The House Republican Caucus Chairman has filed a resolution to suspend the Governor’s ability to declare a public health emergency as it relates to the coronavirus.

Erath Representative Blake Miguez says the objective is to put local leaders in control of reopening the economy.

“It temporarily suspends the Governor’s emergency enforcement powers, which means he could not enforce the stay at home order for a temporary period of time,” says Miguez.

Miguez says he’s disappointed Governor Edwards extended the stay at home order to May 15th. He says the resolution will pressure Edwards to implement Phase One after the order ends.

“If you do not open back up on May 15th the Legislature has this instrument in the process, we could remove your powers and get it going earlier,” says Miguez.

A legislative petition is circling that would also end the public health emergency, but many fear it would result in a substantial loss of federal funds. Miguez says unlike the petition this order does not technically end the public health emergency tied to receiving federal funds, it just removes the Governor’s enforcement powers. He believes that would not endanger potential Stafford Act funding.

Governor Edwards has labeled legislative attempts to overturn the order “completely irresponsible”, and called this one “misguided. Edwards does not believe the Legislature will do it.

“We are going to move forward with the phased approach, which by the way is the President’s plan for reopening America,” says Edwards.

A majority of the House and Senate would need to vote in support for passage.

(Story written by Matt Doyle/Louisiana Radio Network)

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