CALGARY -- Just days before its temporary mandatory mask bylaw goes into effect, Calgary council made minor changes to the mandate.

Face coverings will still be required in all indoor public spaces and on transit as of August 1 in Calgary, but the fine for not wearing one is now only $50. Council voted to reduce the fine from $100, though the penalty for business operators who fail to display adequate signage remains $200.

Amendments to the bylaw also include a call for Mayor Naheed Nenshi to write a letter to the province and school boards urging them to come up with a mask policy for schools before classes resume.

Calgary administration will also explore whether schools can be regulated under the city’s bylaw. They’ll report back to council on August 24.

Other municipalities discuss mask mandates

Banff passed a mandatory mask bylaw Monday requiring everyone to wear a face covering while in indoor public spaces, on transit and while outdoors along Banff Ave.

The Town of Okotoks passed the first two readings of its bylaw mandating masks in city buildings. The bylaw won’t fully pass until third reading on August 17.

Bill Robertson

“If the numbers happen to spike, we would bring council back for another council meeting absolutely,” said Okotoks Mayor Bill Robertson.

Okotoks administration will also prepare a bylaw to expand mandatory masks in the event that active COVID-19 cases increase to 15 within the town.

Not all communities are moving forward with a face covering mandate.

Airdrie council decided Tuesday to not require masks at this time.

According to a release from the city, a bylaw will be drafted to mandate masks if and when Airdrie reaches an ‘enhanced status’ with Alberta Health Services.