Eldora Council Cindy Johns

Eldora City Council Member Cindy Johns (left) discusses banning fireworks in Eldora on June 23 while fellow member Melody Hoy looks on.

The City of Eldora is the first town in Hardin County to announce that it will require face masks be worn by those in attendance at city council meetings.

A press release from City Hall confirmed that the masks will be mandatory beginning with Tuesday's 6 p.m. meeting in the Council Chambers. The public can also attend the meeting via electronic conferencing

City Clerk Chandra Kyte said Mayor Dave Dunn is in charge of updating the City's COVID-19 policy. She said it was changed as a result of the increase in cases in Hardin County. The Iowa Department of Human Services reported on Monday that at least 12 students and five staff members at the State Training School for Boys have tested positive for the coronavirus in recent days. According to Greenbelt Home Care/Hardin County Public Health, 139 Hardin County residents have tested positive for the disease since March. Of those, at least 68 have recovered, leaving 71 people infected.

Council member Melody Hoy said that disposable masks will be available for attendees at Tuesday's meeting due to the short notice of the requirement, but masks may not be available at future meetings. The masks for Tuesday's meeting were acquired from Eldora EMS.

Kyte said masks are not required for normal business inside City Hall because of the Plexiglass barriers and social distancing floor markings. Because of the need for social distancing, only 12-15 people will be allowed inside the Council chambers at any given time during meetings. 

In addition to the mask requirement, people who attend meetings will also have their temperature checked before being allowed into meetings and hand sanitizer will be available. 

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