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Lennox strikes down city-wide mask requirement

Council passes mask requirement in city owned buildings only

By Kelli Bultena

During Monday’s first December Council meeting, Lennox City Council made a motion to pass the second reading of Ordinance #616: Requiring Face Coverings. Council member Chad Reilly spoke in favor of the ordinance, but ultimately the motion failed. The city of Lennox will not require masks within the City of Lennox.

Lennox City Administrator Nathan Vander Plaats introduced the issue by reminding the council that this ordinance was following suit after Sioux Falls’ recent mask mandate. On Tuesday, November 17, the Sioux Falls City Council passed a revised ordinance requiring face coverings in retail businesses and city-owned facilities, with the revision removing any penalty for failure to do so.

Council member Brock Rops said that businesses should be allowed to decide for themselves. Council member Chad Wulf also said that people in his ward have told him they didn’t feel a need for a mask mandate.

Council could agree that they would like a policy to require masks within City buildings only.

Later in the meeting, Resolution 2020-12-14-01 was added and approved. The resolution requires face masks or face coverings in all city-owned buildings and vehicles when six-foot separation is not possible, and encourages individuals to wear face masks when social distancing is not possible.

Effective immediately, if individuals are planning to visit City Hall or any other city building, individuals must wear a mask.

In other business, Council approved reports from the Engineer, City Administrator, Finance Officer as presented. All reports can be viewed online at, under Lennox City Government > Mayor and Council > City Council Meeting Agendas.

The Council approved Ordinance 617: FY 2020 Supplemental Budget.  Council accepted Shawn Grengs’ resignation from the Lennox Park Board.

Vander Plaats said that many individuals noted a need to update the Parks & Recreation policies with more information. Because of that, Vander Plaats added to the document program-specific information and guidance, as well as changes to how equipment and uniforms are distributed. The document has been reviewed by the Park Board. Council approved the updates as presented to Polices and Procedures Title VI: Parks & Recreation.

Council approved membership in the South Dakota Economic Development Professionals Association at the advocate level, which is $1000 annually and is a two year commitment.

The Lennox Fire Department requested an update to their roster of fire fighters. Council approved removing Clint Hostetler and Earl Fischer from the Volunteer Roster.

Council approved a new contract with the Sioux Falls Humane Society for their contracted Animal Control Service.

Council approved the new hire of Steven Hale as Parks & Recreation Manager at $21.00/hour.

Also under personnel, Vander Plaats said that the city must hire a new Water/Wastewater Specialist to fill a vacancy due to the transfer of Brian Lathrop to the Streets Department. Council approved advertising for the position.

Council adjourned in under an hour.

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