Mary Esther approves first local mask mandate

Staff reports
Northwest Florida Daily News

The city of Mary Esther has become the first local municipality to enact an ordinance requiring individuals to wear face coverings while in business establishments.

The emergency ordinance was adopted during a special City Council meeting Wednesday.

The ordinance does include certain exceptions; however, it also imposes noncriminal infractions with associated fines for non-compliance. The ordinance will take effect July 31.

The extra time will allow business owners time to secure and post proper signage and will sunset 60 days after it goes into effect unless the council extends or rescinds it.

The Okaloosa County Commission on Tuesday discussed mandating mask usage but did not implement a mandate. Instead, businesses in Okaloosa County will be required to post their mask policies outside.

A complete copy of Mary Esther’s ordinance is available from the City Clerk’s Office and will be posted on the city’s website at

For more information, call the city at 850-243-3566.