Blackfoot Valley Dispatch - The Blackfoot Valley's News Source Since 1980

By Austin Amestoy
UM Legislative News Service University of Montana School of Journalism 

Public Health Boards Under the Microscope in Montana Legislature


Last updated 2/2/2021 at 4:07pm

Austin Amestoy / UM Legislative News Service

Rep. Paul Fielder, R-Thompson Falls, introduces House Bill 145 to members of the Montana House Local Government Committee on Tuesday, Jan. 19. Fielder's bill would prohibit all orders from local health boards, instead allowing them to issue "recommendations" that would have to be approved by the local government. The committee tabled the bill 17-0, and unless it is revived, it won't go further through the Legislature.

HELENA -- The COVID-19 pandemic brought a flood of new orders and guidelines from local health departments for businesses across Montana, including particularly tricky ones for owners and employees on mask use. Jim Edwards, the owner of Pattee Creek Market in Missoula said his business adapted, putting up plastic screens and increasing cleaning. But, he said ordering his employees to enforce a...

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