Why is an unelected official making all the Covid decisions? Governor Dan McKee seems content to allow Dr. Nicole Alexander Scott to make all Covid decisions including decisions that are different than Massachusetts. Why is testing so slow? Why does the state now have different mandates than Massachusetts and Connecticut? Governor McKee seems to want to distance himself from decisions made by the RIDOH, but they are supposed to report to him. Why isn’t LT. Governor Matos in-charge of the Covid task force, which has the power to create problems for businesses? It was Dr. Scott who attended BLM protests and always spoke out about “equity” but was silent as $3K Covid bonuses were being handed out to union members. Dr. Scott who preached “equity” in treating Jamestown the same as Central Falls despite the obvious differences in population. Dr. Scott who is a progressive media darling and lectures the media on being “ambassadors” to spread her Covid message. Dr. Scott who clearly has an agenda is now running the Covid task force and will decide penalties? Read the official order:
“An enforcement task force (“Task Force”) is hereby established. The Task Force shall be composed of inspectors and other personnel that I assign from DBR, RIDOH and other departments of state government, as necessary. Notwithstanding any other provision of Rhode Island law, all inspection and enforcement authority for the emergency regulations promulgated by RIDOH shall be vested in the Task Force.
12. I authorize the Director of the Department of Administration (DOA) to transfer any State employee in the executive branch to the Task Force without regard to union status, union affiliation, seniority, and/or the employee’s formal job classification or prior duties. The Director of DOA is also authorized to implement workplace policies that may be necessary to effectuate this order.
13. Task Force inspectors shall conduct inspections of businesses, governmental establishments and other establishments as well as enforce the emergency regulations promulgated by RIDOH. The Task Force, through RIDOH, shall issue compliance orders under Chapter 1 of Title 23.
14. The Director of RIDOH or her designees are further authorized to assess civil penalties for violation of this Order. Such civil penalties shall be in addition to any other penalties authorized by law.
15. Nothing herein shall prohibit or otherwise prevent a business, organization, operation, or governmental establishment from developing, adopting and/or implementing a masking or COVID-19 vaccination policy that is more restrictive than this Order.
This Order shall take effect on December 20, 2021 and remain in full force and effect through January 18, 2022 unless renewed, modified, or terminated by a subsequent Executive Order.
Daniel J. McKee