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Lawmakers urge agency not provide vaccination recommendation

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HARTFORD — A contingent of Republican state lawmakers are urging Connecticut’s Department of Public Health commissioner not to comply with a request from top legislative Democrats to provide policy recommendations concerning vaccinations for schoolchildren.

The five state representatives say it’s “wholly inappropriate” for the agency to be asked to provide an opinion on whether the General Assembly should eliminate its religious exemption. The group says it’s not the charge of the Department of Public Health to “offer opinions on civil rights issues.”

Democratic Attorney General William Tong in May issued a non-binding ruling that said there’s nothing in state law to prevent lawmakers from scrapping the exemption.

A Department of Public Health spokesman says the agency had no public response to the GOP letter and it’s still researching the Democratic leaders’ questions.

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