Senator Steve Nass (R-Whitewater), Co-chairman of the Joint Committee for Review of Administrative Rules (JCRAR), announced that the joint committee voted 6-4 today to require UW System to follow the law and issue an emergency rule if campuses want to issue Covid-19 mandates for students and campus visitors. The UW System, under the law, now has up to 30 days to issue an emergency rule or cease issuing Covid-19 mandates for students and campus visitors. Any emergency rule issued by the UW System would then be under the review authority of JCRAR and the joint committee could suspend parts or all of the emergency rule.
Senator Nass’ statement:
“Today, the legislature through JCRAR has told the UW System they can no longer ignore state law with regards to Covid-19 mandates impacting students and campus visitors. Government issued Covid-19 mandates and lockdowns have failed miserably in dealing with this virus. The path forward in addressing Covid-19 is not through excessive government mandates, but in the restoration of Americans being able to make voluntary informed decisions based on their individual health circumstances.”
The motion passed by JCRAR today 6-4 reads:
That the Joint Committee for Review of Administrative Rules, pursuant to s. 227.26 (2) (b), Stats., determines that the policies of the Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System relating to requirements associated with its response to the Covid-19 pandemic meet the definition of rules under s. 227.01 (13), Stats., and directs the agency to promulgate its current Covid-19 policies as emergency rules within 30 days, and to promulgate any similar, subsequent policies as emergency rules at the time of their adoption. The requirements subject to this directive include all Covid-19 policies that relate to physical access to system property, as well as all Covid-19 policies under which an individual may be subject to disciplinary action, whether the policies are adopted directly by the agency or by its delegates on a campus-by-campus basis.