On February 8, Senator Rosilicie Ochoa-Bogh (R-Yucaipa), introduced Senate Bill 336 which would require that, before the State Department of Public Health (DPH) or a local health official takes measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, DPH and local health officials would be required to publish these measures for 72 hours on their internet website and reach out to local organizations representing local business interests.
SB 336 would add and repeal Chapter 1.5 (commencing with Section 120120) of Part 1 of Division 105 of the Health and Safety Code. As an urgency measure, it would take effect immediately upon signature by the Governor.
The bill would remain in effect while a measure taken by either DPH or a local health officer related to COVID-19 is in effect. As an urgency measure, it would require a 2/3 vote in both houses in order to reach the Governor’s Desk. In Section One of the bill, it would add Chapter 1.5 (commencing with Section 120120) to Part 1 of Division 105 of the Health and Safety Code. Chapter 1.5 would be called “COVID-19 Related Public Health Orders.”
The new legislation would preclude the measures DPH and local health officers who take measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 or protect public health against a threat of COVID-19 to be effective unless the measures are:
- Published on its internet website for 72 hours prior to those measures taking effect and becoming enforceable.
- Contacted local organizations representing local business interests, including, but not limited to, a Chamber of Commerce or a Rotary Club in each county.
According to the urgency clause, the measure must go into effect immediately “In order to provide notice to employers, employees, and businesses of the necessary measures to protect public health, so that proper protocols may be implemented to ensure the safe and robust functioning of the economy and labor markets during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
The measure is expected to be heard in its first policy committee in late March.