The Sioux Falls City Council will take up a proposed stay-at-home order Wednesday night.
The move comes after Governor Kristi Noem rejected Sioux Falls Mayor Paul TenHaken’s request for a stay-at-home order for Minnehaha and Lincoln Counties.
The mayor of Sioux Falls calls the ordinance a “heavier-handed approach” to slowing the spread of COVID-19 in Sioux Falls.
“It’s a law. We’re putting this into law,” Sioux Falls Mayor Paul TenHaken said.
The ordinance calls for people in Sioux Falls to stay home except to work in a critical infrastructure sector job or to conduct essential activities.
Some essential activities include running errands, taking in some outdoor activity, and going through a drive-thru or picking up takeout.
“Do we intend to have our police officers and our law enforcement writing tickets everywhere? No. This is an education effort. Texting and driving is illegal as well. Do people still do it? Yes. Do we give people a lot of grace? Yes. This is a law we’re putting on the books to ensure an enhanced level of compliance amongst our citizens,” Mayor TenHaken said.
If approved, the order would go into effect on April 24th through May 8th for now.
“I am being called everything from Hitler to Mayor Mussolini to everything in between. You need to know that it pains me to have to bring things like this forward. I don’t want to have to do that, but we continue to try to balance this very fluid, very delicate, delicate situation,” Mayor TenHaken said.
Wednesday is the first reading of this ordinance.
If it passes, it will move to a second reading next week.