Greenfield Mayor vetoes Safe City Ordinance

Franklin County

GREENFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – There’s some confusion surrounding the Safe City Ordinance recently passed by Greenfield’s City Council, and how it compares to the mayor’s executive order from 2017.

Greenfield City Councilors have been working on a proposal to designate Greenfield a “safe city” for more than two years.

“I think it’s a great idea. I think everybody’s welcome. I think it’s welcoming already,” said Alison Maslanka of Erving.

But on September 3, Greenfield Mayor Bill Martin vetoed the ordinance approved by the City Council. He said there seems to be disagreement between the safe city ordinance and the executive order he issued back in 2017.

“What’s the difference between the ordinance and the executive order? I could see no difference, We should not accept Section 287G and that means that you can opt in or opt out of working with ICE and I said we would not accept that,” Martin said.

The major difference is the Safe City Ordinance doesn’t allow police to ask residents’ immigration status even when relevant to a potential crime, where the executive order does.

Some people said the ordinance would align them with other “safe cities.”

“I think unifying like that is important. I think if we said, ‘Greenfield’s a safe city,’ that would give more of a binding brand to stand stronger,” said Alex Roche of Pittsfield.

Mayor Martin hopes the City Council accepts his veto, but voters will have the final say in November.

The Safe City Ordinance will be a referendum question on the November 5 ballot.

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