On September 10, the majority on the Nashua Aldermanic Personnel/Administrative Affairs Committee voted in favor of an updated mask ordinance that would force Nashua businesses to be the mask police, with a penalty of up to $1,000 for non-compliance.
The aldermen on the committee were all in agreement except for lone dissenter, Alderman Ben Clemons.
The aldermen in favor of the ordinance, June Caron (Ward 7), Tom Lopez (Ward 4), Skip Cleaver (Ward 8), and Shoshanna Kelly (At Large), say we need the updated ordinance because they believe that the current mask ordinance is protecting Nashua residents and an even stricter mask ordinance would offer even more protection. They cited no studies or statistics, only anecdotes, and their personal feelings. They expressed no concern for the loss of customers to small businesses that are already suffering under the COVID-19 shutdowns and restrictions.
The ordinance also requires that anyone entering a Nashua business without a mask is required to produce documentation proving that they have a medical reason for not requiring a mask. The aldermen in support of the ordinance had no sympathy for any privacy concerns or any concerns that this might violate HIPAA.
Kudos to Ben Clemons (At Large) for speaking out against the ordinance at length and even taking some heat from City Attorney Steve Bolton during the meeting, as well as voting against passage of the ordinance.
There will be a final vote taken on the updated mask ordinance at the next meeting of the full Nashua Board of Alderman on Tuesday, September 22 at 7:30 pm on Zoom. Call in to the meeting to speak during the public comment period at the beginning of the meeting, which is item “9(a)” in the meeting agenda.
The meeting agenda includes fascinating emails from Nashua resident Andy Cooper on pages 14-15 and 16-33 concerning the science and statistics of COVID-19 spread and wearing masks and the ignorance and hypocrisy of the Mayor and members of the Board of Aldermen.
A mask ordinance protest is being held on Nashua City Hall Plaza every Tuesday and Thursday from 4 to 6 pm through November 3, Election Day.
Speaking of Election Day, Skip Cleaver is running for re-election as a state rep in Ward 8.