Non-masked Ohio Township official dismissed from official hearing

Amherst Township, Ohio

Entrance doors to Amherst Township Hall (Ohio). State government mask directive signs posted on the doors. August 14, 2020

Not wearing a mask, Kirsten Hill entered the Amherst Township Hall just before a hearing was to take place on August 19, 2020, to consider an application for a variance to the township property resolution. A few minutes later Board of Zoning Appeals (BZA) Chairman, Bill Latrany, recused board Vice Chairman, Kirsten Hill, from participating in the hearing because she was not wearing a mask.

Hill said she was healthy and that the mask-wearing requirement was unconstitutional. She also stated to Lorain County Assistant Prosecutor Mangan, Chairman Latrany and those assembled for the hearing they “could assume I have a medical condition”. With advising from Mangan, Latrany asked Hill to recuse herself from participation in the hearing. Hill refused to recuse herself. Latrany then recused Hill.

At that moment, Daniel Samms, a bystander in the audience stood up and called out in disbelief over what he witnessed, a citizen being dismissed from her appointed duties for not wearing a mask over her face in the township hall.

With township trustees, BZA Board members, variance applicant and neighboring property owners watching in silence, Hill took her papers and township zoning resolution binder and peacefully exited the building.

Was justice served?

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