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Washtenaw County Officials Trying To Determine If They Can Legally Continue To Meet Remotely

Oct 7, 2020

The Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners has cancelled its regularly scheduled meeting Wednesday night as they determine if they can legally continue to hold virtual meetings during COVID-19.  

The board made the decision after the Michigan Supreme Court ruled that Governor Gretchen Whitmer lacks the authority in declaring emergency orders during COVID-19 without the approval from the Legislature.  Washtenaw County Board Chair Jason Morgan says the board has been able to meet remotely because the governor issued an order that amended the Open Meetings Act that allowed them to do so. 

Board Chair Jason Morgan: It’s my understanding that the state legislature will consider some legislation to allow local governments to meet virtually during this time.  But they need more time to be able to do that.

Morgan says the issues that were scheduled to be discussed Wednesday night are not time sensitive and will be addressed at their next regularly scheduled meeting on October 21st.  As of now, the board does not feel comfortable hosting in-person meetings.

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— Jorge Avellan is a reporter for 89.1 WEMU News. Contact him at 734.487.3363 or email him javellan@emich.edu