February 8, 2023 Local Stories in and Around St. Joseph, Illinois

Mayor urges residents to think about neighbors and loved ones during pandemic

St. Joseph Mayor Tami Fruhling-Voges is encouraging residents to wear their masks.

Fruhling-Voges told village board members that a resident called village hall asking what the village was going to do to enforce mask wearing.

Fruhling-Voges said the village really has no enforcement mechanism.

“Our hands are tied here,” she said. “We are not the mask police.”

Fruhling-Voges said she thought local businesses were doing a good job encouraging residents to wear masks.

“All you can do is encourage people to think about what is going on and do what they can to protect their families and their neighbors,” she said. “I see a lot of compliance and people are trying to comply.”

Fruhling-Voges said she knows people are getting COVID-19 fatigue.

“I am just wanting to remind every body to continue to be patient,” she said.

Fruhling-Voges also made a point to say the village supports its businesses and the community. She said she has been working with some business owners to help them find grant money to make ends meet during the pandemic.

“They are trying to keep their businesses afloat and they don’t have half the day to go through grant paperwork,” she said.

Fruhling-Voges urged residents to think about their neighbors and loved ones during this trying time and act appropriately.

“There is nothing we can do to enforce people wearing a mask,” she said. “That is the bottom line.”

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