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  Florida fines county $3.5 million for requiring proof of vaccination
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ContributorIndyGeorgia 
Last EditedIndyGeorgia  Oct 13, 2021 02:49pm
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AuthorDartunorro Clark
News DateWednesday, October 13, 2021 02:55:00 AM UTC0:0
DescriptionThe Florida Health Department fined a county government over $3.5 million Tuesday for violating the state's ban on vaccination passports — the first time the state has punished a locality for defying the ban.

The Health Department said in a statement that officials in Leon County, where Tallahassee, the state capital, is located, violated state law when they mandated in late July that the county's 700 employees provide proof of vaccination no later than Oct. 1. Then, on Oct. 4, county officials fired 14 employees for failing to comply with the requirement.

"It is unacceptable that Leon County violated Florida law, infringed on current and former employees' medical privacy, and fired loyal public servants because of their personal health decisions," Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, said in a statement.

DeSantis, who has consistently resisted mask and vaccination mandates even as case numbers rise, signed a bill in May to ban vaccination passports — particularly banning local governments from requiring any person, including an employee, to provide proof of vaccination. The law, which took effect last month, also provides for fines of $5,000 per violation.
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