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Idaho State Board of Education meets to discuss Biden federal contractor vaccine mandate

During the meeting, the board unanimously ratified last week’s decision to join the multi-state lawsuit against Biden’s federal contractor vaccine mandate
A nurse prepares to administer a COVID-19 vaccine at a clinic in West Columbia on Aug. 11, 2021.
A nurse prepares to administer a COVID-19 vaccine at a clinic in West Columbia on Aug. 11, 2021.(Mary Green)
Published: Nov. 2, 2021 at 3:40 PM MDT
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Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — The Idaho State Board of Education held a special meeting to discuss President Joe Biden’s executive order requiring employees of federal contractors to be fully vaccinated by Dec. 8.

During the meeting, State Board of Education President Kurt Liebich said following discussions with the governor’s office and state committees, the board decided to join a multi-state lawsuit against Biden’s federal contractor vaccine mandate.

Liebich continued by saying universities could lose up to $89 million in federal contracts should they refuse to comply with the order because the Biden executive order essentially requires those who work on research grants to be vaccinated.

“While many institutions, both private and public across the country, have mandated vaccines for not only for their staff and faculty, but also for their students, we in Idaho have not done that,” Liebich said.

The concern for the board, however, was ensuring federal contracts are not put in jeopardy pending the results of the multi-state lawsuit challenging the executive order.

“The pressing issue that’s in front of us is that’s going to take a while to play its way through the courts,” Liebich said. “There’s no certainty around timing nor the decision.”

During the meeting, the board unanimously ratified last week’s decision to join the multi-state lawsuit against Biden’s federal contractor vaccine mandate. They additionally approved allowing institutions to take steps towards complying with the order while the lawsuit is pending in order to avoid risking the universities’ federal contracts.

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