Sunday, September 13, 2020

In the News: "Dakotas lead US in virus growth as both reject mask rules"; Franklin Town Clerk resigns

From the Milford Daily News, articles of interest for Franklin:  

"Coronavirus infections in the Dakotas are growing faster than anywhere else in the nation, fueling impassioned debates over masks and personal freedom after months in which the two states avoided the worst of the pandemic.

The argument over masks raged this week in Brookings, South Dakota, as the city council considered requiring face coverings in businesses. The city was forced to move its meeting to a local arena to accommodate intense interest, with many citizens speaking against it, before the mask requirement ultimately passed.

Amid the brute force of the pandemic, health experts warn that the infections must be contained before care systems are overwhelmed. North Dakota and South Dakota lead the country in new cases per capita over the last two weeks, ranking first and second respectively, according to Johns Hopkins University researchers.

South Dakota has also posted some of the country’s highest positivity rates for COVID-19 tests in the last week — over 17 percent — an indication that there are more infections than tests are catching."

Teresa Burr resigns

"A week after it was learned that 3,000 ballots sat uncounted in a vault on primary election night, Town Clerk Teresa Burr announced her intent to resign.

In a letter released Friday night to Town Council Chair Tom Mercer, Burr said she was resigning to “re-establish confidence with the voters of this community in their elections.”

“After the events of the past three months, this election season has been the most challenging election cycle of my career,” Burr wrote. “I fully support our Town Clerk office staff and election workers to take my place and lead this community through future elections.”

Franklin was one of three communities, along with Newton and Wellesley, to have uncounted ballots as of the morning of Sept. 2, the day after the primary. About 750 ballots that were dropped into Newton’s secure ballot drop boxes in the last three hours of the election went uncounted, while Wellesley was unable to get to about 100 ballots, between late drop box submissions and absentee ballots."

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