Arkansas governor signs bills banning vaccine requirements

Arkansas News

FILE – In this July 20, 2020 file photo, Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson removes his mask before a briefing at the state capitol in Little Rock. Arkansas lawmakers on Wednesday, April 28, 2021, approved a reworked bill that aims to preempt federal gun restrictions following objections from the governor, law enforcement and prosecutors that a previous proposal went too far and jeopardized public safety. (Staci Vandagriff/The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette via AP, File)

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson has signed into law measures preventing state and local governments from requiring the coronavirus vaccine or proof of vaccination in order to access services.

Hutchinson on Wednesday signed the two bills, saying they confirm his position that the vaccine shouldn’t be a requirement for state employment and noting that they have some exceptions.

Hutchinson has not said whether he’ll sign another bill on his desk that would the state or local governments from imposing mask mandates.

Arkansas’ virus cases on Wednesday rose by 291 to 335,289 since the pandemic began.

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