Aldermen pass dress code for council meetings
An ordinance proposed by Alderman David F. Bogdala regarding dress code for members of the Common Council was approved 9 to 7 at Monday’s meeting.
Under the ordinance, all Common Council members are to wear “proper attire.” For male members, that’s a suit or sportcoat and dress pants, with a shirt and tie. For female members, that’s a dress, pantsuit, skirt with a sweater or blouse, or blazer with dress slacks. All members’ clothing must be clean, neat and pressed.
Aldermen Jan Michalski and Rocco LaMacchia spoke against the ordinance.
Michalski said that “not all members go to work in a suit and tie every day. Some of us are ‘blue collar heroes.’”
Alderman Anthony Kennedy also expressed his opposition to the penalty which would be incurred for violating the dress code: being banned from the meeting.
“A person can dress nice and still act in evil ways,” Kennedy said. He added that he’d rather be judged by his actions than by his clothes.
Two motions that Kennedy made, that of putting the Memorial Day to Labor Day exception back in the ordinance, and that of striking the entire penalty section, failed 7 to 9.
Following is the text of the entire ordinance:
1.025 DRESS CODE FOR MEMBERS OF THE COMMON COUNCIL
A. Purpose. The purpose of this Ordinance is to create a dignified and professional environment for the Council meetings which will be reflected in news media coverage thereof.
1. “Proper Attire” shall mean, with respect to male members, a suit or sportcoat and dress pants worn with a shirt and tie, or banded collar shirt, except for the time period of Memorial Day to Labor Day, during which a suit coat may be optional.
B. “Proper Attire” shall mean, with respect to female members, a dress, pantsuit, skirt with a sweater or blouse, or blazer with dress slacks. The term “proper attire” shall also mean that clothing shall be clean, neat and pressed.
C. Requirement. All members of the Common Council shall wear proper attire to all regular meetings of the Common Council and Committee of the Whole meetings.
D. Exception. The Common Council, by motion and for good cause, may suspend this rule for a particular meeting for the entire Common Council or for any member or members thereof.