A New Mexico mayor reportedly fired his city manager for refusing to reopen a golf course amid the state’s stay-at-home order currently in effect to limit the impact of the coronavirus, according to a report Tuesday.
Hicks announced Monday he would challenge Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s statewide stay-at-home order, encouraging non-essential businesses in Grant, including a gun shop and its city-operated golf course, to reopen.
“Come play golf,” Hicks told residents, according to KOB 4. “What the governor is doing is wrong. That’s why we’re standing up against it.”
New Mexico State Police responded to at least eight businesses who reopened their doors, but officers only issued one citation, as well as one cease-and-desist order to the city-operated golf course.
Jaramillo was dismissed by the mayor for not ordering city employees at the golf course to reopen.
“This is about the Constitution to this country. Period,” Hicks told KOB 4 Monday in an interview outdoors. “It’s about our livelihoods. It’s about our liberties. It’s about our rights. And we will not compromise them no more to a tyrant in Santa Fe.”
“Why do you want to take the chance to spread it?” a woman passing on the street shouted, confronting the mayor. After spouting profanity and calling the woman “ridiculous,” the mayor then said the city’s revenue is down by 30 percent, meaning he might need to lay off staff.
The New Mexico Office of the Attorney General also sent a cease and desist letter to Hicks on Tuesday, ordering him to follow the governor’s orders. The mayor argued it’s unfair for the state government to allow hardware store chains and large supermarkets to remain open while smaller salons and mom-and-pop shops must shut their doors.