TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas lawmakers moved Tuesday to extend protections for businesses from lawsuits over COVID-19, while a prominent critic of Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly said the state’s vaccine distribution has improved in recent weeks.
The Republican-controlled Legislature is considering several measures arising out of the pandemic or Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly’s response to it. The Senate Judiciary Committee approved a bill that would give businesses an extra year of protection, until March 31, 2022, from lawsuits from customers or employees who contract COVID-19 if those businesses were “in substantial compliance” with public health orders.
The measure goes next to the Senate, which also was debating a bill to require all of the state’s local school districts to offer in-person classes to all of their students by March 26. Only a handful of the state’s 286 districts don’t plan to have a majority of their students back in classrooms by then, according to State Department of Education data.