Kansas City Council Committee Gets Public Comment On Masks

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A special session of a Kansas City Council committee collects public testimony on the city’s mask tenure on Wednesday. This is what you need to know.

What’s on the agenda

The only item on the evening’s agenda is Order 210694, which would extend Kansas City’s mask term until September 23.

The Kansas City mandate, which went into effect on August 2, applies to people over the age of 5, regardless of their immunization status, with a few exceptions. Currently, it is due to expire on August 28, but board approval is due to be extended.

Ahead of the order for masks, 10 Kansas City health agencies – driven by increased COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations, and low vaccination rates – issued a joint public health advisory recommending that unvaccinated people wear masks.

St. Louis also previously issued a mask warrant that met with a lawsuit against Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt. This mandate was subsequently revoked by St. Louis County Council. Schmitt also sued the Kansas City order, alleging the warrant was unconstitutional.

Days after the Kansas City mask warrant went into effect, anti-mask protesters gathered outside City Hall to protest. Anti-mask protesters also gathered in downtown Kansas City, Kansas to protest the mask mandate implemented by the unified government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kansas amid the increase cases of COVID-19.

Where and when

The special meeting of the Transportation, Infrastructure and Operations Committee will be held Wednesday at 6 p.m. at the Kansas City Regional Police Academy in 6885 Northeast Pleasant Valley Road.

How to participate

Members of the public can participate in person or send a written testimony to the Clerk’s Office at [email protected] Written comments will be added to the public record. In-person testimony will be limited to two minutes each.

The meeting will last two hours. It will be broadcast live on website on kcmo.gov and on the city website Youtube channel, Kansas City, Mo. City Communications. Kansas citizens can also watch Channel 2 on their cable system.

And after

After public testimony, the committee will vote on what to do with it. Public testimony helps committee members decide whether or not to pass the order.

If the committee decides to recommend that the ordinance be adopted, it will travel to full council on Thursday at 3 p.m. Then the council could vote to approve the ordinance.

The plenary session of the council does not accept comments from the public.

Due to a new Missouri law that requires public health restrictions to be reviewed by the board every 30 days, the same process would occur in September if the board decides it should be extended.

A majority vote of council members could vote to repeal the by-law, although Mayor Quinton Lucas has said the majority of council members support the by-law.

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Cortlynn Stark covers Town Hall with a focus on fairness for The Kansas City Star. She joined The Star in January 2020 as a breaking reporter. Cortlynn studied journalism and Spanish at Missouri State University.


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