Weld Co. concert raises question: If local law enforcement doesn't enforce health orders, who will?

Posted at 9:39 PM, Jul 27, 2020

GREELEY, Colo. -- Two thousand people gathered in a field for a concert in Weld County over the weekend, defying the state's public health order against mass gatherings in the process, yet no citations have been issued since, which raises the question: If local law enforcement doesn't enforce health orders, who will?

“The position that the sheriff’s office has taken has been the same since the pandemic started. The way we see it is, that an executive order is not the same thing as a law passed by the state legislature,” Weld County Sheriff spokesman Joe Moylan said Sunday night.

Denver7 tried numerous times to contact members of the Weld County government to no avail.

“They look at it and they say, 'Who's going to enforce it? The answer is supposed to be local law enforcement. Well, they are local law enforcement,” Greeley Tribune News Editor Cuyler Meade said.

Meade said that lack of real enforcement from the state is the key factor.

“They've been able to because Denver has not come down with any hammer on them, they've been able to skate and do their own thing,” Meade said.

Denver7 asked the Governor's office what enforcement, if any, will be done to those who don't comply. A spokesperson gave us the following statement:

"We are examining all options on how to increase enforcement and compliance of the public health order, the public health order is in place to protect all Coloradans and our economy. Attending large gatherings doesn’t just put yourself at risk, but also puts your job and your family at risk.”

But Meade adds, “I would imagine they would say, 'Look we are looking at numbers declining here in Weld County so what we're doing is working.' And it's hard to argue with them because numbers are declining in Weld County.”

Which could set up a showdown between Gov. Jared Polis and Weld County Sheriff Steve Reams if the state does come down with the hammer.