COLUMBUS—State Senator Bill Reineke (R-Tiffin) this week announced the Senate passage of Senate Bill 22, 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 future actions taken by the current or future Governor and the Ohio Department of Health during a statewide public health emergency.
“This bill is not about denying the science," said Reineke. "COVID-19 is a very real health concern for all of us. Senate Bill 22 is about ensuring that there is consistency in how health orders are implemented and ensuring checks and balances are consistent with the Ohio Constitution. All of Ohio’s constituents are the Governor’s constituents too, and they deserve input into this process through their legislators."
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 If a health order is rescinded, it may not be reissued for thirty days.