Spicer City Council votes to urge Gov. Walz to allow businesses to reopen
SPICER — The Spicer City Council passed a resolution urging Gov. Tim Walz to allow businesses to reopen in Minnesota.
The resolution, passed in a 3-2 vote during a special council meeting Monday evening, not only urges Walz to allow businesses to open but states that businesses can reopen safely and must provide a plan that follows Centers for Disease Control guidelines if they do plan to reopen.
Council members Robin deCathelineau and Shelly Munyon were the dissenting votes. Mayor Denny Baker and council members Troy Block and Jesse Gislason voted yes.
The City Council previously met with business groups via Zoom around 10 a.m. Monday to discuss their concerns.
According to Baker, the businesses they spoke to did not want to run afoul of the law.
“To my knowledge, all of them were wanting to open up limited with safety precautions,” Baker said. “In other words, not just throw the door open.”
The stay-at-home order, originally enacted March 27, directs Minnesotans to limit movements outside of their homes beyond essential needs during the pandemic. Many activities and jobs are deemed "essential" and exempt, such as health care, law enforcement, child care, going to the grocery store and running.
The order was then extended and modified April 30, allowing workers in certain non-critical sectors also to return to the workplace once a plan has been established by the business to meet guidelines to protect public health. This includes industry and manufacturing, office-based businesses and some retail service businesses that can offer limited interaction.
The order is set to expire May 18.
Council members all spoke on the difficulties local businesses are facing during the meeting, but deCathelineau said they have received some particularly uncouth comments from the public regarding the pandemic.
Baker also clarified a quote he gave to the Lakes Area Review that read: “We could die either way.”
Baker said he was quoted correctly but said he meant that we could die from the virus or die economically.
The resolution specifically states the council does not have the power to overturn the law and Baker made sure to point that out during the meeting, but also said the stay-at-home order should not be extended.
“If Governor Walz were to delay the opening, we’re in trouble,” Baker said.