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Whitmer extends emergency declaration without legislature

After the House refused to extend the state of emergency on Thursday, the governor says she has extended the declaration.

Michigan's House of Representatives on Thursday refused to extend the state of emergency, which expires at midnight, but hours later the governor says she has now extended it by 28 days.

The emergency declaration is separate from the stay-home order, which is still set to expire May 15. But, the emergency declaration is what allows for the governor to issue mandates like the stay-home order. The legislature voted Thursday to replace the emergency and the executive orders with similar legislation.

The governor says under a 1945 law she does not need the legislature's approval to extend the current emergency.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed off on three executive orders on April 30:

  • An order terminating the current state of emergency and disaster declaration 
  • An order that clarifies the state of emergency remains in effect through May 28, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. under the Emergency Powers of the Governor Act of 1945
  • An order that declares the state of emergency and a state of disaster across the state through May 28, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. under the Emergency Management Act of 1976

RELATED: Protest against Whitmer's request to extend state of emergency held at capitol Thursday

“While some members of the legislature might believe this crisis is over, common sense and all of the scientific data tells us we’re not out of the woods yet," Whitmer said in a statement about the declaration. "By refusing to extend the emergency and disaster declaration, Republican lawmakers are putting their heads in the sand and putting more lives and livelihoods at risk. I’m not going to let that happen.”

RELATED: House doesn't extend virus emergency, moves to sue Whitmer

The governor said she will evaluate the need for the emergency and disaster declaration prior to their expiration dates, and if she decides it's no longer necessary— she will terminate it. 

Senate Bill 858 passed in the Michigan House on Thursday afternoon, which would have replaced the emergency orders with similar legislation. 

Speaker of the House Lee Chatfield said by putting the current executive orders into legislation allows for future revisions and extensions to, "be worked out in a better public, bipartisan process."

The governor's office said the bill "does not comply with constitutional requirements." The governor has said she will veto this bill and any other that puts a strain on her ability to protect residents. 

View the executive orders below:

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