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Library of Congress – Federal and State Executive Responses to COVID-19

United States: Federal and State Executive Responses to COVID-19. Anna Price, Legal Reference Specialist; Louis Myers, Librarian-in-Residence. September 2020. “The executive branches of federal and state governments in the United States have authority to enact rules and regulations designed to implement, enforce, and carry out laws passed by Congress. The executive branch generally relies on government agencies to perform these actions. Typically, the process is lengthy, including time for public comment and congressional oversight. Under certain circumstances, however, exceptions can apply to the process, allowing agencies to act immediately, lawfully bypassing normally longer regulatory procedures.Although emergency rulemaking has been used in response to previous emergent situations, the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in emergency rulemaking affecting every jurisdiction in the United States. The functional effects of emergency rulemaking are wide-ranging and can be contentious. The nature of emergency rulemaking creates difficulties for oversight at both the federal and state level. The rules and regulations enacted under the emergency framework will shape current and future generations as the United States begins to recover from COVID-19’s economic and societal impacts…”

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