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Pocatello Mayor Talks Masking

The citizens of Pocatello have been vocal about their opinions on a public mask mandate. On Tuesday, the Pocatello City Council discussed whether to call a meeting to consider a mask mandate, and whether they should consider one in the future if COVID-19 numbers become worse in Pocatello or Bannock County.  

In an Interview with BYU-Idaho Radio, Mayor Blad gave us the gist of what happened in the meeting.  

“The decision from the discussion was that we will not mandate masks in the city of Pocatello at this time. We may in the future, depending on what the city council wants to do,” Mayor Blad said. 

He said there was a second part to the discussion, where they talked about specific numbers. 

“The discussion turned to the second part of the motion, which was 30 or more cases for three days. And if you’re paying attention to the case count in Bannock County, we are now at day two for 30 or more cases,” Mayor Blad warned. 

Even with those numbers, the council voted to not have another meeting. The mayor said that regardless of the numbers, he will not call another meeting unless the council asks him to. 

Mayor Blad said the health experts encourage masks, but even better is for people to get vaccinated. 

“The hospitals and medical professionals for the most part are saying a mask mandate is necessary to help contain this and help overcome this. Really what they’re saying is they’d prefer not to have a mask mandate but prefer everyone to get vaccinated. That has proven to be safe and to work. They say that every hospitalization and death from here on out is preventable,” 

Mayor Blad has been vaccinated himself and encourages masks. He is willing to have businesses point fingers at him to protect the business owners from losing potential customers in protest of required masking in buildings.