ONEIDA COUNTY, N.Y. (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY) – Governor Kathy Hochul announced a statewide mask mandate set to go into effect on Monday, Dec. 13 and last until Jan. 15. The state’s mask mandate comes just one day after Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente issued a county wide mask mandate also set to begin on Monday.

The state’s mask mandate orders masks must be worn in all private, indoor spaces. Business owners can choose to enforce vaccine requirements in place of the mask requirement, but the Oneida County order says that banquet and function events held at a private indoor space can forego the mask or vaccine requirement as long as temperatures are checked.

Anthony Picente explained what the differences are between the two mandates and which order will be followed. 

“Its not based on a state of emergency as the other ones were in the past or an executive order, so it’s a little bit different, so that’s why we can use our order in that regard. The fact that the governor put this across the state really helps us, though. So, for our intents and purposes, our order’s in place. We’ll follow that one. That’s the one that we’ll enforce when needed – if needed. That’s not saying we’re ignoring the Governor’s order. I support it in the numbers and really on the basis that there needs to be more than just one area doing this, especially when the numbers across upstate are so large,” said Picente.

Picente originally said the county would re-evaluate the mandate Jan. 10, but he now says the county will hold out until Governor Hochul’s Jan. 15 end date.