Florida Fines County $3.5M Over Vaccine Mandate


The Florida Department of Health fined Leon County more than $3.5 million last week after it fired over a dozen workers for refusing to show proof of receiving a COVID-19 vaccine.

Florida sent a letter to Leon County administrator Vincent Long on Wednesday notifying him that the county has been found to have violated state law 714 times and would be fined $3.57 million. Long said he would fight the fines and “enforce its rights” against the state.

“By way of media reports, Leon County was made aware of a notice from the Florida Department of Health regarding the County’s vaccination requirement,” Long told Fox 4. “There is a genuine disagreement about the applicability of the statute and rule, and the County will enforce its rights using any remedies available at law, if necessary.”

Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis blasted Leon County on September 13 for firing 14 employees who refused to show proof of vaccination.

“We are going to protect Florida jobs. We are not going to let people be fired because of a vaccine mandate,” DeSantis said at the time, according to Fox 4. “You don’t just cast aside people who’ve been serving faithfully over this issue over, what’s basically a personal choice on their individual health. We cannot let these folks be cast aside. We cannot allow their jobs to be destroyed and their families and livelihoods, potentially, to be destroyed as well.”

Gov. DeSantis signed legislation in May barring businesses and government agencies from requiring employees show proof of vaccination. The legislation also banned the enforcement of so-called “vaccine passport” policies by private and public organizations.

“Over the last year we’ve avoided protracted lockdowns and school closures in Florida b... (Read more)

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