Lee Not Considering Mask Mandates, State Of Emergency For Now

Photo Credit: Gov. Bill Lee / Facebook

The Tennessee Conservative [By Jason Vaughn] –

During a visit to Fall Creek Falls on Tuesday to unveil a new development, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee spoke about his administration’s current plans regarding the Omicron variant and the COVID-19 virus in general.

Lee stated that, at this time, he is not considering reinstating Tennessee’s State of Emergency, which he allowed to expire in November, after almost 20 months of the Lee administration having the emergency powers it granted.

However, Lee stated that if hospital admissions due to the virus rise considerably, he will consider renewing the declaration.

Lee said, “An emergency declaration is a tool that we should use only when we have to.”

However, he continued by saying, “We’re not in a spot where we believe that a state of emergency is necessary, but nothing’s off the table, we track it all the time.”  

In his speech, Lee also continued to promote the vaccine as a tool to keep hospitalizations down due to the virus.

When Lee allowed the near 20-month State of Emergency to expire in November, he warned “Should the state face any future surges, we will consider temporarily reinstating this tool, but in the meantime, we are evaluating opportunities for permanent deregulation.”


The state of emergency is a legal tool that allows the governor to suspend some state laws and obtain federal funding for a situation that has been deemed an emergency.

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As a result of the 3rd Extraordinary Session in late October, House Bill 9075 passed into law in November.  The bill decreased the amount of time a state of emergency may continue under an executive order or proclamation issued by the governor from 60 days to 45 days.

Another bill that passed into law in November (House Bill 9077), set strict standards for how and when a publicly-funded private business or local or state government entity declares a mask mandate for the general public and stated that only city and county mayors may issue mask mandates under these strict standards.

However, the bill did allow for a mask mandate in severe conditions when the governor has declared a state of emergency for Covid-19 and the average 14-day infection rate is at least 1,000 new known infections for every 100,000 residents. If implemented, a mask mandate may not last more than 14 days unless severe conditions still exist.

On Tuesday, Nashville mayor John Cooper’s spokeswoman stated that the city would reinstate a mask mandate in city buildings if Lee declared another state of emergency, which would align with the rights given to Cooper under the new law.


About the Author: Jason Vaughn, Media Coordinator for The Tennessee Conservative  ~ Jason previously worked for a legacy publishing company based in Crossville, TN in a variety of roles through his career.  Most recently, he served as Deputy Directory for their flagship publication. Prior, he was a freelance journalist writing articles that appeared in the Herald Citizen, the Crossville Chronicle and The Oracle among others.  He graduated from Tennessee Technological University with a Bachelor’s in English-Journalism, with minors in Broadcast Journalism and History.  Contact Jason at news@TennesseeConservativeNews.com

8 thoughts on “Lee Not Considering Mask Mandates, State Of Emergency For Now

  • January 6, 2022 at 4:47 pm

    It has been proven by many Doctors and scientists that mask do not work. DO not mandate masks for Tennessee.
    Thank You

  • January 6, 2022 at 5:03 pm

    Read the mask boxes . The paper masks specifically state they do not stop viral infections. Cloth masks don’t work. Bill Lee, don’t get stuck on stupid. Omricon is no threat. The jabs don’t stop anything. Leave us, the people , alone.

  • January 6, 2022 at 5:09 pm

    The media and the government need to let this “pandemic” die. It’s ridiculous how it has been blown out of proportion. This is pure political nonsense.

  • January 6, 2022 at 5:26 pm

    My employer is an out of state government contractor. Am I safe from the mandate under current Tennessee law if the Supreme Court allows them to stand or will I be unemployed?

  • January 6, 2022 at 5:29 pm

    The mask are only for the sheeple who do as the government tells them to do. People with a brain have done research that tells them that the small size of the virus easily passes through masks of all types. Omicron is nothing but the seasonal flu and people die from the flu. They always have and always will. Many deaths reported as covid deaths were flu deaths which were down 97% in 2021. Hospitals get money for reporting covid deaths.

  • January 7, 2022 at 12:50 am

    These so called mandates were a joke the first time and did not make a ounce of difference either way. Why do the same ole stupid stuff over and over and expecting a different outcome?????

  • January 8, 2022 at 9:56 pm

    Lee why don’t you step up and do your job . You are weak . Tennesseans do not want masks, we do not want mandatory vaccinations. You’re beginning to sound like a demorat!

  • January 11, 2022 at 2:08 am

    If a fart can go through a mask, a virus can too. Masks don’t work, plain and simple.


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