Gov. Sisolak: Number of businesses in noncompliance of mask directive is ‘disappointing and unacceptable’

Nevada Gov. Sisolak said Friday that the number of businesses found to be in noncompliance of the face covering directive is “disappointing and unacceptable,” according to Fox New 5.

According to a news release, the Division of Industrial Relations Occupation Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) observed 204 businesses on July 2. Of these businesses, 49% complied with the face covering requirements.

Fifty percent of bars and restaurant bar areas visited by the department were found to be in compliance, according to the release. The remaining establishments, including automobile sales and maintenance, gyms, hair and nail establishments and tattoo shops, demonstrated 61% rate of compliance.

Since enforcement of the directive began, the overall business compliance rate is 85% in Northern Nevada and 65% in Southern Nevada.

According to OSHA, business sectors with the highest rates of statewide noncompliance include:

  • Home improvement stores: 61% noncompliance
  • Bars: 48% noncompliance
  • Grocery stores: 40% noncompliance
  • Casino hotels: 33% noncompliance

Gov. Sisolak issued the below statement in regards to the numbers provided by OSHA:

The noncompliance numbers reported by State officials are disappointing and unacceptable a week after the face coverings directive was issued.

To the businesses who are complying, I want to say thank you from the bottom of my heart on behalf of all Nevada. You’re protecting our businesses, our health, our jobs, our economy and your industry.

To those businesses operating in violation of the directive by not implementing safe social distancing and face covering protocols, you’re not only jeopardizing people’s health but you’re also jeopardizing your fellow businesses, your industry, and our overall economy.

I am grateful for the strong partnerships state and local governments who will be taking aggressive, broad-based and swift enforcement actions throughout this holiday weekend.

As I have expressed before, I have growing concerns with our current COVID-19 data trends. If these concerning reports on noncompliance continue, I will not hesitate to take swift and decisive actions next week directed at targeted industries or areas that are experiencing concerning COVID-19 trends and non-compliance.

According to OSHA, follow up visits to businesses where violations were observed during the initial survey will be conducted within a 5-day window of the initial visit. If a violation is found during the follow up visit, OSHA says a notice of citation and penalty will be issued.

The maximum penalty of $134,940 can be assessed to an employer that willfully violates the provisions of the directive, according to OSHA.

In addition, OSHA notes that a notice will be provided to the business indicating that in the event of future noncompliance, officials may issue an order requiring the business to cease all activity at the business location during this state of emergency under NRS 618.545(1) until the business has established and implemented operating procedures to comply with the requirements.

Earlier this week, Nevada Health Response announced that it had created phone lines for residents to report businesses are not following safety guidelines established by the governor’s office, such as wearing a mask or maintaining social distancing.

To report a non-compliant business through the state, call (702) 486-9020 or (775) 688-3700.

Complaints can be filed with Nevada OSHA by calling (702) 486-9020 in Southern Nevada and (775) 688-3700 in Northern Nevada. To file a complain with OSHA online, visit: https://www.osha.gov/pls/osha7/eComplaintForm.html.