SEVIERVILLE — Sevier County is one of two East Tennessee counties still under a mask mandate, but county officials appear set to lift that requirement April 15.

Back in February, Gov. Bill Lee actually gave county governments the authority to extend their mandates as long as April 28.

Sevier County Mayor Larry Waters announced at that time he was extending the county’s mandate through April 15, and said he didn’t plan to extend it after that unless the county’s COVID-19 numbers began to climb again.

Several other East Tennessee counties set earlier dates to lift or renew their mandates, and after Thursday only Sevier and Knox remain under the orders.

Sevier County’s active cases have been dropping over the past few weeks. The Tennessee Department of Health didn’t release numbers for Thursday until late in the evening, and was not releasing figures for Friday because state offices were closed for Good Friday.

Thursday’s numbers showed the active cases were continuing to drop, falling by 9 to 230.

There were no new hospitalizations reported among Sevier County residents, and the state actually reduced the total number of deaths reported from the pandemic to 172.

Tennessee Department of Health officials have indicated that typically means they determined a person included in those statistics was actually a resident of another county.

There were 17 positive results from 232 newly reported tests, for a positivity rate of 7.3%.

Contact Jeff at or Twitter at @jeffmtnpress

Contact Jeff at or Twitter at @jeffmtnpress