Ohio Republicans issue bill seeking to limit health orders

Local News

COLUMBUS, OH (WCMH)- A new bill would change how the Governor of Ohio and the Ohio Director of Health issues health orders.

Governor Mike DeWine and the republican legislature have not seen eye to eye several times during this pandemic and now lawmakers have introduced another bill that would implement what they call checks and balances on the executive branch.

“There’s oversight in any industry and to think that any politician doesn’t want oversight then you start to question the values of why,” Rep. Jon Cross, (R) Kenton.

Senate Bill 22 was introduced this week would do several things including creating a committee of lawmakers with the power to rescind some orders and rules by Governor DeWine and the Ohio Health Department. The bill would also limit a public health emergency to 30 days unless extended by the general assembly.

“The bill does not restrict the Governor or the Director of Health from making any orders, there are no restrictions on those orders. The only difference in the bill is it allows the legislature to have a check and a balance,” said Senator Rob McColley, (R) Napoleon.

“This is not the time for us to take our foot off the pedal to make sure that we’re doing all that we can to protect our families and children in every way that we can,” said Senator Hearcel Craig, (D) Columbus.

Senator McColley says this bill is not in reaction to current orders, like the curfew but other republican lawmakers have been critical of the order and the new formula Governor DeWine laid out to get rid of it.

“The Governor said the other day that this virus is unpredictable, the frustration we have is what’s unpredictable is him moving the goal posts,” said Rep. Cross.

“This pandemic is not over, we are not near it being over so we cannot stop the mitigation and trying to stop the transmission piece of this,” said Rep. Allison Russo, (D) Upper Arlington.

Governor DeWine’s office says they are still reviewing Senate Bill 22 but previously the Governor has been critical of legislation limiting the power of health orders.

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