Constitutional Amendment to Regulate Emergency Powers
Representative Kidwell has drafted Legislation that if passed by the General Assembly will put a Constitutional Amendment on the ballot in November. The Amendment seeks to make sure that the Representatives of the people have a voice in when and how emergency powers are enacted. Currently, the Governor can and has declared a State of Emergency for the entire state of North Carolina. While we do face the threat of COVID-19 Representative Kidwell believes that the Governor should not unilaterally be permitted to declare a long-lasting statewide state of emergency without the voice of the people being heard. With the proposed amendment the Governor may declare a statewide state of emergency only if he gets the majority of the seven members of the Council of States agreement. It would also automatically call the General Assembly into session. As it stands now the General Assembly was not allowed to take any action since they were adjourned until April 28th. This amendment would have the General Assembly recalled back into session within 15 days of a statewide declaration at which time they would either vote to sustain the declaration or to rescind it. If they fail to vote it would automatically expire on the eighth day after returning to session. It would also stop the NC government from closing churches by only allowing a request to be made to reduce the number of people per service to help with the reduction of communicable diseases.