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Committee challenges UW COVID rules

Posted at 3:15 p.m. on August 4, 2021

The Brillion News

MADISON - The Wisconsin state legislature's Joint Committee for the Review of Administrative Rules (JCRAR), on August 3, voted 6-4 to require the University of Wisconsin System to follow state law and go through the administrative rules process for COVID-19 mandates for students and visitors to its campuses.

That action - along party lines - gives the UW System 30 days to issue an emergency rule or stop issuing pandemic-related mandates.

That process places emergency rules under the review authority of the JCRAR - and the committee could suspend all or parts of the mandates.

"Today, the legislature through JCRAR has told the UW System they can no longer ignore state law with regards to COVID-19 mandates impacting students and campus visitors," said the JCRAR co-chair, state Senator Steve Nass, R-Whitewater. "The path forward in addressing COVID-19 is not through excessive government mandates, but in restoration of Americans being able to make voluntary informed decisions based on their individual health circumstances."

State Representative Adam Neylon, R-Pewaukee, said UW rules have the same impact as law and must be governed by a body of elected representatives.

"As of now, several UW campuses are seeking masking and testing policies enacted on campuses with university police departments reserving the ability to enforce suck policies," Neylon said. "What comes next?"

He said he fears mandated vaccinations are possible, and called "the power to unilaterally require vaccinations is an incredibly dangerous precedent to set."

~ Ed Byrne/BN from original documents and press statements.


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