Lauwers backs continuing critical COVID-19 protections, defending the people’s voice in emergency actions

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Dan Lauwers on Thursday voted to continue many noninvasive COVID-19 protections and defend the Legislature’s role in states of emergency.

“Today we took actions acknowledging the current health crisis in much of our state, while also requiring the governor to work in concert with the Legislature in finding sensible solutions to get us back to work safely,” said Lauwers, R-Brockway Township. “Michigan’s government is one of checks and balances, and the Legislature is the voice of the people and the branch most responsive to the residents. We must have a seat at the table to ensure the concerns of our constituents are considered as part of the decision-making process.”

The Senate sent the governor legislation to put several COVID-19 executive orders into law and extend those that need to continue to help extend efforts to fight the virus and deal with its impacts.

Among the 28 orders included in Senate Bill 858 are those regarding expanded unemployment benefits (EO 2020-57), distance learning for schools (EO 2020-35), and liability protections for health care workers treating patients in innovative ways (EO 2020-39).

The bill does not include or extend the state of emergency declaration or the governor’s stay-at-home order (EO 2020-59).

The Senate also approved Senate Resolution 114 to allow the body to challenge in court any executive actions taken by the governor after the Legislature’s state of emergency extension expires on May 1.