The governor’s authority to declare disaster emergencies would be severely restricted under legislation unanimously approved by a Senate committee Tuesday.
Sen. Sue Glick’s (R-LaGrange) bill would only allow the governor to declare a widespread emergency, affecting at least 10 counties, for 45 days without the General Assembly getting to weigh in.
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If the legislature is in session – or gets called into special session by the governor – the emergency could go for 60 days. But after that, Glick said only lawmakers could extend the emergency declaration further.
“So that people don’t feel like they were left out or don’t feel that they had any input into the orders that affected so many people,” Glick said.
The bill also gives the legislature more authority on how to spend federal dollars that come to the state during an emergency.