Savannah Mayor Van Johnson sports a mask and washes his hands during a May visit to Hunter Army Airfield.
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Savannah Mayor Van Johnson sports a mask and washes his hands during a May visit to Hunter Army Airfield.

The mayor of Savannah says he’s ordering people to wear masks inside retail shops, grocery stores and other public places — and those who refuse could face $500 fines.
 
Mayor Van Johnson said Tuesday he doesn't believe the city has any other choice. 

Savannah appears to be the first city in Georgia to make wearing masks mandatory.

The executive director of the Georgia Municipal Association says that some Georgia cities have moved to require face coverings inside government buildings. But Savannah is the first he’s aware of to extend that requirement to public businesses.

RELATED: Savannah To Mandate Masks As COVID-19 Cases Rise