State judge rules that Gov. Kate Brown’s coronavirus orders are invalid

Gov. Kate Brown listens in during a phone call with Vice President Mike Pence and other governors on Monday, April 20. (Amanda Loman/Salem Reporter)

A state judge in Baker County ruled Monday that Gov. Kate Brown's restrictive orders related to the pandemic were void because they exceeded a state time limit. He issued a preliminary injunction sought by churches against the order that limited services.

While the ruling is a victory for opponents of the governor's mandates, which have closed businesses, churches and large gatherings, Brown declared her intention to immediately appeal the decision to the state Supreme Court and seek an order keeping her restrictions in place.

Baker Circuit Court Judge Matthew Shirtcliff said that Brown's executive orders cited as the legal basis a state law that "gives the governor power over . . .