Tie breaking votes defeat COVID-19 ordinances in Carthage

Gathering sizes and face masks were voted on
Possible Covid 19 Ordinances In Carthage

UPDATE: Carthage residents weigh in on City Council’s special meeting.

Carthage resident Elijah Hicklin was disappointed about the vote against mandatory masks.

“It’s a little worrying that a decision of public safety was split directly down the middle its concerning.”

He believes it would be helpful in preventing the spread of COVID-19.

“It’s something that a lot of places have already done places like France have implanted a permanent mask while you’re in public and its all about the concern of lowering the curve and preventing the spread of this global pandemic..”

But for Mykal Mcguirk, he thinks masks should be an option but that there still should be some restrictions to help with COVID-19.

“It should still be limited down to the numbers like several places around here they have had it spaced out so that is a good thing but they still want people to wear masks at the same time, I don’t think it should be forced.”

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CARTHAGE, Mo. – The Carthage Mayor breaks two tie votes, defeating an ordinance that would have moved the city back to Phase One of Missouri’s reopening plan, and one that would mandate face masks in public.

City Council members voted on three ordinances this afternoon, July 1, related to restricting the spread of COVID-19.

“Number 1 we will be discussing closing down the parks for activities that have greater than ten people…number 2, we will be discussing rolling back just the City of Carthage to phase one of Governor Parsons show me plan and the third item on the agenda would be an ordinance to require face masks for the general population in our city” Council Member Ed Barlow told KOAM on Tuesday.

This afternoon, Council voted against closing parks to any activity greater than 10 people in a 6-4 vote.

They then discussed moving restrictions back to Missouri’s Phase 1, which would mean going back to limiting the number of people allowed inside a store or business, and continuing the 6-feet apart rule. Council had a tie vote on the second reading of the ordinance. Mayor Dan Rife then voted no to break the tie, defeating the ordinance.

Council also tied in the second reading of the face mask ordinance. It would require people ages six and up to wear face masks in public, indoor spaces when social distancing can’t be achieved. Mayor Rife also broke the tie, voting no.

“Now there’s I, and my vote would be nay” said Mayor Dan Rife.

The Council did vote unanimously to form a task force to address COVID-19-related issues and research antibody testing.

(This is a developing story. It will be updated as information is released)

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