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Summit County state senators vote to end mask mandates, as hospitalizations rise statewide

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah State Senate passed a joint resolution in a party-line 22-5 vote that would terminate the mask mandates in Summit and Salt Lake Counties on the opening day of the legislative session.

Both Ron Winterton (R) and John Johnson (R), who represent Summit County, voted to overturn the public health orders.

The bill now moves to the Utah House of Representatives. Joint resolutions do not require Governor Spencer Cox’s signature to go into effect.

Senate President Stuart Adams was unmasked and conducting business as normal, despite testing positive for COVID-19 twice on Tuesday, per the Salt Lake Tribune.

The Utah Department of Health (UDOH) reported 715 COVID-19 hospitalizations on Wednesday, a new high since the pandemic began. 202 of those patients are currently in an intensive care unit.

In Summit County, where vaccination rates are higher when compared to the rest of the state, 4 people have been hospitalized with COVID-19 in the past week, 3 of which were unvaccinated.

“The House Majority Caucus is in widespread agreement that mask mandates are not the answer. However, we are still looking at the resolution and discussing a variety of options,” a spokesperson for House Speaker Brad Wilson told FOX 13.

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