ST. PAUL -- Fourteen Minnesota counties fall under new C-D-C guidelines that recommend children and even vaccinated people wear masks indoors where COVID is surging, apparently due to the delta variant.

Governor Tim Walz said Friday in Mankato.

"I think in the state you will not see a statewide mask mandate.  One of the things is, I do not possess that emergency power to do so, but I think you'll see local folks make that (decision).

Walz does have the option to declare another peacetime emergency if deemed appropriate.

Commissioner Jan Malcolm indicated Monday the state Health Department will be saying more in coming days about whether they'll issue guidance for school districts, where classes resume in about a month.

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The C-D-C recommended Tuesday that everyone in K-12 schools wear masks this fall.

"We really strongly encourage people to follow those recommendations but, at the present time, those are not in the context of mandates."

Malcolm:

"Unfortunately even in Minnesota, where we have a higher level of vaccination than some other states, we have not reached a point of herd immunity, and in some parts of Minnesota the vaccination rate's quite a bit lower than the state average."

Malcolm says there's still a lot of opportunities for the virus to infect people, particularly if they're not vaccinated.

COUNTIES FALLING UNDER NEW CDC GUIDANCE:

Cottonwood, Dodge, Isanti, Lake, Lake of the Woods, Mille Lacs, Pope, Redwood, Roseau, Scott, Swift, Traverse, Waseca and Wilkin

This story is courtesy of the Minnesota News Network. 

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