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Act for Public Health: State Limits on Enforcement of Federal Law

We're currently migrating this dataset. To explore these data, visit our Legacy Site.

You can also visit Laws Addressing Public Health Authority to Respond to Emergencies to see states that have enacted laws addressing authority to respond to public health emergencies between May 21, 2022, and December 21, 2023. 

State officers are generally permitted, but not required to, enforce federal laws under the U.S. federal system. Yet throughout COVID-19, a handful of states introduced bills aiming to regulate, and in many cases restrict, the enforcement of federal public health laws.

This longitudinal dataset captures details of legislation seeking to limit the enforcement of federal law introduced between January 1, 2021, and May 20, 2022, in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. Each individual bill is coded as a separate instance and labeled by its bill number. When querying the map below, states with multiple bills will appear as purple; click the state to learn more information about the different bills within that state.

This dataset is one of six that were created in collaboration with the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials and the Network for Public Health Law as part of the Act for Public Health initiative.


Dataset Details Supporting Documents
Created by Center for Public Health Law Research Data
Date range: January 1, 2021 – May 20, 2022 Codebook
Jurisdictions: 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia Protocol