Councilors voted 4-1 at the end of a four-hour meeting Tuesday night to reject the petition
Members of the Clark County Council voted Tuesday night to reject a mini initiative petition to stop some mandates in Clark County.
Voting on a motion to reject the petition, the councilors voted 4-1 in favor of rejecting the petition. Councilors Temple Lentz, Julie Olson, Karen Bowerman and Gary Medvigy voted in favor of the motion to reject the petition. Chair Eileen Quiring O’Brien voted against the motion.
The efforts of dozens of volunteers and support of 11,505 Clark County citizens over the past few months culminated Tuesday evening when members of the County Council held a public hearing in a virtual format to address the mini initiative petition. Councilors heard two hours of testimony from Clark County citizens, including those who spoke in favor of and against the petition.
The councilors also listened to counsel from a representative of the Clark County Prosecuting Attorney’s office about legal interpretations of potential impacts for the county and its citizens if the petition was approved. Prior to the meeting, the councilors also received a communication from the office of Gov. Jay Inslee about the petition.
Area resident Rob Anderson began the effort last fall. He and many other citizens believed the forced vaccination mandates, as well as other mandates that aren’t equally applied, ultimately discriminate and should be challenged. Anderson addressed the members of the County Council at the beginning of the public comments during Tuesday’s meeting.
The summary statement on the petition reads as follows:
AN ORDINANCE prohibiting all mandates within Clark County that discriminate against citizens regarding their health status and or that violates existing rights to health information privacy.
Volunteers quickly picked up mini initiative petitions, placing them at area businesses and collecting signatures from friends and neighbors. Hundreds of supporters attended an anti-mandate rally on Oct. 30 in Vancouver.
On Nov. 30, Anderson and Vancouver attorney Angus Lee presented 11,505 signed petitions to Cathie Garber, Clark County Elections supervisor. The proponents needed 8,311 signatures for the mini initiative to be valid. After a 30-day window to validate the signatures, the County Council then had 60 days to hold a public meeting, after which the councilors had a 30-day time limit to make a decision.
Please check back with Clark County Today for extensive coverage of Tuesday’s meeting.