HB 215 sponsored by Reps. Shane Wilkin and Jon Cross and SB 134 sponsored by Senator George Lang are titled the “Business Fairness Act”. The bills basically says that health orders can’t close businesses if other businesses are allowed to stay open so long as they follow the safety precautions for those business permitted to continue to stay open. A prime example with this is flower shops. During the initial COVID shut down, flower shops were ordered closed. BUT you could still buy flowers at Walmart that was allowed to remain open, putting those other small businesses at a disadvantage. So, under this bill (if enacted) that small flower shop could stay open if they follow the protocols. Additionally, for amusement rides, the state allowed large amusement parks to open, but kept the portable ride industry shutdown.
The House Bill was the vehicle for enactment. It was favorably passed by the House by a vote of 75-16. The Senate passed the bill unanimously. The bill was signed by the Governor on December 1st and will officially go into effect on February 28, 2022.