Last week Governor Greg Abbott announced that Texas would be reopening 100% doing away with their mask mandate and other COVID-19 related restrictions. Yesterday (03-11-22) Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt issued an executive order that would remove any restrictions on live events across the state and he repealed the mask mandate for state buildings. Oklahoma never had a statewide mask mandate, instead it was left up to each individual county and city to decide what they wanted to do. Which Includes Lawton, Fort Sill.

With more and more states doing away with some, if not all of their mask mandates and restrictions we're all wondering when our local mandate in Lawton will expire? It's kind of a grey area. Originally the city council said that the mask mandate would be in place for as long as Oklahoma was in a state of emergency. Later it was suggested that it remain in effect until the number of positive cases drop to a level of 1.43 cases per 100k. However, no really clear number or decision was made, at least that I'm aware of. I'm not too sure what the plan is, as far as exactly when the mandate will be lifted. Hopefully we'll get some definitive answers from the council sometime soon, I think we'd all like to know what's going on and what the plan is.

The Lawton city council meets on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of the month, unless a special session is requested. So maybe coming up at the next scheduled council meeting on Tuesday, March 23rd (03-23-21) they'll discuss this further and give us a clear answer about when we can expect the mask mandate to be lifted. Who knows they may repeal it that same day. As you can image this has started a huge debate, not only in Lawton but statewide. Some health care professionals and politicians think it's too soon to loosen up on the mandates and restrictions. They fear that doing so would create another wave or extend the pandemic even further. Others say it's time and we should reopen as soon as possible now that we have a vaccine and it's becoming more available. So what do you think? Should we repeal the mandatory mask mandate in Lawton? Take the poll below and let us know your opinion:

LOOK: Answers to 30 common COVID-19 vaccine questions

While much is still unknown about the coronavirus and the future, what is known is that the currently available vaccines have gone through all three trial phases and are safe and effective. It will be necessary for as many Americans as possible to be vaccinated in order to finally return to some level of pre-pandemic normalcy, and hopefully these 30 answers provided here will help readers get vaccinated as soon they are able.