Health department handling mask complaints

SIDNEY — Reports of local residents not following Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine’s order to wear face coverings when in public are being handled by the Sidney-Shelby County Health Department.

According to Kent Topp, director of environmental health, each phone call received about the mask/face covering order is followed up.

“When we get a phone call, we follow up with an email to the business,” said Topp. “We’ve gone out with repeat ones (complaints).”

If a liquor license is involved, said Topp and there have been multiple complaints, the issue is sent to the Ohio Investigative Unit, Ohio Department of Public Safety. Then they may or may not issue a citation.”

Topp said some of the complaints come from workers who say their business isn’t following the mask guidelines. Others are from patrons who say the guidelines aren’t being followed by the business’ employees.

“More businesses are following the mask rules,” said Topp, who added it’s hard for some to get comfortable about wearing masks.

“There were announcements at the Junior Fair reminding people to wear their masks,” said Topp. The health department had worked with the Shelby County Fair Board and Junior Fair Board to ensure a safe week for the junior fair members competing at the fair.