Legislature Passes Bill That Removes Legislative Input In A Pandemic

Apr 8, 2021

Credit Bob Beck

The Wyoming Legislature has approved a bill that changes how health orders are issued. It gives the governor and county commissioners power to approve extended health orders in a pandemic.

But the House and Senate agreed to take legislative approval out of the mix, despite the insistence of some that the lawmakers need to have some say. Casper Rep. Chuck Gray complained that the legislature was giving too much authority to the executive branch. House Labor and Health Chairwoman Sue Wilson said that's not the legislature's role.

"We are to write the laws. The legislature's role is not to pull the levers and push the buttons 12 months of the year," said Wilson. "That's not what we do. We write the laws, and that's what we are doing now."

The bill also allows for a 48 hour public comment period if the health order is not addressing an emergency. The bill now goes to the governor for his consideration.