Senator Michelle Ugenti-Rita (R-LD23) has introduced a resolution that will bring an immediate end to the March 11th, 2020 "State of Emergency" declared by Governor Doug Ducey (R).
Arizona has endured 12 months of being ruled by a single executive with no legislative oversight of his whims. Campaign for Liberty of Arizona supports Ugenti-Rita's resolution and urges all members in the Senate Appropriations Committee, where it is assigned, and the Senate as a whole to vote YES and resume business as usual, along with a balanced approach to handling the outbreak.
Text of the resolution:
SCR 1001- A CONCURRENT RESOLUTION
Terminating the declaration of emergency issued on March 11, 2020 due to the COVID‑19 outbreak.
Whereas, Douglas A. Ducey, Governor of the State of Arizona, issued a Declaration of Emergency related to COVID-19 on March 11, 2020; and
Whereas, under expanded authority exclusively allowable under a Declaration of Emergency, Governor Ducey subsequently issued Executive Order 2020-18 on March 30, 2020 and Executive Order 2020-33 on April 29, 2020, which implemented stay-at-home orders that have drastically restricted and suppressed the individual freedoms and economic prosperity of Arizonans; and
Whereas, under this expanded authority, Governor Ducey has subjected individual citizens to criminal sanctions for noncompliance with the stay‑at-home orders; and
Whereas, pursuant to Constitution of Arizona, article II, sections 1 and 2, our state government was established to protect and maintain individual rights and must frequently return to these principles to secure these rights and the perpetuity of our free government; and
Whereas, in a memorandum dated April 27, 2020 to the United States Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights and all United States Attorneys, United States Attorney General William Barr stated that "f a state or local ordinance crosses the line from an appropriate exercise of authority to stop the spread of COVID-19 into an overbearing infringement of constitutional and statutory protections, the Department of Justice may have an obligation to address that overreach in federal court"; and
Whereas, the Arizona department of economic security has received over 5,200,000 initial claims for unemployment insurance and has delivered more than $12 billion in benefits since March 28, 2020; and
Whereas, depletion of this state's account in the unemployment trust fund that is established and maintained pursuant to section 904 of the social security act will increase future payroll taxation on Arizona businesses; and
Whereas, according to the University of Arizona Second Quarter 2020 Economic Forecast Update, government- and self-imposed social distancing measures that drive job reductions of 10.2 to 23.4%, combined with reduced taxable sales, income, wealth, housing activity, population growth and net migration, will elevate the magnitude of the coming projected economic downturn to be 50% greater than the 2008-2009 recession; and
Whereas, municipal economic development authorities estimate that 20 to 25% of their small businesses will not return after Arizona's economic shutdown; and
Whereas, pursuant to Constitution of Arizona, article II, section 13, "o law shall be enacted granting to any citizen, class of citizens, or corporation other than municipal, privileges or immunities which, upon the same terms, shall not equally belong to all citizens or corporations"; and
Whereas, under Executive Orders 2020-18 and 2020-33, Governor Ducey has allowed certain types of businesses to operate while restricting others, forcing compliance through significant fines and license revocations; and
Whereas, pursuant to section 26-301, paragraph 15 and section 26‑303, subsection D, Arizona Revised Statutes, the governor may proclaim a state of emergency only for conditions of disaster or of extreme peril to the safety of persons due to an epidemic that are or are likely to be beyond the control of available services, personnel, equipment and facilities; and
Whereas, throughout the duration of the stay-at-home orders implemented by Executive Orders 2020-18 and 2020-33, Arizona hospitals have consistently had more than 1,100 available ventilators and have maintained an available bed capacity of over 3,800 total intensive care unit, emergency department and inpatient beds; and
Whereas, prolonged isolation is detrimental to public health and mental well-being, leading to increases in child abuse, domestic violence, depression, substance abuse and other lingering societal costs requiring difficult and lengthy paths to recovery; and
Whereas, pursuant to section 36-788, subsection A, Arizona Revised Statutes, isolation or quarantine during a state of emergency is allowable only if it "is the least restrictive means by which the public can be protected from transmission of the disease, due to the nature of the disease and available preventive measures, or refusal by an individual to accept less restrictive measures to prevent disease transmission"; and
Whereas, Arizonans are personally responsible and have exceeded expectations in slowing community spread through their own individual behaviors and actions, accepting personal restrictions as a civic duty to prevent disease transmission.
Be it resolved by the Senate of the State of Arizona, the House of Representatives concurring:
1. That pursuant to section 26‑303, subsection F, Arizona Revised Statutes, the Legislature declares that the Declaration of Emergency issued by the Governor on March 11, 2020 due to the COVID‑19 outbreak is at an end and is terminated.
2. That the Secretary of State transmit a copy of this concurrent resolution to the Governor of the State of Arizona.