Arkansas EO_20-03 Governor's Proclamation
State of Arkansas
TO ALL TO WHOM THESE PRESENTS COME - GREETINGS: EO 20-03
EXECUTIVE ORDER TO DECLARE AN EMERGENCY, AS AUTHORIZED BY ARK. CODE ANN. §12-75-114, AND ORDER THE ARKANSAS DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH TO TAKE ACTION TO PREVENT THE SPREAD OF COVID-19, AS AUTHORIZED BY ARK. CODE ANN. §20-7-110.
WHEREAS: An outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has spread throughout China and to 59 other countries and territories, including the United States;
WHEREAS: COVID-19 has been detected within the State of Arkansas and adjoining states, threatening the public safety of the citizens of Arkansas;
WHEREAS: COVID-19 is a new disease and there is more to learn about how it spreads, the severity of illness it causes, and to what extent it may spread;
WHEREAS: The virus is thought to spread mainly from person to person between people who are in close contact with one another, through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes: therefore, isolation and quarantine can be necessary and effective public health measures to control the spread of the COVID-19 virus;
WHEREAS: The Secretary of Health may issue orders of isolation and/or quarantine as necessary and appropriate to control this disease in the State of Arkansas, and the Secretary of Health, in consultation with the Governor, shall have sole authority over all instances of quarantine, isolation, and restrictions on commerce and travel throughout the state;
WHEREAS: It is essential that our schools and educational institutions remain operational in the most practicable manner possible without jeopardizing public safety;
WHEREAS: All necessary measures should be implemented to ensure that essential state services remain available to those who depend on them;
WHEREAS: All necessary measures should be implemented to ensure that citizens maintain access to essential goods and commodities, including, but not limited to, groceries, pharmacy items, household consumables, and fuel; and
WHEREAS: Spread of COVID-19 is likely to impact drivers of commercial vehicles transporting essential items of commerce during this emergency, including but not limited to, groceries, pharmacy items, medical equipment, goods, commodities, fuel, poultry, and livestock. 49 C.F.R. Section 390.23 authorizes a state governor to declare a regional emergency during the duration of the emergency conditions, not to exceed thirty (30) days from the date of the initial declaration of emergency, and to exempt any motor carrier or driver operating a commercial motor vehicle to provide direct assistance in providing emergency relief during an emergency from Parts 390 through 399 of Chapter 49, Code of Federal Regulations.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Asa Hutchinson, Governor of the State of Arkansas, acting under the authority vested in me by Ark. Code Ann.§§ 12-75-101, et seq., and§ 20-7-110, after consultation with the Secretary of Health, do hereby declare that an emergency exists and order the following:
(1) The Arkansas Department of Health shall act as the lead agency to work in concert with the Arkansas Division of Emergency Management and other State agencies to utilize state resources and to do everything reasonably possible to respond to and recover from the COVID-19 virus;
(2) No quarantine regulations of commerce or travel shall be instituted or operated by any place, city, town or county against another place, city, town, or county in this or in any other state except by authority of the Secretary of Health;
(3) The Arkansas Department of Education, in consultation with the Arkansas Department of Health, shall provide guidance to local school districts and institutions of higher education to address concerns related to COVID-19 and take all measures necessary to ensure the continuation of education in the State during this emergency. The Secretary of Health, in consultation -with the Secretary of Education, shall have sole authority to close public school campuses throughout the state for reasons related to COVID-19;
(4) All Department Secretaries shall work with the Arkansas Department of Health and Arkansas Division of Emergency Management to ensure that essential state services remain available to those who depend on them;
(5) Provisions of regulating statutes prescribing procedures for conduct of the State Office of Procurement, the Arkansas Building Authority, the State Office of Personnel Management, and all other State departments and agencies are superseded to render maximum assistance to the Arkansas Department of Health and the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management relative to any potential impediment to the rapid and orderly rendering of assistance during this emergency; and
(6) A state of emergency exists, and a regional emergency is declared pursuant to 49 C.F.R. Section 390.23, as applied to commercial vehicles transporting essential items of commerce during this emergency, including but not limited to, groceries, pharmacy items, medical equipment, goods, commodities, fuel, poultry, and livestock.
IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Great Seal of the State of Arkansas to be affixed this 11 th day of March, in the year of our Lord 2020.
Asa Hutchinson, Governor
John Thurston, Secretary of State