NATIONAL

Counties In St. Louis Area Imposing Mask Mandate

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(AP) – More Missouri counties in the region around St. Louis are imposing mandates requiring the use of face masks as coronavirus cases and hospitalizations surge.

The move comes amid an unsuccessful campaign by health officials in that area to get Gov. Mike Parson to require masks statewide. Jefferson County, just south of St. Louis, is the latest to adopt a mask mandate. Neighboring Franklin County passed a mask order last week, and Boone County adopted a similar requirement earlier this week.

Also this week, St. Charles County officials ordered an 11 p.m. closing time for bars and restaurants. On Thursday, state officials reported 4,471 new confirmed cases, bringing the total to 287,263. Since the pandemic started, 3,808 people have died of COVID-19.

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