House lawmaker among officials, businesses in Pa. filing suit over state’s coronavirus shutdown
Rep. Mike Kelly (R-Pa.) is part of a group of Pennsylvania state lawmakers and businesses that are suing Gov. Tom Wolf (D), demanding that the state’s stay-at-home order be lifted amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Wolf’s order has already faced a number of challenges.
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court previously ruled in favor of Wolf and on Wednesday the Supreme Court threw out a similar suit against Wolf.
The complaint Kelly is a part of consists of three additional state lawmakers, a group of local business owners and four counties in southwestern Pennsylvania, a western Pennsylvania newspaper reported.
David Russo, the district attorney for Greene County — one of the suing counties — said that he wouldn’t prosecute any businesses that decide to reopen despite Wolf’s stay-at-home order.
“I cannot in good conscience stand by and watch our economy and the small businesses in my community perish,” Russo told the paper. “If large conglomerate shopping centers, gas stations and businesses deemed essential such as beer distributors can safely operate with thousands of customers entering their stores each day, then there is no reason the small business owner should not be allowed to operate under the same guidelines.”
In Greene County, which sits on the state’s border to West Virginia, 27 people have tested positive for COVID-19.
As of Friday, the state had confirmed more than 50,000 cases of the coronavirus with a reported 3,416 deaths, according to the state health system.