The general assembly, in order to insure continuity of state and local governmental
operations, including the judicial functions, in periods of emergency resulting from
disasters caused by enemy attack, shall have the power and the immediate duty to provide
for prompt and temporary succession to the powers and duties of public offices, of
whatever nature and whether filled by election or appointment, the incumbents of which
may become unavailable for carrying on the powers and duties of such offices, to enact
legislation permitting the convening of the general assembly at any place within or
without the State of Rhode Island, and to adopt such other measures as may be necessary
and proper for insuring the continuity of governmental operations during the period
of said emergency. Any law enacted under this section shall apply to all cities and towns regardless
of their form of charter. During said period of emergency the general assembly shall have the power to incur
state debts exceeding the limitation set forth in Sections 16 and 17 of this article. The powers granted and the laws enacted under this section shall not be effective
after two years following the inception of an enemy attack.
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