Proposed law requires governor to meet with emergency panel

Governor Doug Ducey on March 11, 2020 issued a Declaration of Emergency and an Executive Order to provide health officials and administrators with tools and guidance necessary to combat the continued spread of COVID-19./Governor’s Office/YouTube

By Howard Fischer | Capitol Media Services  

With the declared emergency now a full year old, state lawmakers are moving to force Gov. Doug Ducey to finally use the existing Statewide Emergency Council that was specifically created to advise him and monitor his activities.

SB1719 spells out that Ducey — and any future chief executive — must convene the council within 14 days of declaration. Then the governor has to convene the council at least once every 14 days thereafter during the emergency.

And if the governor does not, then the state of emergency is automatically terminated.

The measure, which already cleared the Senate on a unanimous vote, gained the approval of the House Committee on Government and Elections on Wednesday on a 9-4 margin. It now goes to the full House.

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