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Senate passes legislation to trim Idaho governor's powers

The Senate voted 27-7 on Friday to approve the measure that targets emergency powers during human-made events, such as a terrorist attack.
Credit: AP
FILE - In this Friday, Jan. 15, 2021, file photo, the Idaho Senate gathers in the Statehouse in Boise, Idaho. Two former Republican speakers of the Idaho House of Representatives say attempts by the Republican-dominated House and Senate to strip Republican Gov. Brad Little and future governors of emergency powers endanger Idaho residents. (AP Photo/Keith Ridler, File)

BOISE, Idaho — The first significant piece of legislation aimed at trimming an Idaho governor's powers during declared emergencies while increasing the Legislature's power has cleared the Senate and is headed to the House. 

The Senate voted 27-7 on Friday to approve the measure that targets emergency powers during human-made events, such as a terrorist attack.

A companion House bill targets a governor's authority during natural disasters. 

Lawmakers say the coronavirus pandemic showed that the state's current system is a relic from the Cold War that concentrates too much power in the executive branch.

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