NY indoor mask mandate stays in place after confusing day

An appeals judge in New York left the state's indoor mask mandate in place on Tuesday while Gov. Kathy Hochul's administration appeals a lower court's decision to overturn it.

Judge Robert Miller granted the state's request for a stay of a Long Island judge's ruling Monday that the governor and health officials lacked authority to require masks. 

Earlier Tuesday, several schools in the state dealt with confusion and controversy over the mask mandate in the wake of the first judge's ruling. 

Manhasset junior Isabella Bonati went home early. Other students who chose not to wear a mask in school were brought to the library to take part in virtual learning. 

"They told me to put a mask on or get out of the building," Bonati said. 

Many parents, including those who filed the lawsuit, are hoping the ruling will stand. 

"I'm just a father who said 'enough is enough' and we have to protect our children at all costs," said Michael Demetriou, an attorney and the plaintiff in the case.

RELATED: New York judge overturns state's mask mandate

Nassau County Executive Bruce Blakeman, who is also for parent choice, had this message to the governor. 

"We're not anti-mask, we're anti-mandate," he said. "We're saying to the governor, 'Stand down.'"

But Hochul said she won't stand down and believes the ruling will be settled. 

"I don't want to keep any requirements for safety a day longer than necessary but I will not do it a day before we can do it safely," she said. 

People who agree with Hochul's mandate say whether they should be required should be a decision made by health experts not a judge. 

The appellate court hearing on the appeal of the judge's ruling has been scheduled for 10 a.m. Friday in Downtown Brooklyn.

With The Associated Press.

Statement from the Governor 

As Governor, my top priority is protecting the people of this state. These measures are critical tools to prevent the spread of COVID-19, make schools and businesses safe, and save lives. I commend the Attorney General for her defense of the health and safety of New Yorkers, and applaud the Appellate Division, Second Department for siding with common sense and granting an interim stay to keep the state's important masking regulations in place. We will not stop fighting to protect New Yorkers, and we are confident we will continue to prevail. —Gov. Kathy Hochul