SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Saratoga County’s Chairman of the Board of Supervisors, Theodore Kusnierz, Jr. said the county will not be enforcing the states mask mandate. Kusnierz said the county’s limited public health resources are being used to get vaccines and boosters to the community.

He said public safety resources would not be diverted to enforce the mandate and mask breaks for children would not be enforced either.

“Our public health team is a dedicated group of healthcare professionals whose job is to educate the public on how they can best protect themselves from communicable diseases and viruses, such as COVID-19.  Local Health Departments are not policing agencies,” Kusnierz said Monday.

County health departments are already stretched too thin, Kusnierz said. He called out Governor Kathy Hochul for not asking counties for input before putting the mandate into effect. “Governor Hochul would know this, had she consulted with county leaders, but, just as her predecessor, she did not,” he said.

“The best way to protect the health and safety of Saratoga County residents, families, schools, and businesses is to continue to focus public health resources on rapidly providing booster vaccinations to the public, which our Public Health team continues to do,” Kusnierz said. “We will continue our ongoing education efforts to all entities throughout the County in our fight against COVID-19.   A vaccination may save a life; issuing a fine only helps to fuel more division in our community.”