SALT LAKE CITY — Lawmakers are implementing some tough new restrictions to avoid COVID-19 from spreading in the Utah State Capitol, including closing the rotunda.
The House and Senate are suspending "notes" from being sent in from outside their chamber doors. Instead, they will encourage constituents and lobbyists to text and email their lawmakers. Face-to-face meetings are being discouraged.
The House took steps to ban non-essential personnel from the floor during meetings. It also would no longer open the main chamber doors where lawmakers often rush out to interact with the public who seeks to lobby them on an issue. Last week, House Speaker Brad Wilson instituted a "no handshake" rule ahead of Utah's first novel coronavirus case.
Read the list of rules here:
The Senate did not go as far. In fact, Senate President J. Stuart Adams declined to implement a "no handshake" rule, but did discourage lawmakers from doing it.
In a memo to senators, the Utah State Senate said it would be having common areas and door handles wiped down more frequently.