Oregon Announces Plan to Lift Indoor Mask Mandates
On February 7, 2022, Oregon state officials announced that the state intends to lift its indoor mask mandate for public places and schools no later than March 31, 2022. Oregon may consider lifting the indoor mask requirement for public places other than schools earlier than March 31, 2022, if covid-related hospitalizations continue to drop and reach approximately 400 occupied beds statewide. Oregon will not lift the mask requirements for schools prior to March 31, 2022, as the school districts need time to prepare for the change according to state officials.
State officials announced the intent to lift the indoor mask requirements in conjunction with the Oregon Health Authority adopting a permanent administrative rule containing the requirements. The current indoor mask requirements for public spaces was contained in a temporary emergency rule which was set to expire on February 8, 2022. In Oregon, temporary emergency administrative rules are only effective for up to 180 days and cannot be renewed. Thus, in order to continue the indoor mask requirements past February 8, 2022, OHA was required to adopt a permanent rule containing the requirements.
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