Overwhelmingly, Izzy’s Bill passes Ga. Senate, goes to House
AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - A local family’s fight to prevent drownings in private swimming lessons took another step forward Wednesday with passage in the state Senate.
The proposal known as Izzy’s Law was opposed by only one senator and received a standing ovation from lawmakers.
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The state House is the next stop for the bill proposing more regulations on private swimming lessons.
The bill, sponsored by Sen. Max Burns, R-Sylvania, was proposed in honor of Izzy Scott, a 4-year-old who drowned on his second day of swimming lessons at a private pool in Burke County.
Scott’s instructor, Lexie Tenhuisen was arrested and charged in January with involuntary manslaughter. But before those charges, the case went from the hands of the sheriff’s office to the district attorney, to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, and then back to the district attorney.
Part of the reason for the hold-up is that Georgia does not have many regulations on private swim lessons or instructors. With the spring season approaching, getting this bill signed into law is a top priority for several lawmakers.
READ THE LEGISLATION:
Izzy’s Law would require the Department of Public Health to develop a widely accessible and downloadable safety plan for aquatic activities based on the standards for nationally accredited swim instructors.
Specifically, Izzy’s Law would require that each swim instructor has a safety plan including but not limited to:
- A necessary student-to-instructor ratio.
- Presence of a secondary supervisor to assist in the safety of all swimmers
- Allowing all parents and guardians to be present at private swim lessons
“I am proud of my Senate colleagues for passing Izzy’s Law,” Burns said. “This bill is incredibly important to me, as I have worked closely with Izzy’s family through every step of the legislative process.”
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