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Executive Orders

Governors as well as presidents can issue executive orders which are official directives mandating certain governmental actions. Executive orders are written documents filed with the secretary of state and have the force of law; however, their scope is limited to the following policy areas:

  1. To reorganize or control bureaucracy
  2. To call out the National Guard to respond to emergencies or crises
  3. To set up commissions to study particular issues or policy problems
  4. To respond to federal rules, regulations, or initiatives.

The powers of governors to make executive orders varies according to whether they are authorized by statute, constitution, or tradition; by the areas of policy in which a governor is authorized to make such orders; and whether those orders can be reviewed by the Legislature or subject to any other restrictions.

Executive orders as a governor’s privilege are not specifically defined in Nevada Statutes except as related to the National Crime Prevention and Privacy Compact, NRS 179A.800.

Nevada governors have generally issued orders consistent with the four policy areas listed above and which were not in conflict with the rights and powers of the Legislature to make laws.

Executive orders are required to be filed with the Nevada Secretary of State; the filed copy is considered the original.  In addition, governors retain a copy with their gubernatorial records.

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