CLAYTON, Mo. – Two bills limiting the power of St. Louis County Executive Sam Page and the health department were approved by the county council today, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
This comes after they started reviewing public comments last week. The comments were in response to Page’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The bill tries to limit the powers of St. Louis County Executive Sam Page. He would only be allowed to issue a disaster declaration for 15 days; any extension would require county council approval.
In addition, the county executive would not be able to make COVID-19 health guidelines more restrictive than the state. To do that would also require county council approval.
Page says he will veto the bill if it passes because he doesn’t believe they support public health. He posted this message to Facebook Tuesday morning:
“The Council’s vote to end five public health orders endangers all lives. With the bills, our public health department will no longer:
- Have the ability to define when a positive case or suspected positive case should isolate or quarantine.
- Be able to require face coverings.
- Be able to set capacity limits for businesses including restaurants and bars (currently at 50%) or limit gatherings (currently at 50 people).
- Be able to require that residential living centers notify the health department of positive cases and deaths.
- Be able to require rapid notification to health department of positive cases, negative test results and deaths. I will veto this dangerous legislation.”