Indiana lawmakers voted Monday to override Governor Eric Holcomb’s veto of Senate Bill 5, making it more difficult for local health officials to issue stricter emergency health orders than the state.
Senate Bill 5 ends local COVID-19 restrictions from local health officials more stringent than the ones ordered by the state. For local restrictions to be reinstated, they will need approval from the local city councils, mayors or county legislative bodies, according to an IndyStar article.
The bill also lets local businesses appeal shutdown orders in response to public health emergencies.
The Indiana House voted to override Holcomb’s veto with a 59-30 vote, and the Senate voted to override it by a 36-10 vote Monday. Holcomb vetoed Senate Bill 5 on May 4. The bill passed the Indiana Senate on Feb. 8 and the Indiana House of Representatives on April 6.
Indiana’s mask mandate ended April 6, but Holcomb said March 23 that local communities may issue stricter restrictions if they chose to.
Monroe County Health Department Administrator Penny Caudill said April 9 that the mask mandate and physical distancing requirements would remain until May 28. Because these restrictions were approved by the Monroe County commissioners in a prior meeting, they will stay in place, Caudill said in an email Tuesday.
The Monroe County Board of Health is scheduled to meet next Tuesday to discuss any changes to COVID-19 restrictions in Monroe County, Caudill said.