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Johnson County Board of Supervisors continues discussion on who should pay for COVID-19 tests once weekly testing is mandatory

Published: Dec. 6, 2021 at 6:08 PM CST
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IOWA CITY, Iowa (KCRG) - The Johnson County Board of Supervisors passed a new policy that will require all unvaccinated employees to get COVID-19 tests weekly. The conversation on technicalities -- like what types of tests people should use, and who should buy them -- is ongoing.

Supervisor Job Green told TV-9 that he describes that process as, “trying to hit a bullet with another bullet whilst riding a horse blindfolded.”

The guidance comes from OSHA, which paused enforcement as legal challenges mount.

“Employers of 100 or more employees have to have either a vaccination mandate or a vaccine/test mandate,” said Green.

He says this policy could have to be changed or updated due to the legal challenges.

“The standard is changing through litigation, and OSHA’s continuing to finalize it, and so we’re attempting to meet this moving target,” said Green.

Even though nothing has been finalized by OSHA, the board is still planning to implement those weekly tests for employees who are unvaccinated. It will start December 30th.

“We have a responsibility to our employees and the public that we serve regardless of OSHA ETS.”

Green says employee response has been mixed.

“I do have to weigh the fact that there are some folks who work for Johnson County who don’t want to be vaccinated. I hear them, but at the same time we have all sorts of responsibilities and requirements as part of being an employee here.”

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