MALIBU— At the Malibu City Council’s August 10 meeting, the council voted 4-1 to consider, at a future meeting, implementing an emergency ordinance that would allow the fining of those not wearing masks in public.

Mayor Mikke Pierson requested that the ordinance to mandate mask-wearing be considered at the meeting. Since the vote was successful, the ordinance will in fact be presented for implementation in the near future.

The ordinance would require, “all individuals, both residents and visitors, to wear a face covering whenever they are in public spaces within the Malibu city limits.” A fee, if included in the ordinance, would be based on similar citation orders in Hermosa Beach and West Hollywood.

Nearby, the city of Santa Monica has implemented citations for those not wearing masks, beginning at $100 for a first time violation, $250 for a second violation, and $500 for a third violation. Santa Monica has so far issued three citations. West Hollywood’s violations begin at $250 for a first-time citation and up to $5,000 for a fourth citation.

Discussion of the ordinance during the City Council’s virtual meeting centered on whether or not the ordinance would be implemented too late, as many already know the importance of wearing face masks.

Former Mayor and current Council member Karen Farrer said that she has not received any emails against face masks, but has received many emails wondering why so many residents are not wearing face masks.

Council member Rick Mullen, who voted against the ordinance said,

“Everyone does understand the recommended course of action for personal defensive measures… I think it’s a little bit of an overreach to also have a city of Malibu mask ordinance.”

Council member Jefferson Wagner questioned the reality of enforcing a mask mandate and fines, but supported the measure as a positive influence in regard to COVID-19.