Photo Credit: Moose, the Dog
During the April 27th Colorado Springs City Council Work Session, several members of the 9- member Council discussed the idea for a new ordinance that would require face masks to be worn in public. City Council President Richard Skorman said that as a business owner, he was worried about partial re-openings in the business community. Skorman asked if the other council members want to be more proactive about this policy. Skorman credited Councilman Don Knight as the council member behind the face mask ordinance idea, although Knight didn’t speak up during the meeting.
Councilman David Geislinger expressed support.
Councilman Bill Murray stated it’s in the “best interest” of the community for everyone to wear a mask in public.
Toward the end of the conversation, Skorman said he would take the conversation offline and call council members to see how everybody felt individually. Would more council members have spoken up if Skorman had not stopped the conversation? Possibly. Constituents deserve a public commentary —not a discussion behind closed doors.
Just as the conversation about mandatory masks was about to end, one council member offered his lone dissent. Councilman Andy Pico disagreed with the idea of criminal enforcement behind mandatory masks. We appreciate all council members who spoke up during the public session.
Since we shared the 5-minute meeting video clip, many readers have contacted their Council members. These public servants have been replying to citizen emails, and some have forwarded those replies to us. While Pico was the lone dissenter during public discussions, it turns out he is not alone. Councilwoman Jill Gaebler responded to one citizen that she was opposed to an ordinance telling you to mask up, and prefers for businesses to make that call. Our thanks go out to Councilors Pico and Gaebler!
Does Colorado Springs really need to follow Denver’s lead and ticket people for not wearing face masks? Definitely not! Wear a mask or don’t wear a mask. It should be up to the individual. Do your research and make the decision that is the best for you.
If a business wants to post signage that masks are mandatory in a store, that’s up to the business owners. And it’s your decision about whether or not to shop there. No government involvement or fines are necessary, thank you very much.
We’d love to see our readers post this topic on their Nextdoor sites and their social media pages. Please share this blog and spread the word. Also, we encourage you to contact council members and Mayor Suthers to offer your thoughts about a potential ordinance. As always, we encourage you to be polite.
This is an ongoing discussion, and will likely be a topic at the upcoming Monday, May 11th Council Work Session. According to the work session agenda, the El Paso County Health Department is going to visit City Council Chambers on Monday to provide an update on COVID-19. Discussion about a mask ordinance will likely follow.
Wayne Williams Wayne.firstname.lastname@example.org
Tom Strand Tom.email@example.com
Bill Murray Bill.firstname.lastname@example.org
Andres Pico Andy.Pico@Coloradosprings.gov
Jill Gaebler Jill.Gaebler@coloradosprings.gov
Yolanda Avila Yolanda.Avila@coloradosprings.gov
Richard Skorman Richard.Skorman@coloradosprings.gov
David Geislinger David.Geislinger@Coloradosprings.gov
Don Knight Don.Knight@Coloradosprings.gov
Mayor John Suthers Jsuthers@springsgov.com
We’ll keep following this potential ordinance. We’ll keep you posted about what happens. Stay safe, Colorado Springs.