Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp Sues Atlanta Mayor Over Mask Mandate

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp adjusts his mask prior to a bill signing at Wellstar Kennestone Hospital where the hospital opened a new Emergency Room space, Thursday, July 16, 2020, in Marietta, Ga.

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp adjusts his mask prior to a bill signing at Wellstar Kennestone Hospital where the hospital opened a new Emergency Room space, Thursday, July 16, 2020, in Marietta, Ga. AP Photo

 

Connecting state and local government leaders

STATE AND LOCAL NEWS ROUNDUP | Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt becomes first governor to test positive … People pack into Utah meeting to complain about school mask requirements … Supreme Court will allow Florida to bar ex-felons from voting if fines remain unpaid.

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp and the state filed a lawsuit Thursday against Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and the city council, trying to block the city’s mask mandate and other coronavirus restrictions. On Wednesday, the governor issued an executive order banning local governments from issuing mask mandates aimed at limiting the spread of the coronavirus. Mayors then reacted with a mixture of frustration and defiance, with Bottoms saying she would continue to require masks in city-owned buildings like the airport. Georgia, the first state to reopen after initiating restrictions on businesses this spring, has seen climbing case counts. On July 10, Bottoms issued an order pushing Atlanta back to “Phase One,” which encouraged people to remain at home and closed restaurants to in-person service. Kemp said his lawsuit is “on behalf of the Atlanta business owners and their hardworking employees who are struggling to survive during these difficult times. These men and women are doing their very best to put food on the table for their families while local elected officials shutter businesses and undermine economic growth.” Bottoms responded in a tweet, noting that she and her family have tested positive for Covid-19 and 3,104 people in the state have died. “A better use of taxpayer money would be to expand testing and contact tracing,” she said. Bottoms isn’t the only local leader at odds with a governor. For example, in Texas, Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo has said she wants to issue a stay-at-home order for the Houston area, but Gov. Greg Abbott hasn’t given her the authority to do so. A White House document obtained by the Center for Public Integrity shows Georgia, Florida, Texas and 13 other states in the coronavirus “red zone” for new cases, a category the report says should result in policies like indoor mask requirements and closure of bars and gyms. [WSB-TV; Atlanta Journal Constitution; Associated Press; Savannah Morning News; Houston Chronicle]

GOVERNOR WITH CORONAVIRUS | Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt became the first governor to test positive for the coronavirus on Wednesday. Stitt said he did not know how he became infected and feels fine. On Wednesday, the state reported 1,075 new coronavirus cases, its highest number for a single day since the start of the pandemic. [New York Times]

PROVO SCHOOLS | Residents of Provo, Utah packed into a county hearing on Wednesday to complain about a mandate from Gov. Gary Herbert requiring students at public schools this fall to wear masks. Commissioner Tanner Ainge left the meeting early after observing that it did not comply with social distancing guidelines. Members of the public complained that masks cut off oxygen and stated that Covid-19 is just like the flu. “Covid is a hoax. It’s a lie. It’s a political stunt,” said one woman. [Salt Lake Tribune]

FLORIDA VOTING | The Supreme Court will allow Florida to prohibit people with felony convictions who haven’t paid the fines and fees they owe from voting in the November election. The decision was made in an unsigned order on Thursday and did not include any reasoning. Three justices signed onto a dissent by Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who wrote, it “prevents thousands of otherwise eligible voters from participating in Florida's primary election simply because they are poor.” [CNN; Washington Post

POLICE ACCOUNTABILITY | New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio signed into law the “NYPD Accountability Package,” a series of policy changes that, among other things, bans the use of chokeholds, protects citizens’ rights to record police, and requires on-duty officers to have their shield number and rank designations visible at all times. "I'm confident we can make these reforms work and continue strengthening the bond between police officers and our communities,” he said. [ABC 7]

Laura Maggi is the managing editor at Route Fifty and Emma Coleman is the assistant editor.

NEXT STORY: With Kids Spending More Waking Hours On Screens Than Ever, Here’s What Parents Need to Worry About

X
This website uses cookies to enhance user experience and to analyze performance and traffic on our website. We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners. Learn More / Do Not Sell My Personal Information
Accept Cookies
X
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Do Not Sell My Personal Information

When you visit our website, we store cookies on your browser to collect information. The information collected might relate to you, your preferences or your device, and is mostly used to make the site work as you expect it to and to provide a more personalized web experience. However, you can choose not to allow certain types of cookies, which may impact your experience of the site and the services we are able to offer. Click on the different category headings to find out more and change our default settings according to your preference. You cannot opt-out of our First Party Strictly Necessary Cookies as they are deployed in order to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting the cookie banner and remembering your settings, to log into your account, to redirect you when you log out, etc.). For more information about the First and Third Party Cookies used please follow this link.

Allow All Cookies

Manage Consent Preferences

Strictly Necessary Cookies - Always Active

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data, Targeting & Social Media Cookies

Under the California Consumer Privacy Act, you have the right to opt-out of the sale of your personal information to third parties. These cookies collect information for analytics and to personalize your experience with targeted ads. You may exercise your right to opt out of the sale of personal information by using this toggle switch. If you opt out we will not be able to offer you personalised ads and will not hand over your personal information to any third parties. Additionally, you may contact our legal department for further clarification about your rights as a California consumer by using this Exercise My Rights link

If you have enabled privacy controls on your browser (such as a plugin), we have to take that as a valid request to opt-out. Therefore we would not be able to track your activity through the web. This may affect our ability to personalize ads according to your preferences.

Targeting cookies may be set through our site by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant adverts on other sites. They do not store directly personal information, but are based on uniquely identifying your browser and internet device. If you do not allow these cookies, you will experience less targeted advertising.

Social media cookies are set by a range of social media services that we have added to the site to enable you to share our content with your friends and networks. They are capable of tracking your browser across other sites and building up a profile of your interests. This may impact the content and messages you see on other websites you visit. If you do not allow these cookies you may not be able to use or see these sharing tools.

If you want to opt out of all of our lead reports and lists, please submit a privacy request at our Do Not Sell page.

Save Settings
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Cookie List

A cookie is a small piece of data (text file) that a website – when visited by a user – asks your browser to store on your device in order to remember information about you, such as your language preference or login information. Those cookies are set by us and called first-party cookies. We also use third-party cookies – which are cookies from a domain different than the domain of the website you are visiting – for our advertising and marketing efforts. More specifically, we use cookies and other tracking technologies for the following purposes:

Strictly Necessary Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Functional Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Performance Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Social Media Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Targeting Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.