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Mask ordinance fails at Cape Coral council meeting

The motion to approve a face mask ordinance in the City of Cape Coral failed during the Monday Cape Coral City Council meeting.

Council decided to strongly recommend the use of masks out in public and to stick to education of mask use and public safety during the coronavirus pandemic.

Public commenters showed up again in large number to be heard by the mayor and council. The messages from the public varied between approval and disdain for the ordinance that eventually failed.

At city hall, police say two women and a man attempted to enter through a restricted stairway at the facility. They were all arrested and now face charges.

A memo from the city manager, chief of police, fire chief and public works director asked for no mask mandate and wanted a strong recommendation to wear masks. The public leaders said a mask mandate would have potentially put police officers and those in code compliance in “precarious situations.”

MORE: 3 arrested for disrupting Cape Coral meeting, resisting police


ORIGINAL STORY BELOW:

A proposed ordinance in Cape Coral would order people in the city to wear a face mask in all businesses, restaurants, shops, hotels and churches, as well as using ride-share services such as Uber and Lyft.

Cape Coral City Council continued to listen to public commenters Monday ahead of making any decisions on a proposed mask mandate in the city. This comes after the city held a portion of its public hearing on the ordinance Thursday.

Since the last council meeting, Southwest Florida reported another 2,200 new coronavirus cases. Of those, 62% of the cases were in Lee County.

Anyone over the age of six would be required to wear a mask in the designated spaces, per the ordinance proposal.

And businesses would have to put signs up to let people know they must wear masks.

“I see no harm in everybody wearing a mask,” said John Deck in Cape Coral. “I wear it out of respect for you, and hopefully you wear it out of respect for me.”

“Everybody can protest, rob, steal, kill, but they’re not mandated to wear a mask, but we are,” said Tom Crum in Cape Coral.

The ordinance proposal allows people not to wear masks during When you exercise, as long as individuals are 6 feet apart from one other.

Fines for people disobeying the ordinance if approved by city council would range from $50 to $250.

Reporter:Anika Henanger
Taylor Petras
Writer:Jack Lowenstein
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