No mask mandate in Soldotna


The Soldotna City Council on Wednesday axed a proposal to require people to wear nose and mouth coverings when in buildings open to the public.

An ordinance offered by Council members Pamela Parker and Jordan Chilson received hundreds of comments from the public. Health professionals lobbied for it, saying the medical sector could become overwhelmed if the virus spreads more quickly in Soldotna, while members of the public testified against the mandate and said it would kill the economy of the town of 4,700, which is situated close to the no-mandate City of Kenai. The testimony ran 4-to-1 against the Soldotna mandate.

Some private businesses already have mask rules but the sponsors of the ordinance wanted widespread mandates to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

While the Kenai Peninsula cities of Homer and Kenai do not have mask mandates, Seward implemented one last month and is the only city on the Kenai Peninsula to have done so. In Palmer, in the Mat-Su Valley, the proposal was nixed after hours of testimony, predominantly against it. The mayor of Anchorage has mandated masks for those in public places, and Juneau is a masked community, while Sitka is not.

Presumed president-elect Joe Biden, while running for office, said that he would implement a national mask mandate and criticized President Donald Trump for not doing so, but on Friday he softened his stance, saying he would “ask” Americans to wear masks for 100 days, after he is sworn in as president.


  1. Good for Soldotna.
    Mask mandates are overkill. Repeated claims that the healthcare system will be overwhelmed have not panned out, regardless of the steps taken. When reality proves your predictions wrong, you must examine the models you used and find out why they did not work. That does not appear to be happening, and dire predictions are still being made.
    If you choose to wear a mask, fine. If you want to require masks to enter your business, that is good too. However, it is your choice to do so, not a mandate imposed by a select few.
    If only other cities and states put the mask issue to the public, instead of having a few elites that are trying to make themselves look better by “saving lives.” you might find out that the average person is aware of the risks, but does not want to wear a mask anyway.

    • Except the mask with holes 200 to 1,000 times larger than the 0.1 micron-sized virus does nothing to reduce the risk, which is why we’ve never worn face coverings in the past during the flu season, even a bad one like 2018 when more than 80,000 people died.

  2. One thing I would like to point out about mask mandates is the illogical basis for their implementation.

    Aside from the dubious scientific merits of the widespread public wearing of masks to reduce disease transmission (the overwhelming medical consensus before March 2020 was that it was almost totally ineffective), their is the irrational argument made by proponents of these mandates that those who do not wear masks endanger the public at large. Yet EVERY action taken by individuals can be said to endanger the public at large, such as being on the roads at the same time, or every passing person or vehicle to one’s home potentially being a criminal or a murderer. If you want me, who refuses to wear a mask, to stay away from public settings, then it is only logical for me to demand that you, and everyone else, stay off the roads every time I want to drive anywhere —- you know, because you are potentially endangering me (and at a much greater risk than that of catching the Wuhan Flu while out in public).

    • You do understand that there are myriad laws governing the use of roadways, the vehicles driven upon them, and those who drive the aforementioned vehicles? If anything you are actually making the case for laws mandating masks.

      • No, Steve, you are wrong. Regardless of the number of laws that (supposedly) regulate driving, it is an inarguable fact that the mere presence of other drivers on the road while one is driving is a danger to each and every driver. Or are you trying to claim that traffic accidents do not happen?
        Hey, on that note, let’s pass a leftist-oriented law that simply bans traffic accidents. Yeah, that’s the ticket! 30,000+ traffic deaths a year wiped out at the stroke of a pen! Why did nobody ever think of that before?

        • Are you actually arguing that there aren’t laws regulating driving or that they aren’t in place to prevent accidents? What a silly and ignorant argument. What do you think speed limits are, stop signs, restrictions on driving age, drunk driving laws, the lines painted on the road, tires are regulated, how vehicles are constructed is regulated, seatbelts, the windshield, turn signals, brake lights…the list of laws and regulations in place to make vehicles and their use safe is too voluminous to list here.
          The laws that exist that regulate driving are in place to protect people from accidents, to lessen accidents, and to lessen the damage caused by accidents. I can’t believe anyone would take the position you have taken here. In short they have already thought of that before, that’s why there aren’t more deaths on the roadway then there currently are.
          You see your argument that they should pass laws to make driving safe for you is specious at best, because these laws already exist. Your argument actually supports government mandating masks to help protect others in public places. If you were to take a little shred of personal responsibility for your actions maybe you wouldn’t need government to tell you what to do, sadly you are the reason some people think we need a mask mandate.

          • No worries Jeff, you no doubt realize how repeating somebody else’s flawed analogy now makes no sense and you can in no way defend such a poorly conceived thought. Honestly I’m surprised you stuck with it as long as you did.

          • No, Steve, that’s NOT what Jefferson is arguing, as he’s already pointed out. It’s so much easier to attack an opposing stance when you distort it.

      • I don’t have to engage in driving, but breathing is necessary for life and an inalienable right from God.

  3. Masks shouldn’t be mandated by government, people should be smart enough to understand basic hygiene and how during a global pandemic some small steps can make an impact. Sadly, as we’ve seen, some people are simply not intelligent enough to understand basic hygiene or how taking a little personal accountability can help. Those who don’t wear a mask or do so incorrectly show themselves for who and what they are.

    • The real kicker are all the mindless idiots who are wearing masks while out on a hiking trail, alone, or while driving in their cars. Can you say “security blanket”?

    • Lifelong republican and Alaskan. You nailed it brother. Alaska is sure showing it’s 5th from bottom education ranking these days!

    • ” Those who don’t wear a mask or do so incorrectly show themselves for who and what they are.”

      Fellow humans?

    • I am smart enough to know a mask with holes 200 to 1,000 times larger than a 0.1 micron virus will do nothing to stop it. Like throwing a handful of sand at a chainlink fence. Also, to wear a mask correctly would require you start with a sterile mask (not one you pull out of your pocket or grab off the dash of your car), which you place on your face with sterile hands. The first time you touch it, you need to discard it and replace it with another sterile mask with sterile hands. If you cough or sneeze, you need to replace it. If moisture builds-up inside the mask, you need to replace it. Get off your insufferable, virtue-signaling, “superior” intelligence high horse.

  4. I cannot wait to pick up some cheap real estate down there. 2021 is gonna be great.

    You know it’s true.

  5. In their latest effort at fearmongering and propaganda, The Anchorage Daily News has reprinted an article supposedly dispelling ‘misinformation” surrounding the Wuhan Flu.

    They are really going over-the-top in their efforts to silence any debate over the facts relating to the Wuhan Flu, or any questioning of all the mandates and official (over)reactions to this very mild pandemic. It is only a weak and/or fallacious argument or position that cannot tolerate debate or dissent.

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