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Senate Passes Johnson Bill Providing Accountability and Oversight of Public Health Orders

February 17, 2021
Terry Johnson News
COLUMBUS—State Senator Terry Johnson (R-McDermott) today announced the Senate passage of Senate Bill 22, his legislation which provides additional legislative oversight for public health orders in response to executive actions taken during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The bill would establish the bi-partisan, bicameral Ohio Health Oversight and Advisory Committee. The Committee would provide legislative oversight regarding actions taken by the Governor and the Ohio Department of Health during a statewide public health emergency.

“This bill will go a long way toward strengthening our ability to respond to health emergencies in Ohio," said Senator Johnson. "It in no way limits a governor’s timely response to health crises. It simply ensures that the direct representatives of the people of Ohio—their state representatives and senators—have meaningful input into the process.”

The bill also permits the General Assembly to adopt a resolution to terminate a public health state of emergency after thirty days, and may rescind a related executive order or rule eleven days after the initial emergency declaration is made. If a health order is rescinded, it may not be reissued for thirty days.

Senate Bill 22 will now be sent to the Ohio House for consideration.