SALEM, Ore. (AP) — A county judge has declared Oregon Gov. Kate Brown's coronavirus restrictions "null and void" because she didn't have her emergency orders approved by the Legislature following 28 days.
Baker County Circuit Judge Matthew Shirtcliff made the ruling Monday in a lawsuit brought by churches who had sued saying the social-distancing directives were unconstitutional.
The suit had also argued that emergency powers only last for a month and after that Brown would have needed legislative approval. The judge agreed.
Ray Hacke, the attorney who represented the plaintiffs in the case, said in a phone interview Monday the ruling invalidates Brown's ban on churches gathering for worship but also invalidates the entire stay-at-home order, Hacke said.
Common Sense intervened after the Sacramento-based Pacific Justice Institute filed the case earlier this month on behalf of Oregon businesses, expanding the scope, he said.
"The stay-at-home order is no longer in effect. It is invalidated. If people want to get their haircut, they can. They can leave their home for any reason whether it's deemed essential in the eye of the state or not," he said.