Plans curbing Indiana governor’s emergency power face doubts


Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb speaks after receiving his Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine during the state’s first mass vaccination clinic at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Friday, March 5, 2021, in Indianapolis. The state health department said nearly 17,000 people had filled up four days of appointments for the speedway clinic being held Friday through Monday. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana legislators remain determined to limit the governor’s executive order power as the state reaches a full year under a public health emergency from the coronavirus pandemic.

Lawmakers have advanced bills that would curb a governor’s authority to impose emergency restrictions such as mask rules and business closures, although Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb and others question whether those proposals written by Republican lawmakers are allowed under the state constitution.

The differing proposals passed by the House and Senate would set up ways to either force the governor to call lawmakers into a special session during a long-lasting emergency or give legislative leaders new authority to take such action.

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