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State Orders and Directives

Photo of Gov. Whitmer signing an executive order.
Office of the Governor

State Orders and Directives

What is an Executive Order?

The Michigan Constitution of 1963 vests the executive power of the state in the Governor. That power can be exercised formally by executive order. Executive orders may reorganize agencies within the executive branch of state government, reassign functions among executive branch agencies, create temporary agencies, establish an advisory body, commission, or task force, proclaim or end an emergency, or reduce expenditures authorized by appropriations. Once signed by the Governor, executive orders are filed with the Secretary of State, where the orders are sealed and retained by the Office of the Great Seal.

What is an Executive Directive?

Similar to executive orders, executive directives are issued by the Governor to establish basic internal policy or procedure for the executive branch of state government, assure the faithful execution of law, and to supervise state departments. Executive directives often establish guidelines, rules of conduct, or rules of procedures for state departments and their employees. Executive directives are signed by the Governor and distributed to state departments and agencies, but not filed with the Secretary of State.

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