MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — Brattleboro has joined Burlington and South Burlington in requiring people to wear face masks in establishments in the Vermont communities, but the city of Barre is recommending masks rather than requiring them.

Barre Mayor Lucas Herring said he consulted with both the city's police and fire chiefs and they felt enforcement could be difficult.

“At this point I don’t see that it’s necessary,” Herring said during a Tuesday city council meeting.

But the Brattleboro Select Board approved the mask requirement by a vote of 5-0.

“We are going to hear about it one way or another,” Select Board Chairman Tim Wessel said during the Tuesday meeting. “That’s our job.”

Republican Gov. Phil Scott said Friday that his order encourages face masks in public, but doesn’t require them, and that municipalities could implement stricter requirements of their own.

On Monday, the city councils in Burlington and South Burlington both passed resolutions requiring masks.

Retail stores were allowed to reopen to in-person shoppers on Monday at 25% of capacity.

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CORRECTIONS CAMP

The Vermont Department of Corrections’ work camp in St. Johnsbury is going to he holding 10 inmates returning to the state from Mississippi to ensure they are not infected with the virus that causes COVID-19.

The inmates will be held at the Caledonia Community Work Camp after returning to the state for a variety of reasons that include nearing the end of their sentences.

The Caledonian Record reports none of the inmates have tested positive for the virus, but, as is required for anyone coming to Vermont, they must complete a quarantine.

Corrections’ Al Cormier says that after a week they will be tested for the virus and if found negative they will be moved to other facilities.

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GYM SUED

The owner of a Rutland fitness center who had moved the equipment outside after a judge ordered him to close amid the coronavirus outbreak has again been ordered to shut down.

Attorney General T.J. Donovan told WCAX-TV that the equipment needs to go back inside and owner Sean Manovill needs to follow the order and close Club Fitness of Vermont or face consequences.

Manovill said in a social media post that he had been sued and fined into submission. He said the facility was closed on Wednesday.

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THE NUMBERS

On Wednesday the Vermont Department of Health reported no new cases of the coronavirus, leaving the total approaching 950. The total number of deaths remained at 54.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

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