Roanoke County State Senator David Suetterlein wants his General Assembly Colleagues to limit the time any governor’s executive orders can remain in effect – but Governor Northam’s office says that’s a bad idea. His bill would require General Assembly affirmation of an executive order within 45 days of issuance or it would no longer remain in effect. More from WFIR’s Evan Jones:
SB 5008 SUMMARY: Emergency Services and Disaster Law; limitation on duration of executive orders. Limits the duration of any executive order issued by the Governor pursuant to his powers under the Emergency Services and Disaster Law to no more than 45 days from the date of issuance. The bill provides that if the General Assembly does not take any action on the rule, regulation, or order within the 45 days during which the rule, regulation, or order is effective, the Governor shall thereafter be prohibited from issuing the same or a similar rule, regulation, or order relating to the same emergency. Under current law, once issued, such executive orders are effective until June 30 following the next regular session of the General Assembly.
STATEMENT FROM NORTHAM PRESS SECRETARY ALENA YARMOSKY: Emergencies can change fast, and COVID-19 shows that they are not always limited to some arbitrary time frame like 45 days. And since the law requires the Governor to respond to emergencies and to mitigate their effects on Virginians, he or she must be able to act swiftly and with flexibility, as changing conditions require. Under Senator Suetterlein’s proposed bill, Virginia’s response to the pandemic would have ended months ago in May, effectively leaving 8.5 million Virginians without a leader during a worldwide health crisis. That’s a bad idea, and so is this bill.