Bills would give legislature, not bureaucrats, direct say in vaccine requirements

Categories: Johnson News,Steven Johnson News

State Reps. Steve Johnson and John Reilly today introduced legislation that would require new mandated vaccine guidelines to be approved by a vote of the state legislature.

“As chair of the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules, I often see state departments proposing rules that attempt to go beyond the scope of what the legislature originally intended,” said Johnson, R-Wayland. “This is not simply because we have an out-of-control bureaucracy, but also because the legislature has given this power to the departments in the first place. These bills would ensure people would be able to hold their elected officials accountable for changes to vaccine practices instead of unelected bureaucrats.”

The proposed legislation would remove the Department of Health and Human Services’ authority to implement new mandated vaccine guidelines. Instead, a legislative vote would be required to create  new vaccine mandates or propose changes to existing vaccination requirements. Mandated vaccine requirements currently in place would not be changed or affected by the passage of this legislation.

“It should require the highest evidentiary standard and an undeniably compelling public interest for any medicine to be forced upon the public by law,” said Reilly, R-Oakland. “Such an extraordinary decision should be made by the people’s elected representatives, not unaccountable bureaucrats.”

House Bills 5162 and 5163 have been referred to the House Oversight Committee for further consideration.