Gov. Laura Kelly signs bill extending emergency disaster declaration

Executive orders to be revoked on March 31 will be reissued on April 1
Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly answers questions about the COVID-19 pandemic during a news conference,...
Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly answers questions about the COVID-19 pandemic during a news conference, Wednesday, March 3, 2021, at the Statehouse in Topeka, Kan. The Republican-controlled Legislature is considering changes in the state's emergency laws and limits on the governor's power during pandemics and other emergencies. (AP Photo/John Hanna)(John Hanna | AP)
Published: Mar. 24, 2021 at 4:54 PM CDT
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TOPEKA, Kan. (KWCH) – Governor Laura Kelly signed a bill Wednesday to ensure Kansas can continue providing communities with resources and support critical to the state’s COVID-19 response and recovery efforts.

Senate Bill 40 modifies the procedure for the declaration and extension of a state disaster emergency under the Kansas Emergency Management Act, and extends the current disaster declaration to May 28, 2021.

“This bipartisan compromise will extend the State of Disaster Emergency that allows us to provide hospitals with PPE, support food banks and pantries, and otherwise respond to the COVID-19 pandemic,” Governor Kelly said. “The bill includes provisions that I do not support and that could complicate our emergency response efforts. But I will continue to work with legislators and local leaders to keep Kansans safe and healthy during this pandemic.”

Several executive orders related to the COVID-19 pandemic were set to expire on March 31 in conjunction with the expiration of the state of disaster emergency. Senate Bill 40 includes a provision that revokes all current executive orders related to the COVID-19 pandemic. It also strips appointed local health officers of their power to impose restrictions and leaves the decisions to elected county commissions.

The governor’s office said she will re-issue her orders under the new process imposed by the bill. Once issued, the following orders will remain in effect until rescinded or until the statewide state of disaster emergency expires, whichever is earlier:

The following orders will not be re-issued and therefore allowed to expire:

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