* Taylor: “We want you to wear a mask and there will be penalties (for non compliance).”
* Taylor: “As far as not having enough police, I can’t take that very seriously.”
The Newport City Council voted 7-0 Wednesday night to table for one week Councilor Susan Taylor’s mandate that everyone wear face masks 24/7 in downtown Newport. The ordinance had no means of enforcement and no means to actually implement it.
Councilor Taylor’s mask mandate only included Broadway, America’s Cup and Thames Street, it did not include Spring Street, Bellevue Avenue, Ocean Drive, Memorial Boulevard, Long Wharf…
Councilor McLaughlin suggested passing out postcards to people without masks before stepping in as the voice of reason and asking Councilor Taylor to table to the motion till the next meeting of the city council.
City Manager Joe Nicholson advised the council that the city had no business enforcing public health edicts and that in fact those were up to the State of Rhode Island to enforce. “There is no perfect enforcement mechanism here, but it’s the message.”
Councilor Kate Leonard said, “We don’t have the manpower, We don’t have any type of enforcement. I’d like to see a plan for how they would actually do it,” Leondar continued, “I think this is more feel good than do good.”
Councilor Taylor reluctantly pulled her ordinance for one week and the council will take it up at their next meeting on June 3rd.