Governor Parson Yesterday Signed HB 271 Regarding Local Public Health Orders and Vaccine Passports

Governor Parson Signs HB 271 Regarding Local Public Health Orders and Vaccine Passports

(JEFFERSON CITY, MO) – Today, Governor Mike Parson signed HB 271 into law, which establishes greater accountability for local leaders when imposing public health orders and prohibits local COVID-19 vaccine passports.

“This legislation I am signing today requires local leaders to be more transparent in their reasoning and accountable for their decisions when it comes to public health orders,” Governor Parson said. “It also prohibits local, publicly funded entities from requiring a vaccine passport in order for residents to use public services, and while we encourage all Missourians to get vaccinated against COVID-19, it is not the government’s job to force them.”

Under HB 271, political subdivisions may only issue public health orders that directly or indirectly restrict access to businesses, churches, schools, or other places of assembly for 30 calendar days in a 180-day period when the governor has declared a state of emergency. Orders may be extended more than once with a simple majority vote by the local governing body.

If a state of emergency has not been issued by the governor, political subdivisions may only issue orders that limit access to businesses, churches, schools, or other places of assembly for 21 calendar days in a 180-day period. These orders may be extended more than once with a two-thirds vote by the local governing body.

Additionally, HB 271 prohibits county or municipal governments that receive public funds from requiring documentation of COVID-19 vaccination in order for residents to access transportation systems or other public services.

“We appreciate the leadership of Senator Sandy Crawford and Representative John Wiemann in working to get this legislation passed,” Governor Parson said.