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Answers to cell phone ordinance questions

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Amarillo, Texas - There continue to be misconceptions about the recently enacted cell phone ordinance approved by city commissioners. We spoke with Amarillo's Mayor Harpole to clear some of these up.

Since the ordinance was approved in September many Amarillo residents have been questioning parts of it. And now that it has taken effect, it has become a main topic of discussion.

One of the biggest concerns we've seen on NewsChannel 10's Facebook page, is that the city commissioners and other city employees are exempted from following the ordinance.

Mayor Harpole says that simply is untrue.

Just like anyone else under the ordinance, they are only allowed to not use a hands-free device in an emergency situation.

"Let me give you a for instance... Say there's a tornado that's heading towards town, and the city manager gets a call to be at a certain place for the emergency response. Let's say his Bluetooth was at home. He can use his phone for whatever he needs to to respond to that," Mayor Harpole says.

The mayor went on to tell us city employees are being instructed who can and cannot use a cell phone while driving. Government employees must follow the ordinance like all other residents.

But a petition to put the ordinance to a vote is still circulating and gaining signatures.

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