Doug Peterson

Nebraska Attorney General

Attorney General Response

The role of the Attorney General is to evaluate the law, not create or direct public health policy. Under Nebraska law, the Douglas County Health Department may only take measures “to arrest the progress of” infectious disease “with the approval of the Department of Health and Human Services.” Neb. Rev. Stat. § 71-1631(10). Nebraska law contains an exception for the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department. Lancaster County mask directive was issued pursuant to that provision. Neb. Rev. Stat. § 71-1630(4). The Attorney General’s Office discussed this legal issue with the Omaha City Attorney but did not direct whether or not to enact a mask ordinance.