Measure on masking in youth sports clears House committee

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Legislation that has cleared a Pennsylvania House committee would give school districts the authority to decide whether student athletes must wear masks while playing.

The Republican-controlled committee approved the measure on a party-line vote.

It would give “exclusive authority” to schools, recreational clubs and similar groups to set masking policy for youth athletes.

Republican state lawmakers have promised to mount a legislative response to Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf’s statewide mask mandate for schools. But so far, there has been no movement by the GOP on a wider mask mandate bill. The Wolf administration’s masking order already exempts youth athletes from having to cover their faces during practice or games.