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Ohio News

DeWine Sees 'Pathway' To Legislative Involvement In Health Orders

Gov. Mike DeWine (R-Ohio) at the vaccination clinic inside Xavier University Cintas Center
Gov. Mike DeWine (R-Ohio) at the vaccination clinic inside Xavier University Cintas Center

Gov. Mike DeWine (R-Ohio) says he's going to veto a bill that would weaken his authority to issue states of emergency and health orders, but he says a deeper discussion can be had about including more public input into the order-making process.

Opponents of last year's Stay-at-Home order and the current mask mandate say a bill, SB22, that allows the Ohio House and Ohio Senate to terminate such orders gives them a voice into the process, through legislative representation.

DeWine says SB22 goes too far in weakening the governor's ability to respond to crisis, but says he's open to look further into the issue of representation.

"There could be another bill that we could agree on where the legislature would be able to feel that you had significant input, that there would be protection in there that would guarantee that," says DeWine.

The bill would require a state of emergency to expire after 90 days. It gives the Legislature the ability to terminate a state of emergency after 30 days and lawmakers could rescind an order under that state of emergency at any time.

Supporters of the bill say it gives citizens, such as small business owners, a chance to reach out to their state lawmakers and provide input into the state of emergency and subsequent orders.

DeWine notes that his administration created working groups that represented different industries to help make guidelines upon reopening those sectors, such as restaurants, barbershops and salons, and retail.

House and Senate leaders say they have enough votes to override a veto. However, DeWine says he believes more legislators are rethinking the provisions added to the bill and the unintended consequences that could hamper a response to a public health crisis.

Copyright 2021 The Statehouse News Bureau