With coronavirus crescendoing and epidemiologists warning that big Thanksgiving dinners will lead to small Christmas funerals, authorities say they have been doing everything possible to corral the pandemic. In Springfield, the city boasts about taking the toughest measures in the state, authorizing police to write $50 citations to maskless people found inside any building open to the public. Good luck finding out how many folks have gotten tickets. When we asked police chief Kenny Winslow on Nov. 16, an assistant chief called. One ticket has been issued, he said. Can we get a copy of the citation? File a Freedom of Information Act request. The next day, we asked Mayor Langfelder: How many people have gotten tickets, and is a FOIA request necessary? Two, the mayor answered, and no. Nearly a week later, a spreadsheet arrived showing that 11 booze parlors and eight restaurants have been ticketed since Aug. 8 for violating ordinances on social distancing, indoor dining and masks. No tickets were written between Aug. 8 and Oct. 4. Sixteen of the 19 cases haven't been resolved. How many $50 tickets have been written? That's still a mystery. Just an idea: Put a daily coronavirus box score on the city website that includes the number of new infections, the number of deaths and the number of people hospitalized alongside numbers of citations. How hard could that be?

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