Face mask policy to begin Saturday in St. Augustine

The City of St. Augustine instituted a mandatory mask policy indoors and in public places where social distancing isn't possible. The order goes into effect Saturday.

ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. — St. Augustine is now the first city in Northeast Florida to mandate the use of face masks.

A new policy requires face coverings to be worn while indoors and when social distancing isn’t possible while in public spaces. There are exceptions based on age and health conditions.

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City commissioners of St. Augustine made the decision Friday morning in an emergency meeting called for by City Manager John Regan.

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The meeting was in response to the “rapid increase of COVID-19 cases” in St. Johns County and in Florida and based on recommendations of the Florida Medical Association.

Residents and business owners also shared their concerns with city leaders for the mandating of masks.

The policy will go into effect at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, June 27 and violators could be fined up to $500, Regan told Action News Jax.

Coronavirus: Mandatory indoor face mask policy approved in St. Augustine