Universal masking has returned to buildings owned by the state of New York in counties with substantial or high cases of COVID-19, a spokeswoman for the Office of General Services confirmed Tuesday.

At the state Capitol in Albany, signs requiring masking regardless of vaccination status returned to the hallways, and state officials have put similar signs up in other areas of the state with qualifying COVID-19 case rates.

"OGS placed the signs that masks are now required in all state-owned buildings, regardless of vaccination status, if your county has a high transmission rates per GOER's updated policy," said OGS spokeswoman Michelle Rosales.

Substantial transmission as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is 60-100 cases per 100,000, or a positivity rate of between 8% and 10%. A high transmission rate is 100 or more cases per 100,000 people, or a positive rate of 10% or higher.

The expanded mask rules for state-owned buildings also comes as school buildings in New York have put universal masking rules in place as students and teachers return to the classroom this month.