Titus County judge says mask wearing ‘small price to pay to conduct business, live a relatively normal life’

WATCH: Titus County judge says mask wearing ‘small price to pay to conduct business'

(KLTV) - Titus County Judge Brian Lee reports new cases of COVID-19 among his county’s residents, and is asking them to cooperate to help curtail the spread.

Lee reported 10 new cases, for a cumulative total 809 in the county, on Tuesday.

“Today the County and City will post a letter to our business community with a strong request to enforce masking for employees and patrons. We will follow up with personal visits to the food service businesses,” Lee posted. “This is step ONE to try to get county wide VOLUNTARY immediate cooperation.”

Lee joined Kayla Lyons on East Texas Now Wednesday to discuss what he hopes to see happen in Titus County. He expressed that the best place to get information is not from social media, but from health experts.

“Despite what the naysayers want to say about the masks, I’m not listening to those that use Facebook as their encyclopedia. I’m using our medical community, our local health authority, the CEO at our hospital and all the other medical experts across this state and across this country. If they tell me that the masks are beneficial, that’s what we’re going to try.”Lee said.

He had some ideas for business owners to help keep businesses open in Titus County.

“Get your employees wearing a mask. Ask your patrons to wear a mask before they walk in the door. In fact, make it mandatory for them to wear a mask if they come into your establishment. It’s a small price to pay to conduct business and live a relatively normal life,” he said.

Later in the interview, in that same vein, he added, ‘Hey businesses, please implement some rules in your own establishment. Whether that’s a restaurant, a big box store or a small store or grocery store. Join in the cause. Let’s work together here in Titus County.”

Lee also said people often want to know what the recovery rate is but he doesn’t focus on the recovery rate.

“That’s for the people that want to downplay this and think that we don’t have a problem,” Lee said.

Lee calls wearing masks a “relatively minor inconvenience for all of us” and he says other steps that might be more inconvenient include stay at home order and shutting down businesses.

“Those are the high-level things that can really cramp your style and really hurt commerce. Wearing a mask, my goodness, there’s enough people wearing masks that nobody’s going to make fun of you just because you look a little strange to yourself. Give it a try. Put a lot of the other people in this community at ease and wear a mask. Make it comfortable for people to come to your restaurant, to come to your place of business and show them we’re all in this tklogether.”

Lee also says they will be making personal visits to businesses and establishments asking them if they can leave them a copy of the letter and asking them to read it over and voluntarily cooperate with step one.

“There’s no fines. There’s no jail time associated with step one. We don’t want to escalate it to that in step two or step three.”

Titus County judge says mask wearing ‘small price to pay to conduct business, live a relatively normal life’

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