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State Rep. Frank Ryan (R-101) joined other Republican lawmakers Monday announcing plans to lift an emergency declaration used by Gov. Tom Wolf to impose draconian restrictions that have harmed the long-term health of our citizens, businesses and communities.
“The governor’s response to the COVID-19 crisis has damaged unnecessarily Pennsylvania’s economy — in some cases irreparably,” said Rep. Ryan, who is seeking reelection in the Nov. 3 general election. “I continue to believe that people and businesses can manage the risk of the disease and make livings at the same time.”
The legislators will seek House and Senate majorities to approve a suspension of a 1978 law that authorizes the emergency declaration. A previous legislative attempt to end the emergency was thwarted by the state Supreme Court, which allowed the governor to veto the legislation.
The action announced Monday is based in part on a provision of the Pennsylvania constitution which “grants all power of suspending laws solely to the legislative branch. It does not allow or provide for judicial or executive branch interference in the suspension of laws.”
“Our efforts are designed to reign in a deeply flawed law in order to create a more workable process for managing emergencies. The House and Senate already have started an initiative to amend the constitution to accomplish this,” said Rep. Ryan.
“The 1978 law was passed more than 40 years ago by an outgoing legislature and governor immediately prior to new state leadership assuming office. All in all, it was ill-considered legislation that ended up assigning excessive power to the executive branch,” said Rep. Ryan.
“Now is the time for our citizens to be recognized as the reason for government and not the other way around. Our government must be a government by the ‘consent of the governed.’”
The 101st district includes the city of Lebanon; the boroughs of Cornwall, Mount Gretna and Palmyra; and the townships of North Cornwall, West Cornwall, North Londonderry, South Londonderry and South Annville.