Last night the City Council convened to vote on the extension of Mayor Jorge O. Elorza’s Executive Order. The matter did not pass as it required a mega-majority vote (11 out of 14 affirmative votes) which it did not receive.
Pursuant to section 302-i of the City Home Rule Charter Mayor Elorza would need three-fourths of the Council to vote in the affirmative or 11 out of the current 14 voting members. Last night the vote was 7 ayes, 5 nays, 1 abstention, and 1 Councilor absent.
“The City Council has a sworn oath to uphold the City’s Home Rule Charter,” stated City Council Majority Whip John J. Igliozzi Esq. (Ward 7). “As a Council, we are the checks and balances of the Executive Branch and the Mayor’s order did not meet the requirements put forth by our founding mothers and fathers to extend, and our duty is to the will of the many not the will of one.”
What this means for the residents of Providence, is that all regulations put forth by Governor Gina Raimondo should be followed in its totality. With that, all parks and golf courses within the City limits will be open under the strict guidelines set forth by the Governor. No groups of five or more individuals shall gather together in the first phase of her plan to reopen the economy, cloth face masks must be worn at all times, and social distancing guidelines must be followed.
Majority Leader Jo-Ann Ryan (Ward 5) stated, “The Mayor’s Executive Order did not meet the required vote to pass the City Council. It is our obligation to follow the Home Rule Charter to the letter, and that is what we did. These are difficult times, but we must follow the law.”
“Last night’s vote only proves that the Mayor is not following the guidelines set forth by Governor Raimondo,” stated Councilman James Taylor (Ward 8). “I have consistently voted against the Mayor’s Executives Orders as each one of them has not been consistent with the Governor’s.”