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News covering policy and issues related to city and county governments in the Ozarks.

Springfield Council Confirms Oct. 13 Vote on Non-Discrimination Ordinance

Scott Harvey

A vote on the City of Springfield’s non-discrimination ordinance will take place two weeks sooner than had been previously announced.

During public testimony on the bill this week, Mayor Bob Stephens said a vote by the council would take place Oct. 27. The city now says that vote will take place at its Oct. 13 meeting.

Two bills will be up for consideration at the meeting. The stronger of the two would expand sexual orientation and gender identity in the areas of housing, employment and public accommodations. The substitute bill would offer protections in housing only. It also calls for creating another task force directing the Mayor's Commission on Human Rights and Community Relations to conduct a study on discrimination. Both bills include a religious exemption for housing.

City Council on Monday listened to roughly three hours of testimony on the bills. 24 spoke in favor, while 21 were opposed.

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