State Rep. Tony Scott, R-Monroe, issued the following statement after a recent vote in the House to extend a list of Governor Lamont’s emergency orders, including a mask mandate for children while in school:
“I supported the extension of at least some of the orders, but unfortunately because we weren’t given an opportunity to vote on them individually, I had no choice, but to vote no to any extension.
Some of the orders I supported included preventing out-of-network insurance providers from billing vaccine providers above the Medicare rate for that service and to modify protocols that would have increased the amount of available healthcare workers who could treat COVID patients.
Thursday evening, I voted no to extending the governor’s orders, which will continue a mask mandate for children while they are in school. The language in those orders extends that mandate through June, but the governor has indicated he will transfer decision making about those mandates to local boards of education on Feb. 28.
House Republicans also introduced an amendment last night that would have allowed for parents to choose whether they wanted to opt out of mask mandates for their children while they are in school, but Democrats who have the majority in the House, voted it down.
Parents were only given the chance to comment on these orders for their children during a last-minute public hearing that took place a day before the legislative session began. Dozens testified and the majority of them wanted an end to the school mask mandate. Parents know what is best for their children and the constituents I heard from on this issue overwhelmingly wanted to have that choice in their hands.”