The Central District Health Board Friday downgraded COVID-19 protection orders for Ada and Valley counties from mandate to "strong recommendation." The board’s vote to change its health order was unanimous.
Despite the change, the health board continues to urge residents to wear masks when six feet of distance from others outside the household is not possible, avoid crowds or gatherings of more than 50 people and get a vaccine as soon as available.
The new health order will remain in place until the state’s 65-and-older population has had time to become fully vaccinated, and the district’s two-week average case rate is less than 30 per 100,000 residents, according to a district announcement.
The health order requiring masks and placing limits on gathering size had been in place for Ada County since June.
The City of Boise Friday issued an emergency health order requiring masks when in public, and prohibiting gatherings of 50 or more people. Businesses in Boise are required to adhere to the health order in order to stay open. Children under two and removing masks while eating are among several exceptions that remain in place.
The state’s Republican delegation applauded Central District Health for making its change.
“It’s taken too long, but we all are thankful that the CDH Board came to understand what our Caucus Members have understood for a long time, that we must believe in personal responsibility, not government mandates,” said majority caucus chair Rep. Megan Blanksma (R-Hammett) in a statement.
As of Feb. 7, Central District Health showed a two-week average daily case rate of 19.64 per 100,000 residents in Ada County, and a 30.10 rate in Valley County.
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