On the heels of Gov. Roy Cooper’s announcement Friday to rescind the state’s mask order, Sanford Mayor Chet Mann also rescinded the city’s order that’s been in effect since Nov. 25.

Cooper’s Executive Order 215 acts on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that states vaccinated people can assemble without face coverings, except in settings like schools and health care facilities. Mass gathering limits and social distancing requirements have also been lifted.

The state health department still recommends masks and social distancing for those who have not been vaccinated.

Local businesses like Hugger Mugger Brewing have announced policy changes. The downtown brewery said guests may now choose to wear a mask if they wish, and seating at the front bar will now be open. Employees there may still choose to wear a mask.

Also this week, the county health department announced it is now registering children age 12-15 with parental consent to receive a COVID-19 vaccination. The change comes as the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved emergency use authorization for the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for use in children 12 and up.

Parents interested in registering their children for the COVID-19 vaccine are asked to submit a pre-registration form available online at leecountync.gov/covid19.

Once a pre-registration form and parental consent form are submitted, staff will contact the individual to complete the registration process and assign the individual to the next available vaccine clinic or appointment. Parents must accompany the minor to the vaccination appointment and proof of age will be required.