Local elected officials came out to help the city of Marysville with their fifth and sixth mask distribution events on Sept. 3.

The city held two distributions that day, one in the afternoon and one in the evening, at the Marysville Library.

As COVID-19 continues to spread in Snohomish County, and the nation at large, local officials hope to help those who want to remain safe with cloth masks.

"Our first events were just for low-income individuals, but these ones are for everyone," said Jenniffer Brown, emergency preparedness coordinator with the city of Marysville.

She said the mask distributions have been "well attended" so far.

The city of Marysville received thousands of masks from Washington state that ultimately came from the March federal coronavirus relief bill.

Marysville Mayor Jon Nehring, Washington state Rep. Emily Wicks, who represents the 38th District that includes south Marysville and Tulalip, and U.S. Rep. Rick Larsen came out to help distribute the masks on Sept. 3.

"We've been really fortunate to have the resources to hand out to businesses and to individuals," said Nehring.

"It's a good use of the CARES [relief bill] dollars given to us when they push it down to the local level where we're able to connect with people and get it to those in need," he said.

The state government has used those funds to procure supplies for local jurisdictions to hand out.

"It is definitely the role of the state government to educate people and give them the resources needed," said Wicks. "Being able to provide that has been an honor and we're going to continue to make sure, along with the federal government, that those resources are provided."

Larsen said although coronavirus case numbers are dropping locally, continuing with safety measures is still important.

"If you look at the numbers of April, we're at the same numbers as then, and we were in total panic level," said Larsen.

"Even though the numbers are coming down we're still at that level, so we need to continue to social distance and wear masks," he said.

Larsen said federal funds have helped in a number of way and with protective supplies, however more is likely needed now.

"There's probably more that we can do with personal protective equipment, but also more we can do help our small businesses, our schools, our tribal governments with funding," he said.

In May, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a second federal coronavirus relief bill, known as the HEROES Act, but it has not passed the Senate.

"People are rightly frustrated that Congress hasn't stepped forward with another round of COVID relief," said Larsen.

Marysville is planning additional mask distribution events that will be held in the future, either in late October or early November and another in January, said Brown.

"The understanding is that masks that people have received earlier in the year will likely need replacement as we move forward through the year," said Brown.

If they need masks Marysville residents can also ask the city directly, said Brown.

"Anyone who doesn't have a mask and needs one can always reach out to the Marysville Emergency Management department," she said.

Brown wanted to thank her Community Emergency Response Team volunteers who continue to help with mask distribution.

 

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