LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Nevada Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak signed a formal proclamation Thursday, ending the state’s COVID-19 state of emergency effective Friday.

The emergency declaration, in place since March 2020, allowed the state to move resources during the pandemic.

“Today, we are turning the page on the State of Emergency caused by COVID-19 and are laser focused on ensuring our recovery from the public health, fiscal and economy crisis serves the needs of Nevada’s families,” the governor said in a statement. “I am proud of the way we came together as the Battle Born State to respond to this virus and to protect lives and livelihoods. COVID-19 is still with us, and we can all still take steps to protect ourselves from the virus, but now is the time to end this State of Emergency.”

In this June 24, 2021, photo, crowds walk through the casino during the opening night of Resorts World Las Vegas in Las Vegas. Las Vegas fully reopened and lifted restrictions on most businesses June 1, though many casino-resorts had already returned to 100% capacity before that with approval from state regulators. (AP Photo/John Locher)

Republicans have criticized Sisolak’s emergency orders as an abuse of power — a characterization reflected by the view that it was Sisolak, not COVID-19, that shut down Nevada’s economy.

Several Republican legislators had attempted to reign in the governor’s powers during the Legislative Session last year. Governors across all states have issued orders related to curbing the spread of the pandemic, which is within their state constitutional rights.

Sisolak used emergency orders to assign authority for mask mandates during the pandemic.

In this April 29, 2021, file photo, Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak speaks during a news conference in Las Vegas. Gov. Sisolak applauded Nevada lawmakers for passing hundreds of bills in a legislative session colored heavily by the coronavirus pandemic. In an interview with reporters Tuesday, June 1, 2021, Sisolak said he felt optimistic about the state’s future. (AP Photo/John Locher, File)

Following White House and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, Sisolak closed much of Nevada’s casino economy in March 2020. All strict restrictions were dropped earlier this year.

COVID-19 cases continue to climb in Clark County, rising by more than 37% over the past week according to data released Wednesday.

“The declaration and subsequent directives ensured the State of Nevada could effectively prevent infections, reduce the impacts on patient care in our healthcare system and reduce the number of Nevadans that died from the disease caused by the virus,” a handout from the governor’s office said.

Nearly 11,000 Nevadans have died from COVID-19.