FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) – An effort to prevent COVID-19 vaccine mandates in Kentucky advanced Tuesday after a state House committee reined in the bill’s reach to exclude private employers.

The measure was introduced in early January but made no headway for more than two months until the more limited version cleared the Republican-led House State Government Committee. The proposal heads next to the full House.

Republican Rep. Savannah Maddox, the bill’s lead sponsor, acknowledged on social media that provisions applying to private employers were “polarizing to a point that the bill had begun to languish.” Those provisions were removed from the substitute version approved by the committee.

The bill still applies to public colleges and universities as well as local and state governments. It would bar them from requiring disclosure of a person’s coronavirus-related immunization status.

The measure would allow parents to opt out of a COVID-19 vaccine for their school-aged children on the basis of a “conscientious objection.” It also would prohibit vaccine passports.

“The intention is to create as broad protections as possible for Kentuckians to be able to decide for themselves whether or not to receive a vaccine,” Maddox told the committee.

Maddox has been mentioned as a potential gubernatorial candidate next year.