Hawaii, Laredo Ramp Up Fines And Threats For Bat Soup Virus Violators

These could make for some interesting Constitutional, both state and federal, lawsuits. Does Hawaii and Laredo, Texas, have the authority to do this?

Hawaii will fine self-quarantine violators $5,000 or send them to prison

If you were thinking of riding out the pandemic in sunny Hawaii, think again: Anyone traveling between the state’s islands must quarantine themselves for two weeks.

And breaking that quarantine order to gulp some fresh air could earn you a hefty fine — or a prison sentence.

Hawaii Gov. David Ige signed a proclamation on Monday that requires residents and visitors who travel between islands to quarantine themselves for 14 days.

Anyone who violates the mandatory quarantine could face up to $5,000 in fines or a year in prison, if convicted.

Is it self quarantine or mandatory quarantine? What’s the difference between going to a different island and going down the street to the market? Let’s not forget

In Florida, a megachurch pastor was arrested and charged with unlawful assembly and a violation of health emergency rules for holding services for hundreds of churchgoers. A Louisiana pastor who held services and said the virus was a political ploy was hit with similar charges.

Police have broken up weddings and house parties in New Jersey and charged hosts with disorderly conduct. Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said residents who violate the stay-at-home order could face a misdemeanor charge or be jailed for up to a year.

And to Laredo

(The Blaze) City leaders in Laredo, Texas, have moved to criminalize the act of entering a public building without a facial covering amid the coronavirus pandemic. Violators of the order face arrest and a fine of up to $1,000.

The Laredo City Council passed a mandate obtained by Reuters dictating that beginning Thursday, “all persons over the age of five (5) are required to wear some form of covering over their nose and mouth, such as a homemade mask, scarf, bandana, or handkerchief, when: entering into or inside of any building open to the public; when using public transportation, taxis, or ride shares; or when pumping gas.”

“The penalty for a violation of this section shall be a Class C misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not more than $1,000.00,” the order read.

This is at least something passed by a duly elected legislative body specifically, rather than an executive pronouncement. But, is there Constitutional authority? How about statutory authority from the state and/or federal level? That applies to all. At least the Laredo one really makes sense.

The Times reported that concern was expressed during the council’s meeting that the fines attached to the new order might be too steep, particularly for citizens impacted by the economic downturn caused by the coronavirus epidemic. To that, Councilman George Altgelt replied, “I’d rather bury them in debt than bury them in a coffin.”

Criminals are super enthused that law enforcement is being distracted.

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One Response to “Hawaii, Laredo Ramp Up Fines And Threats For Bat Soup Virus Violators”

  1. Dana says:

    The state has no flaming idea how many people move from island to island in private boats.

    However, only four of the islands — Hawai’i, Maui, O’ahu and Kaua’i really have much population and movement. Moloka’i and Lana’i are poorer and more rural, while Ni’ihau is privately owned and travel there has long been restricted. They could remain completely isolated from COVID-19.

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