allows her mandate to remain in place temporarily, pending a hearing on Friday.

Ms. Hochul late Tuesday commended state Attorney General Letitia James “for her defense of the health and safety of New Yorkers and applauded the Appellate Division, Second Department for siding with common sense and granting an interim stay to keep our state’s important masking regulations in place.”

The back and forth in New York is the latest flashpoint in the COVID-19 mandate wars. Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin issued an executive order after his inauguration this month that lets parents choose whether to mask their school children, prompting some school districts to sue the new Republican administration.

For more information, visit The Washington Times COVID-19 resource page.

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