The doctrine of preemption expresses the idea that “a higher authority of law will displace a lower authority of law when the two authorities come into conflict.” Preemption exists on both the federal and state level. According to the Georgia Constitution, local laws are permissible if they do not conflict with the state law on the subject. During a Public Health State of Emergency, the Governor of Georgia maintains certain expanded powers to take necessary action for the health and safety of the public. On April 2, 2020, Governor Brian Kemp (R) used these expanded powers to enact an Executive Order that preempted local Georgia Orders related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Marisa P. Ahlzadeh & Fanny Chac,
PREEMPTION: Executive Order by the Governor to Ensure a Safe & Healthy Georgia,
Ga. St. U. L. Rev.
Available at: https://readingroom.law.gsu.edu/gsulr/vol37/iss1/11