Politics

Glenn Youngkin Issues Executive Order Ending Further Virginia Covid Fines

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James Lynch Reporter
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Virginia GOP Gov. Glenn Youngkin issued an executive order Dec. 6 to end the collection of fines related to covid-shutdown guidelines, his office announced in a press release.

Youngkin announced he will “direct agencies to halt further collection and enforcement action in his upcoming budget,” according to a press release. The Secretary of Finance will be directed to “work with agencies to develop a reimbursement process for individuals and businesses who paid unjust COVID-19 fines and fees.”

The budget will be delivered Dec. 15 and “will not apply to instances where the violation was in relation to practices, guidelines, rules or operating procedures intended to protect the health and safety of individuals, patients, residents, and staff of hospitals, nursing homes, certified nursing facilities, hospices, or assisted living facilities,” the press release clarifies.

“I am today requiring a statewide review of COVID-19 related penalties imposed by the Northam administration. The fact that businesses are still dealing with COVID-19 related penalties and fines is infuriating. Livelihoods are on the line,” Youngkin said in the press release.

“In the previous administration, we saw our government shut down businesses, close our schools, and separate us from each other. While we can’t undo the damage done during the Northam administration, we are taking action going forward to end COVID-era draconian overreach,” Youngkin added.

Youngkin is also directing state agencies to report to the Director of Finance “all fines, fees, interest imposed, and all other disciplinary actions imposed on all individuals, businesses, and non-profits” no later than January 15, 2023, the order says.

The Secretary of Finance, or his designee, will “review all such disciplinary actions and make recommendations to the Governor on what if any corrective action can be taken under the law,” the order specifies.

State agencies broadly include secretariat offices, executive branch agencies, institutions of higher education, and “authorities, boards, and Commissions established within the Executive Branch by the Code of Virginia or designated under a Secretariat in the Code of Virginia,” the order states. (RELATED: House Intends To Revoke Military Vaccine Mandate In Defense Spending Bill)

A Youngkin spokesperson directed the Daily Caller to the executive order in response to a request for comment.