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Sanders County health officer resigns

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Posted at 11:04 AM, Sep 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-18 13:42:54-04

Sanders County Health Officer Nick Lawyer announced Friday he is resigning at the request of county commissioners.

Lawyer wrote on Twitter that he is "disappointed" to be leaving during a "time of great need for evidence based health measures."

He added in his letter that he understands the comissioners' choice in asking him to resign, and their desire to govern "without the strife and conflict coming from a minority of people objecting to my recommendations and actions."

Lawyer confirmed on social media that his resignation came in part as a response to a column he wrote in the Flathead Beacon, touting the safety and effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines. He wrote that commissioners said he should've have gotten their permission before sending out the column and other letters.

As of Saturday, Sanders County had 124 active COVID-19 cases and 16 deaths, according to the state's COVID-19 tracking map.

Of those eligible, 36 percent of Sanders County residents are fully vaccinated, well below the state's 51 percent rate.