Rep. Phil Green this week voted in support of a measure to provide legislative oversight of Michigan health orders issued during a pandemic or similar emergency.
The measure would limit emergency rules issued by the Department of Health and Human Services to 28 days and require legislative approval for an extension. This would align health rule practice with the 1976 law requiring legislative approval to extend a state of emergency declared by the governor beyond 28 days.
“The Michigan Supreme Court made it clear that even during times of emergency, the Legislature and the governor should be working together to do what’s best for our state,” said Green, of Millington. “The current law related to health rules doesn’t have a time limit for legislative approval to kick in – but it should, and it should mirror our state of emergency law. The governor can’t extend a state of emergency beyond 28 days without legislative approval, and a governor’s department head should not be allowed to do so either.”
Another part of the plan will restore balance by reining in the broad authority the DHHS currently has when issuing emergency health orders. It would prohibit state government from forcing a business to close if it is complying with health and safety precautions.
The legislation – Senate Bill 1253 – will soon advance to the governor for her consideration.
Rep. Green talks about the challenges facing Michigan agriculture during COVID, saying transportation issues and diminished markets have caused complications for the industry, but adding there is also good news about improved processing opportunities in the state.
State Rep. Phil Green, of Millington, is demanding a federal investigation into Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s controversial COVID-19 nursing home policies that have put Michigan’s long-term care residents and staff in danger.