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County Commissioners Slam Health Officer in Letter About Mask Mandate

Dr. Robert Einterz, St. Joseph County Health Officer

ST. JOSEPH COUNTY, Ind. — Two St. Joseph County Commissioners slammed the county Health Officer, Dr. Robert Eniterz, in a scathing letter regarding his latest public health order. REAL News Michiana obtained the letter through a public records request on Wednesday. It is dated April 6th.

The letter, referring to Public Health Order 1-2021, claims Dr. Einterz went against an agreement with the Mayors of South Bend and Mishawaka and the President of the County Commissioners, by making a unilateral decision as an unelected official. The health order extends a county-wide mask mandate until May 27th. You can read the full order below.

“It is troubling and disconcerting that you unilaterally decided to act contrary to the agreement that was reached between you and the local officials. It is also disappointing that you acted without formally consulting the working group of elected officials to explain why you chose to disregard the input you asked for, received, and agreed with.” The letter, signed by Commissioners Derek Dieter and Deb Fleming, said.

“Additionally, you failed to engage your board collectively in this decision. The county Commissioners work hard to make sure that they appoint qualified members to the board. It is our understanding that you did not consult all your Board Members prior to making your decision. The Board, as your governing body, should have been consulted…” The letter continued. “It is time for the people to have control in this matter and not be dictated to by your unilateral actions.”

RNM reached out to Dr. Einterz and was told he was not in the office. RNM left a message and was assured Dr. Einterz would be returning our call.

The full letter signed by Commissioners Dieter and Fleming can be read below.

As reported by RNM in February, Dr. Einterz recently settled a lawsuit for abusing his power by issuing public health orders in the summer and fall of 2020. You can read that full story here.

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