Mayor Hancock

President Obama’s controversial ozone restrictions have divided black leaders in major cities across the nation, but no word on where Denver Mayor Hancock stands on the issue.

According to a report in Politico, some black leaders are concerned the clampdown would directly impact poor communities already struggling to hold onto jobs that would be affected by the new government regulations.

One lawmaker cited, Democratic Missouri state Sen. Jamilah Nasheed, wrote to a senior Obama advisor in July:

“I know I speak for the vast majority of my 5th District constituents here in St. Louis when I say I appreciate the job President Obama has done, especially the moral leadership he showed in the face of racial tragedies in Ferguson and other communities over the past year.”

But lowering the ozone threshold too far would make things worse for a city like St. Louis that is “still feeling the pain of the 2007-2009 recession,” Nasheed said, and would hurt employment and “create new hardships for already struggling low-income urban families.”

Even Gov. Hickenlooper has questioned whether lowering the standards is the right move and complained that clear evidence was lacking to pinpoint it as a significant health hazard.

The new regulations go into effect on Oct. 1, so the clock is ticking on Hancock to make his position known.