Texas Senate Passes Bill to Limit Governor's Power to Shut Down State During Emergency

The bill would require the governor to call a special session in order to declare a state emergency that lasts more than 30 days

Picture of Texas Governor Greg Abbott
NBC 5 News

The Texas Senate has passed a bill that limits the governor's power during a statewide disaster.

The move comes after Texas Governor Greg Abbott managed the COVID-19 pandemic last year without other lawmakers.

This new legislation would require Abbott or any future governor to call a special session to extend a major disaster declaration that lasts more than 30 days.

The special session would allow lawmakers to terminate or adjust the actions taken by the governor or pass new laws related to the emergency.

The bill would require legislative approval to close businesses, like Abbott did at the beginning of the pandemic.

Texas voters would have to approve the amendment on Nov. 2 for it to take effect.

Before it the bill can get on a ballot, the Senate action must still be approved by the House.

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