Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Michigan City postpones 'indefinitely' final vote on LGBT anti-discrimination ban

STAFF REPORTS | SAGINAW --  The Saginaw City Council voted 7-2 Monday to postpone consideration of the proposed "Human Rights ordinance" indefinitely after nearly four hours of testimony.
After listening to at times contentious debate, Mayor Pro Tem Amos O'Neal proposed a motion to delay consideration of the measure, saying city leaders should take the time to meet with landlords, business leaders and leaders of the faith-based community reported the Saginaw News.
"This is a very important issue to the community," he said. "I think it would be premature to do it without allowing ample opportunity to bring these parties together."
City Councilwoman Annie Boensch, who led the effort to bring the ordinance to the table, fought vigorously against postponement.
"I cannot vote in support of postponing this any longer," Boensch told the paper adding, "I do not know what we were supposed to be doing the last two weeks."
Boensch said she was concerned that postponing could be an attempt to stop the progress of the proposed ordinance, pointing out that city attorneys were there Monday to answer any questions posed by members of City Council.
"We have the people sitting here that can answer those questions," she said. "But by making the motion you shut down that conversation."
Of the 38 individuals signed up to make public comments Monday night, 29 addressed the proposed ordinance. The majority of those were vocal supporters, though some critics, including a few local pastors, spoke out against the ordinance.