RED DEER -- Blackfalds council has approved a mandatory face covering bylaw. Effective Nov. 30, face coverings will be mandatory in all indoor public spaces and public transportation within the town limits.

Mayor Richard Poole and Deputy Mayor Rebecca Stendie both expressed their frustrations in the provincial government’s lack of a province-wide mandate.

“I think that the transferred responsibility by the provincial government in their avoidance in giving Albertans a standardized masked bylaw is deplorable,” said Deputy Mayor Rebecca Stendie. “Seeing as more than three-quarters of the population is now under a mandatory mask bylaw of one kind or another, it makes sense that we would try to be consistent with our expectations of our residents and follow suit.”

“I do feel this should have been a provincial responsibility, not one that was downloaded to the municipality,” said Poole. “If I am going to tell my grandchild that they must put on a mask, then I should have a mask on to protect the people around me. There are businesses out there that want this, but they don’t want to be the bad guy.”

Anyone who violates the bylaw is subject to a fine of $100 or more. The bylaw is temporary and will be reviewed in January.

Red Deer city council approved a mandatory face covering bylaw on Monday. It also comes into effect on Nov. 30.

More information is available on the Town of Blackfalds website.