Business Climate, Capitol Connection, COVID-19, News, News Alert, Newsletter|

President Biden’s vaccine mandate is officially out and set to take effect on January 4, 2022. At 490 pages, there’s a lot to digest in a very short period.
The Montana Chamber continues to be a strong advocate for vaccination to control the spread of the virus, but the filing of the OSHA Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) that requires certain employers to mandate vaccines or testing is an attack on employers’ rights.
We are strongly opposed to the President’s vaccine mandate. It creates a massive administrative, implementation, and compliance burden with equally enormous financial consequences for non-compliance. And it will likely have devastating impacts on our workforce—already near crisis levels for many employers.
In response, the Montana Chamber is taking the following actions on behalf of our members and the greater business community:
  • Engaging Montana’s Congressional Delegation- The Montana Chamber led a joint letter effort to Senator Tester along with other trade associations representing some of Montana’s largest employers. You can read the letter here.
  • Filing comments during the commenting phase- The Chamber’s comments will detail the various challenges employers will face presented by the proposed rule.
  • Exploring legal options- In addition to the lawsuit filed by Montana Attorney General Knudsen, we expect other lawsuits to be filed from across the country in the coming days. The Montana Chamber is evaluating other legal strategies most appropriate and effective, including coordinating with Montana’s Attorney General.
  • Keeping you informed- The Montana Chamber will keep you updated and share compliance strategies with our members and business community to help navigate the various complexities of the rule. Look for upcoming virtual meetings for businesses to share compliance strategies, including the practical impacts of Montana’s HB 702. You can also read the Chamber’s position on HB 702 here.
Affected businesses need to prepare for the January 4 effective date of the OSHA rule in the event court relief is not successful or timely.
President Biden’s vaccine mandate and its impacts on Montana’s economy and affected businesses have potentially devastating consequences and create massive regulatory burdens.
The Montana Chamber of Commerce is proactively acting on behalf of the Montana business community.
As always, feel free to reach out to me to share your challenges, and let me know how we can help.
Todd O’Hair
President and CEO
Montana Chamber of Commerce

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