Locust Valley Board of Education votes to implement state mandate of masks in schools

The Locust Valley Board of Education voted Tuesday afternoon to implement the state mask mandate.
The decision came after voting on Monday night not to implement a mask mandate, which would have gone against the state.
The mask mandate will be implemented for 90 days.
All but one board member voted in favor of implementing the state mandate.
The board reversed the decision on the advice of a legal counsel.
The legal counsel advised the board that the state health department's health mandate does in fact "hold the weight of the law."
Ed McCarthy is an attorney for the firm that represented the district.
"There is statutory authority for the state Department of Health to issue this emergency regulation," McCarthy said.
The board president pointed to a letter from the state that says if the board defies the mandate, board members could lose their seats and state aid would be withheld.
Earlier on Tuesday morning, Gov. Kathy Hochul said the mandates will not be open ended.
"We'll do it now and we'll assess because there'll be parts of our state where the numbers drop," she said. "The circumstances are going to change in some areas. So, I'll be very flexible in allowing localities to talk to me about what's happening on the ground in their communities."
The Locust Valley District's reversal on the mask mandate follows the Massapequa School District's decision to also implement the state mask mandate.