You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Judge rules NYSDOH exceeded authority with COVID-19 regulation

WRGB Albany logo WRGB Albany 7/12/2022 WRGB Staff
© Provided by WRGB Albany

Three Republican state lawmakers have won a lawsuit against NYS challenging the constitutionality of New York State Department of Health regulations. 

State Supreme Court Judge Ronald Ploetz of Cattaraugus County ruled on Friday that the New York State Department of Health exceeded its authority by using a rulemaking process for Isolation and Quarantine procedures.

The regulation in question,  10 NYCRR 2.13,  establishes isolation and quarantine procedures for those who are suspected of having a transmissible disease. The proposed regulation was adopted as an emergency regulation on February 22, 2022 and has been renewed at 90-day intervals through July 20, 2022. It has also been published in the New York State Register for permanent adoption through the rulemaking process.

Senator George Borrello (R-Chautauqua County) and  Assembly members Michael Lawler (R-Rockland County) and Chris Tague (R-Schoharie) and the organization Uniting NYS, brought on a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the regulation, arguing that it violates the separation of powers.

MORE: Biden awards 'highest civilian honor' to first American to receive a COVID-19 vaccine

Judge Ploetz found the rule afforded "no such due process protections" because it gave the health commissioner full discretion to issue quarantine and isolation orders even if there is no evidence that a person is infected or is carrying the disease. 

"Involuntary detention is a severe deprivation of individual liberty, far more egregious than other health safety measures, such as requiring mask wearing at certain venues. Involuntary quarantine may have far reaching consequences such as loss of income (or employment) and isolation from family. This goes beyond the public health law governing these types of orders that was already on the books before the pandemic," the judge wrote. 

Local state assemblyman Chris Tague (R-Schoharie) is one of the lawmakers involved in this lawsuit.

Tague says "This regulation was unconstitutional, inhumane, and had no place existing as law within a free society."

There's no word yet from the governor's office on what their next move may be.

In the past - they have defended these kinds of pandemic emergency orders as necessary due to the spread of COVID-19.

It's unclear whether the case will be appealed. 

The full ruling can be found here


More from WRGB Albany

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon