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Panel passes bill killing notary requirement

SHARE Panel passes bill killing notary requirement

Parents of school-age children shouldn't have to drive to their local county health departments to get a "personal" exemption notarized for their children's immunization records, says Rep. Becky Lockhart, R-Provo.

Her bill doing away with the health department notarization passed the House Health and Human Services Committee on Tuesday morning.

Gayle Ruzicka of Utah Eagle Forum said it is an imposition, especially to single and working mothers, to have to get the signature of the health department official to waive the immunization requirements, which are required by law before a child can be registered in schools.

Darryl White, superintendent of the Davis School District, opposed HB243, saying experience has shown him that before the health department signature was required some parents would arrive at school, be told they had to have proof of immunization for their child and then sign the waiver "just for convenience."

But state Health Department officials testified they could find no evidence in other states that doing away with the witnesses' signature resulted in more children not being immunized or in higher sickness rates in public schools.

Now, said Lockhart, the parent who must go to the health department "is put through a guilt trip" by department officials before they sign the card, lecturing parents on the value of immunizing their children when the parents probably have studied the issues for and against such vaccinations.