Photo Credit: Poor Richard’s Downtown Facebook Page
This afternoon on July 10th, an addition was made to Monday’s Colorado Springs City Council Work Session Agenda. The Council members will discuss a mandatory face mask ordinance. Less than 24 hours later, Council members plan to hurriedly vote on the ordinance during Tuesday’s regular City Council meeting. Public comment is allowed during Tuesday’s meeting only. Take a look at the ordinance here.
Why is this happening?
Yesterday, Governor Polis announced that people need to, “wear a damn mask.” Also, Mayor Suthers has been heavily promoting mask wearing over the past week. While positive COVID-19 cases are rising in Colorado, deaths and hospitalizations have not risen dramatically. The same pattern applies to El Paso County, where deaths have leveled off.
As we often do at SpringsTaxpayers.com, we received some tips earlier today. We learned that area businesses are uneasy about the possibility of returning to more restrictions due to the increase in positive COVID-19 cases. Also, our tipsters reported that City Council President Richard Skorman made calls to 4 of the 9 City Council Members today to determine if he has the votes to get the ordinance passed at Tuesday’s City Council meeting. It appears he does, as he made the last-minute addition to the Monday and Tuesday council agendas.
Skorman did not contact members who oppose a mandatory face mask ordinance. Mr. Pico, Mr. Williams, and Ms. Gaebler had previously expressed opposition in May when we were the only media to report the City Council discussion about a possible ordinance. Our tipsters said that once Skorman had 5 votes to support the ordinance, the calls ceased.
What can you do to stop this mandate?
We are calling on our readers to oppose this rushed move by Colorado Springs Council. Think about it: the ordinance was added to the Monday agenda today, Friday.
We are also calling on our readers to request that Mr. Skorman recuse himself from Tuesday’s vote. As a business owner, Skorman is not objective in this matter. He has chosen to require masks in his downtown store, which is proper for him to do. But why take that choice away from other businesses? Skorman could simply encourage his fellow business owners to follow suit and require customers to mask up. Using the force of government is not the answer.
We know outrage is high among citizens right now —on both sides of this issue. Individual business owners have the right to make masks mandatory on their property. If a customer doesn’t like it, they can go elsewhere. There is no need for government interference in the matter.
Contact your Council members and Mayor Suthers at these email addresses. You have a right to have your voice heard on the issue.
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
If you are available to attend either of the meetings in person, or to publicly testify at the Tuesday meeting, they will be held Monday July 13th and Tuesday July 14th. Both begin at 10:00 a.m. They are held in the Colorado Springs City Council chambers at 107 N. Nevada, on the 3rd floor.
If you are unable to attend in person, you can watch the live stream link here.
We will keep a close eye on these meetings. Let us know if you have any more tips!