House Passes SB8, Senate Concurs with Changes

March 16, 2021 11:17 AM | Kentucky Medical Freedom Coalition (Administrator)

On Friday, March 12, the House passed SB8 by a vote of 77-20. A total of eight floor amendments were filed to propose various changes to the bill, but ultimately none of the floor amendments were approved. 

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House floor vote on SB8

The House did, however, make a very small change when the bill passed through the House Health & Family Services Committee. The bill used the term "medical provider" in regard to medical exemptions, and this was changed to "health care provider" to be consistent with current terminology. Because of this small change, it was necessary for the bill to return for the Senate in order for the Senate to "concur" with the changes. On March 16 the Senate voted to concur with the change with a vote of 33-1. 

You can watch a recording of the House floor debate on SB8 here. Be sure to click on Part 1. The discussion begins at approximately 29:27.

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Senate concurrence vote of 33-1

After a few more procedural steps, SB8 will be sent to the Governor for action. The Governor can sign the bill into law, not sign the bill and it can become law without signature, or veto. If the Governor vetoes the bill, the legislature would have the opportunity to override the veto on the final days of the session, March 29 or 30. The Governor has 10 days to act upon the bill, not counting Sundays.

About SB8

If the state were to ever mandate a vaccine due to an epidemic, be it COVID or any other disease, the language in SB8 would allow any Kentuckian to claim a medical, religious, or conscientious belief/philosophical exemption. The current bill does not add or remove anything from the current medical and religious exemptions for daycare or K-12 attendance.

The original bill language would have also added a philosophical exemption for daycare and K-12, but this language was removed in the Senate due to pushback from schools and medical groups. You can read the entire text as it currently stands 
here


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