COVID-19 Information and Resources as of 4/15/21

4/15/21 – VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 5,548,444 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 76,119 administered on April 13Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

ICYMI 

  • On Wednesday, Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun provided an update on COVID-19 cases, vaccines and variants and discussed the state’s efforts to expand the use of monoclonal antibody therapy to help those diagnosed with COVID-19 avoid hospitalization.
  • On Wednesday, Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services announced today the state is working to expand the use of a medical intervention designed to significantly reduce hospitalizations and deaths due to COVID-19. This involves additional doses of monoclonal antibodies being made available to providers and requests to providers to expand the number of infusion sites in the state. 

“We are using every mitigation strategy, every medication, and every treatment option to fight the virus here in Michigan,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “These antibody treatments could keep you out of the hospital and save your life, and my administration and I will continue working with the federal government to make sure we are using all the tools in our toolbox to keep you and your family safe and get back to normal sooner.” 

  • MDHHS announced 7,955 cases of COVID-19 yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 764,519.

 https://www.michigan.gov/coronavirus 

 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

 

Vaccine Information at:

Michigan.gov/COVIDVaccine

COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard: Vaccination data will be updated Monday – Saturday from the Michigan Care Improvement Registry (MCIR).

COVID-19 Vaccine Prioritization Guidance: This guidance outlines the strategy for vaccine prioritization for the State of Michigan and will be used by MDHHS, as well as public health and health care, as they allocate and administer vaccines.

COVID-19 Vaccine FAQs: Frequently asked questions about the COVID-19 vaccines. The information in this document will change frequently as we learn more about COVID-19 vaccines.

Past Posts of Information, Executive Orders, and News Bulletins (most recent on top):

4/14/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services announced today the state is working to expand the use of a medical intervention designed to significantly reduce hospitalizations and deaths due to COVID-19. This involves additional doses of monoclonal antibodies being made available to providers and requests to providers to expand the number of infusion sites in the state. 

Monoclonal antibodies (mAbare laboratory-produced molecules that can restore, enhance or mimic the immune system’s attack on cells. mAb targets different parts of the virus and prevents it from bonding with cells in the body, effectively neutralizing it. Clinical trials have shown promising data that this therapy works for the treatment of COVID-19 in patients who are at high risk for progressing to severe symptoms and/or hospitalization, including older Michiganders. To date, preliminary data suggests more than 6,600 Michiganders have received this treatment with 65% reporting feeling better with two days of treatment and less than 5% of them requiring hospitalization following treatment. 

The therapy has been used successfully to help address COVID-19 outbreaks in long-term care facilities in the state and to treat patients at home. This has included a 33-patient nursing home in Wayland in January, a senior care facility in Cass County in December and a veteran’s home in Grand Rapids in December. In seven long-term care facility outbreaks, 120 vulnerable patients with high mortality rates were treated with mAb. Only three of those patients needed to be hospitalized with one death. 

Michigan was also one of the first states in the nation to issue an EMS protocol to allow paramedics to administer this medication to further increase access. In St. Clair County, Tri-Hospital EMS treated 50 patients at home over a nine-day period. The state is also using EMS to provide paratransit or ambulance transport to infusion clinics for patients who don’t have access to transportation.  

The therapy is administered through an intravenous infusion and is designed for people who have tested positive for COVID-19 and have mild to moderate symptoms. It is not intended for hospitalized patients. These treatments are allowed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) under an Emergency Use AuthorizationAccording to the FDA, mAb therapy is effective against the B.1.1.7 (UK) variant, the predominant form of COVID currently seen in Michigan. 

The National Institutes of Health recently recommended that patients with mild to moderate COVID-19 who are at high risk of worsening disease should be treated with combination therapy –– either Lilly or Regeneron. 

Michigan continues to monitor and track patients within 14 days of COVID-19 antibody treatment administration to assess the impact of COVID-19 antibody treatments on the state’s COVID-19 hospitalization rate. Additionally, the state is now conducting follow-up phone interviews conducted by volunteer medical and pharmacy students to more effectively assess patient response to mAb. 

4/14/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun provided an update on COVID-19 casesvaccines and variants and discussed the state’s efforts to expand the use of monoclonal antibody therapy to help those diagnosed with COVID-19 avoid hospitalization 

The Governor praised progress on vaccinations and urged Michiganders to keep doing their part by wearing masks, washing their hands, social distancing, and getting vaccinated. The Governor stressed there are still public health laws in place to mitigate the spread of COVID including a mask mandate, capacity limits on indoor gatherings, and mandatory testing for sports. The Governor also shared information about the use of Regeneron and Eli Lilly monoclonal antibody treatments. These treatments have been authorized for emergency use by the FDA and can be effective in preventing hospitalizations and deaths for those diagnosed with COVID-19. The state is ensuring providers across the state have the supplies they need to effectively treat Michiganders. 

To view the PowerPoint presentation that the governor used during today’s press conference, click the link:   4.14.2021 COVID PPT.pdf

4/14/21 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun will provide an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus on Wednesday, April 14 at 3:00PM 

LIVE STREAM FOR PUBLIC VIEWING:  

Youtube.com/GovGretchenWhitmer  

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4/14/21 – VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 5,445,335 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 55,020 being administered April 12thEvery COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

ICYMI 

  • MDHHS announced 8,867 cases of COVID-19 from yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 756,564.

https://www.michigan.gov/coronavirus 

 HAPPENING ACROSS STATE GOVERNMENT 

  • The three Detroit casinos reported $113.84 million in monthly aggregate revenue during March while continuing to operate at limited capacity due to COVID-19 health concerns. Table games and slots generated $110.87 million in revenue while retail sports betting produced $2.97 million in revenue.

The state received $112,272 in taxes on retail sports betting revenue from the Detroit casinos. The three casinos also reported submitting $137,221 in retail sports betting taxes to the City of Detroit. 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

4/13/21 – VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 5,370,443 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 189,911 being administered April 9 – Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

  • Today, Governor Whitmer toured the vaccination clinic at Eastern Michigan University (EMU). She was joined by Congresswoman Debbie Dingell, Washtenaw County Health Department Officer Jimena Loveluck, St. Joseph Mercy Hospital Ann Arbors President Alonzo Lewis, and Christian Tabernacle Baptist Church Pastor Larry Davis. 

“In Michigan, we’re working around the clock to expand access to the three safe, effective vaccines, so we can bring down our COVID-19 numbers and save lives,” said Governor Whitmer. “We need more vaccine doses so that we can get back to normal as soon as possible, and the way forward is to continue ramping up our vaccine access and double down on our efforts to mask up, socially distance, and wash our hands. Let’s beat COVID-19 together.”   

ICYMI 

  • On Monday, Governor Whitmer announced her funding priorities as the state readies for more than $18 billion in federal funding available through the American Rescue Plan Act. State government is expected to receive $5.7 billion in additional federal funding, in addition to $4.4 billion directed to local governments and $3.9 billion to K-12 schools. Many Michiganders have already received stimulus checks from the federal government through the Act.

We have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to invest billions in Michigan’s families, communities, schools, and small businesses,“ said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “The American Rescue Plan will help us build back better, preparing our state for the future while creating thousands of jobs and uplifting working families. I look forward to working with the legislature to put these dollars to work in a strategic way that builds on our shared priorities. Let’s get it done.“ 

  • The Healthy Michigan Plan is now providing health care coverage to more than 900,000 residents for the first time,  Gretchen Whitmer announced today. 

There are now 900,100 people enrolled in the Healthy Michigan Plan, the state’s expanded Medicaid program. Gov. Whitmer and (MDHHS) have strongly supported the Healthy Michigan Plan. When she was State Senate Democratic leader, Whitmer helped pass the bipartisan legislation that created the Healthy Michigan Plan, which was enacted in April 2014.  

“The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the health and finances of so many Michigan families underscores the importance of the Healthy Michigan Plan for its 900,000 enrollees,” said Gov. Whitmer. “Providing affordable health care coverage to all Michiganders is critical. I am proud of the Healthy Michigan Plan – one that I helped create during my time as Senate Democratic  Leader by collaborating with a Republican governor and legislature.”

  • MDHHS announced 9,674 cases of COVID-19 from Sunday and Monday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to747,697.  

 https://www.michigan.gov/coronavirus 

 MEDIA COVERAGE 

 

 RESOURCES

4/12/21 – VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 5,132,443 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 102,159 administered on April 8. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

ICYMI 

  • On Friday, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced that Michigan will hit more than five million vaccinations by the end of the day. While vaccine supply has increased dramatically since the Biden Administration took office, the state is currently experiencing a serious spike in COVID-19 cases that is putting pressure on Michigan hospital systems. To slow the spread of the virus and protect more Michiganders, the governor renewed her call for the federal government to surge additional vaccines to Michigan, while also urging high schools to shift to remote learning, encouraging diners to choose outdoor dining or takeout instead of indoor seating, and recommending youth sports suspend in-person activities for the next two weeks. 

Administering more than five million doses of the safe and effective COVID vaccine in under four months is a big deal, but we’ve still got a lot more work to do,” said Governor Whitmer. “Right now our numbers are alarming, and we all have a role to play to get our state moving in the right direction again. That’s why I’m renewing my call on the federal government to surge additional vaccines to our state. And it’s why I’m urging high schools and youth sports to voluntarily suspend in-person activities for the next two weeks. This is a team effort. It’s on all of us to do our part by masking up and getting vaccinated to protect ourselves and our families, so we can get back to normal. Let’s get it done.”

  • MDHHS announced 6,892 cases of COVID-19 on Saturday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 738,023.

https://www.michigan.gov/coronavirus 

 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

 

4/9/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer, and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun provided an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus and ramp up vaccinations efforts. They were joined by Tina Freese Decker, President & CEO of Spectrum Health. 

The governor announced that Michigan has surpassed the five million doses administered and reminded that all Michiganders 16 and older are now eligible to receive the safe, effective COVID-19 vaccine. The governor also gave an update on the current spike in COVID-19 cases and renewed her call for the federal government to provide Michigan additional vaccines, while also urging a high schools to shift to remote learning, encouraging diners to choose outdoor dining or takeout instead of indoor seating, and recommending youth sports suspend in-person activities for the next two weeks. 

To view the PowerPoint presentation that the governor used during today’s press conference, click the link:   4.9.2021 COVID PPT.pdf

4/9/21 –  VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 4,992,781 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, with 85,233 doses administered on April 7. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

ICYMI 

  • MDHHS announced 7,819 cases of COVID-19 from yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 723,297.    

https://www.michigan.gov/coronavirus 

 

HAPPENING ACROSS STATE GOVERNMENT 

  • Since shortly after the first positive COVID-19 test was diagnosed at the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Bureau of Laboratories (BOL) on March 10, 2020, BOL scientists have been busy genome sequencing the virus to identify variants. More than 10,000 samples have been sequenced by BOL staff to date with over 4,200 of those tests completed in 2021.

Our lab is a national leader in genome sequencing and our efforts have allowed us to implement rapid public health responses to slow the spread of outbreaks involving more easily transmitted variants,” said Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive and chief deputy for health. “We will continue to work to identify these variants in Michigan as an important tool in fighting this pandemic back in Michigan.”

  • With all Michiganders eligible to receive one of the three safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) is continuing its efforts to equitability distribute and increase vaccine accessibility. This now includes vaccine allocation to universities and colleges and expanded mobile sites in communities across the state.

The effort to increase university allocations is intended to vaccinate students before they return home for the summer. Nearly 16,000 Johnson & Johnson vaccine doses are being shipped to local health departments associated with participating colleges and universities across the state.  

“Vaccinating this group of the population right now makes a lot of sense as thousands of college and university students near the end of their academic year and are preparing to travel back home, start new jobs, take summer vacations, and interact with their family and friends,” said Northern Michigan University president Fritz Erickson. “We appreciate this initiative by the state to keep college students safe. This effort will protect not only the age group that is now seeing a higher rate of infection than before, but it protects communities and families across the state from spread of the virus due to the mass movement of college students that takes place over the next few weeks.”  

4/9/21 – Today,  Friday, April 9 at 10:00 AM, Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun will provide an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus.   

LIVE STREAM FOR PUBLIC VIEWING:  Youtube.com/GovGretchenWhitmer  

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4/8/21 – VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 4,871,713 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 148, 302 being administered on April 5 – April 6. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

ICYMI 

  • MDHHS announced 8,015 cases of COVID-19 from yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 715,478. 

https://www.michigan.gov/coronavirus 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

 

4/5/21 – Today, all Michiganders age 16 and up are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine.

The safe, effective vaccine is our protection against the virus, will help us end the pandemic and get us back to the things we love.

We’re able to vaccinate more and more Michiganders as the vaccine supply coming into the state increases. We are expanding access to create equitable and efficient distribution of the vaccine, and we have a new goal. Let’s get 100,000 shots in Michigander’s arms every day. We can meet this goal if we encourage our friends and family to sign-up for an appointment.

All residents are encouraged to sign up for the vaccine:

  • Check the website of your local health department or hospital to find out their process or for registration forms (map of local health departments);
  • Check additional vaccination sites, such as local pharmacies like MeijerRiteAidKrogerCVSWalmart (Mid/Central and Northern MI) or Snyder Drugs (U.P. residents);
  • To register for the West Michigan Vaccine Clinic at DeVos Place in Grand Rapids go to West Michigan Vaccine Clinic (spectrumhealth.org).
  • To register for the Regional Community Vaccination Site at Ford Field in Detroit go to https://clinic.meijer.com/register/CL2021 or text EndCOVID to 75049.
  • Residents who don’t have access to the internet or who need assistance navigating the vaccine scheduling process can call the COVID-19 Hotline at 888-535-6136 (press 1) Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

4/5/21 – VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 4,522,415 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 94,249 being administered on April 1. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

  • Weekly snapshot of the progress Michigan is making to vaccinate 70% of eligible Michiganders from Michigan’s COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard and the CDC’s COVID Data Tracker:  
  • On Friday, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced a new community vaccine site at United Wholesale Mortgage Sports Complex Vaccine Site in Pontiac which has the capacity to administer up to 3,000 shots per day and will help get our nation back to normal. 

In Michigan, the vaccine process is getting faster and smoother every day, and this community vaccination site in Oakland County will help us reach our goal of equitably vaccinating 70 percent of Michiganders 16 and up more quickly,” said Governor Whitmer. “Everyone should get the safe, effective vaccine once you are eligible because it is the most effective way to protect you and your loved ones from COVID-19 and help get our state back to normal. By ramping up our vaccine distribution, we can beat COVID-19 together and enjoy the summer celebrations that we all crave.”  

ICYMI 

 

  • MDHHS announced 8,413cases of COVID-19 from April 3. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 692,206

https://www.michigan.gov/coronavirus 

HAPPENING ACROSS STATE GOVERNMENT 

  • Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) are urging Michiganders to get tested for COVID-19 upon returning from Spring Break in an effort to help slow the spread of COVID-19. In efforts to make testing easier for travelers, the state is offering 37 pop-up sites located throughout Michigan as part of the special testing program.     

“Brighter days are ahead with vaccinations being available to all Michiganders as of April 5, however, there are still critical efforts we must take to slow the spread of COVID-19,” said Governor Whitmer. “COVID-19 remains a threat to our families and communities, and we encourage Michiganders to get tested for COVID-19 and are making it easier through these additional testing pop-up sites throughout the state. As always, every Michigander has a personal responsibility to do their part by wearing a mask, washing hands and maintaining social distancing to help us slow the spread of this virus.”  

“Michiganders should get tested one to three days before travel,” said Elizabeth Hertel, MDHHS director. “Do not travel if you test positive. Check travel restrictions before leaving, especially information about the spread of new variants of COVID-19 where you intend on visiting.” 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

4/2/21 – Pop-up Testing Sites Offered for Post-Spring Break COVID Testing

4/2/21 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced a new community vaccine site at United Wholesale Mortgage Sports Complex Vaccine Site in Pontiac which has the capacity to administer up to 3,000 shots per day and will help get our nation back to normal. 

In Michigan, the vaccine process is getting faster and smoother every day, and this community vaccination site in Oakland County will help us reach our goal of equitably vaccinating 70 percent of Michiganders 16 and up more quickly,” said Governor Whitmer. “Everyone should get the safe, effective vaccine once you are eligible because it is the most effective way to protect you and your loved ones from COVID-19 and help get our state back to normalBy ramping up our vaccine distribution, we can beat COVID-19 together and enjoy the summer celebrations that we all crave.”  

To date, Michigan has administered 4,401,510 vaccines, moving the state closer to its goal of equitably vaccinating at least 70% of Michiganders ages 16 and older as soon as possible. As part of these efforts, Michigan is working to administer 100,000 shots per day, partnering with organizations like United Wholesale Mortgage Sports Complex to create more opportunities for Michigan residents to receive a vaccine. 

4/2/21 – Gov. Whitmer Daily COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 4,401,510 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 82,148 being administered on March 31. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

ICYMI 

  • As warmer weather returns and our nation’s agricultural communities gear up for summer events, the leaders of the agricultural departments in six Midwestern states released a video message Thursday encouraging people to get vaccinated for COVID-19 when they are eligible.

The group of leaders joined together to share their appreciation for essential agricultural and food workers, who have never stopped working throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. They shared that the three vaccines available to Americans (Moderna, Pfizer, and Johnson & Johnson) are safe and effective. They also emphasized the importance of continued mask wearing, social distancing, and hand washing to minimize the spread of COVID-19 while vaccination continues. 

  • The National Governors Association (NGA) will collaborate with Michigan and five other states on strategies for equitably meeting the social-emotional needs of students and families during and beyond COVID-19. 

The COVID-19 pandemic has been hard on all Michiganders, especially our young people. As we continue to reopen school buildings and vaccinate more people every day, we need a comprehensive recovery plan to support students’ academic and social emotional needs,” said Gov. Whitmer. “This partnership with the National Governors Association will strengthen our efforts to support each and every young person in a comprehensive recovery.” 

Michigan’s project is centered on informing and implementing recommendations from Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s cross-agency, cross-sector Student Recovery Advisory Council. The Council is identifying strategies for Michigan to ensure students have the tools and resources they need to get back on track.  

  • MDHHS announced 6,036 cases of COVID-19 from yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 678,295.     

https://www.michigan.gov/coronavirus 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

 

3/31/21 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer raised Michigan’s COVID-19 vaccination goal from 50,000 to 100,000 shots per day. The new goal is based on the state’s successful efforts to expand equitable and efficient vaccine administration by partnering with private and public organizations in communities across the state, and is made possible by continuous week-over-week increases in the number of vaccines allocated to the state of Michigan.

For 38 days, the state has met or exceeded its original goal of administering 50,000 vaccinations per day. To date, Michigan has administered 4,207,102 vaccines, moving the state closer to its goal of equitably vaccinating at least 70% of Michiganders ages 16 and older as soon as possible. 

In next week’s shipment, the Biden Administration will increase the state’s direct allocation by 66,020 doses for a total of 620,040 vaccines, a weekly record high for Michigan. This allocation includes 147,800 doses of the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine. In addition to the state’s direct allocation, the governor also applauds the millions of additional doses being sent to federally partnered retail pharmacies across the country, including numerous locations in Michigan. 

3/29/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist today issued the following statements after Michigan surpassed four million doses of the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine:  

This weekend, Michigan surpassed 4 million doses administered of the safe, effective COVID-19 vaccines,” said Governor Whitmer. Our rollout continues to pick up steam and we will not rest until we reach our goal of equitably vaccinating 70% of Michiganders ages 16 and up. Michigan continues to make significant strides – administering four million vaccines in less than four months – as we work to ensure every Michigander has access to the vaccine. In line with President Biden’s goals, all Michiganders 16 and up will be eligible to receive the vaccine starting April 5We will emerge from this pandemic stronger than ever and celebrate Independence Day together with friends and family. We will become the state that beat this damn virus. 

To date, Michigan has administered 4,126,550 vaccines, moving the state closer to its goal of equitably vaccinating at least 70% of Michiganders ages 16 and older as soon as possible. For 34 days the state has passed its goal of administrating 50,000 shots per day. 

“We continue to meet or exceed our goals as more and more Michiganders become eligible to get the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine,” said. Lt. Governor Gilchrist“With every vaccine administered, we get one step closer to eliminating this deadly virus once and for all. I’m asking every Michigander to make a plan to get the vaccine when it is your turn. We can all be part of the solution that saves lives and helps us get back to normal. Soon we will be able to see and hug our friends, families, and loved ones, but for now we must continue taking smart precautions like wearing a mask, social distancing, and washing our hands. 

Both Governor Whitmer and Lt. Governor Gilchrist will get the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine when they become eligible under the next phase of vaccine administration guidelines. 

3/29/21 – Gov. Whitmer Daily COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • As of March 18, the state of Michigan has administered 3,919,796 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 73,370 administered on March 25.Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

  • Weekly snapshot of the progress Michigan is making to vaccinate 70% of eligible Michiganders from Michigan’s COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard and the CDC’s COVID Data Tracker:  

 On Friday, Governor Whitmer toured vaccine facilities in Battle Creek and Benton Harbor to observe ongoing COVID-19 vaccination efforts and ensure that vaccines are being distributed efficiently and equitably.  

Just one year ago, we were all grappling with a novel virus, but now we have three safe, effective vaccines that can protect us and our families, and help us get back to normal,” said Governor Whitmer. “Sites like the YMCA in Battle Creek and the health department in Benton Harbor will help us reach our goal of equitably vaccinating 70 percent of Michiganders who are 16 years or older more quickly. I encourage all Michiganders to get the vaccine once it becomes available to you. Let’s beat COVID-19 together.” 

 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

 

3/24/21 – Gov. Whitmer Daily COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE

• The state of Michigan has administered 3,652,762 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines with 40,775 administered on March 22nd. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.

ICYMI
• MDHHS announced 3,579 cases of COVID-19 from yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 633,191.

3/23/21 – Gov. Whitmer Daily COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 3,594,579 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 52,466 being administered on March 20th & March 21st.Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment. 

 To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

  • Today, Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist visited Ford Field alongside members of Congress to observe the partnerships and logistics supporting Michigan’s first federal community vaccination site, which is expected to administer an additional 6,000 vaccines per day for eight weeks beginning on March 24.    

“We continue to keep our foot on the gas to ensure that every Michigander who wants a vaccine can get one as quickly as possible,” said Lt. Governor Gilchrist. “The Ford Field community vaccine site is an opportunity to be a national leader in vaccine distribution by building upon the work that we’ve done to ensure equitable access to this safe and effective vaccine — and we thank our local, federal, hospital, and private sector partners for making it happen. We know the vaccine is the most effective way to get back to normal, so that we can all hug our families, get together again, and create economic opportunity going forward. It’s on all of us to stand tall by getting the vaccine when it is our turn.” 

  • Recognizing that Michigan residents have questions about the COVID-19 vaccine, the State of Michigan is hosting the next in a series of community town halls. The March event will focus on older adults, as they are currently eligible to receive the vaccine. This virtual discussion will be held from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday, Mar. 25. This builds upon the previous town halls with faith-based leaders and communities of color, about the safety, efficacy and importance of the COVID-19 vaccines for safely reopening Michigan. In the coming months, Michigan will host additional town halls in partnership with public health and community leaders. Events are live streamed at Facebook.com/MichiganHHS. 

“Even as the COVID-19 vaccine eligibility expands, it’s important that older adults understand the safety and efficacy of the authorized vaccines, so that they can get scheduled as soon as possible if they haven’t already received the vaccine,” said Dr. Alexis Travis, PhD, senior deputy director of the Aging and Adult Services Agency within the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. “Michigan’s older residents have a higher risk of severe illness and death associated with COVID, so increasing their immunity will help protect our communities overall.” 

 

ICYMI 

  • MDHHS announced 4,801 cases of COVID-19 from Sunday & Monday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 629,612.     

 MEDIA COVERAGE 

 ·         Patch: MI COVID-19 Vaccine Eligibility Expands Monday: What To Know 

·         FOX 17: State programs working to address shortage of childcare workers, providers 

·         MI News 26: Governor Whitmer Declared This Week Severe Weather Awareness Week, Statewide Drill Scheduled 

·         K102.5: Deadline Extended To Pay 2021 Michigan Income Tax 

 

3/22/21 – Gov. Whitmer Daily COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • As of March 18, the state of Michigan has administered 3,412,372 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment. 

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

  • Weekly snapshot of the progress Michigan is making to vaccinate 70% of eligible Michiganders from Michigan’s COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard and the CDC’s COVID Data Tracker:  
  • On Friday, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) updated its Gatherings and Mask epidemic order, allowing up to 20% capacity in outdoor stadiums and arenas that establish infection control plans. The update also increases testing for youth ages 13-19 to ensure athletes can safely participate in sports. The changes are designed to balance day-to-day activities while controlling the spread of COVID-19 and saving Michiganders’ lives. Although progress has been made, it is crucial that Michiganders continue to mask up and socially distance as we take steps to get back to normal. The changes to the Order go into effect Monday, March 22, and remain in effect through Monday, April 19.   

“The pandemic has been hard on all of us, but by staying focused on acting quickly, following the science, and listening to experts, we can save lives and help our economy recover faster,” said Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. “Today’s action is an important step towards normalcy, but there’s still more work to do. As always, mask up, maintain social distancing and wash your hands. We all have a personal responsibility to slow the spread of the virus so we can end this pandemic together. By April 5, all Michiganders will be eligible for the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccine is the most effective way to protect you and your family from the virus, and I urge all Michiganders to get vaccinated as soon as it’s available to you.”

“More than 3.2 million doses of the safe and effective COVID vaccines have been administered in Michigan, and we are well on our way to vaccinating 70% of Michiganders ages 16 and up,” said Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive and chief deputy for health at MDHHS. “While we are still very much fighting this pandemic and seeing concerning trends in new cases and hospitalizations, we are making these incremental steps that align with CDC guidance. We are again at a pivotal moment in our fight against COVID-19.  Michiganders must continue doing what works to slow the spread of the disease by wearing a mask, washing their hands, avoiding crowds and making a plan to get the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine as soon as they can.”  

ICYMI 

  •  MDHHS announced 2,660cases of COVID-19 from March 20. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 624,811.      

https://www.michigan.gov/coronavirus 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

 

3/19/21 – Today, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) updated its Gatherings and Mask epidemic order, allowing up to 20% capacity in outdoor stadiums and arenas that establish infection control plans. The update also increases testing for youth ages 13-19 to ensure athletes can safely participate in sports. The changes are designed to balance day-to-day activities while controlling the spread of COVID-19 and saving Michiganders’ lives. Although progress has been made, it is crucial that Michiganders continue to mask up and socially distance as we take steps to get back to normal. The changes to the Order go into effect Monday, March 22, and remain in effect through Monday, April 19.

Gatherings at outdoor stadiums and arenas are increased to 20% of the venue’s capacity if the site:

  • Establishes an infection control plan that complies with the protocols included in MDHHS’s document entitled Enhanced Outdoor Stadium and Arena Guidance.
  • Posts the mitigation plan publicly.
  • Sends infection control plans to the local health department and MDHHS at least seven days before scheduled events.
  • Administers a testing program as specified in MDHHS’s Guidance for Athletics for all players.

MDHHS had been closely monitoring three metrics for stabilization or declines over the past several weeks.  Michigan’s metrics have been increasing for the past few weeks. The presence of more infectious variants, such as the B 1.1.7 variant, threatens our progress in control of the epidemic and MDHHS will be monitoring data closely. In recent days:

  • Positivity rate: has increased for four weeks to 6.2%. This metric is up 177% from the mid-February low but remains below the December high of 19.4%.
  • Statewide case rate: This metric has increase over the past four weeks to 172.9 cases per million. The rate is up 77% from the low in mid-February but remains below peak of 737.8 cases per million on Saturday, Nov 14.
  • Hospital capacity dedicated to COVID-19 is now at 4.9%. This metric peaked at 19.6% on Tuesday, Dec. 4 and is now up 25% from an end of February low.

The Order also increases weekly testing for youth athletes ages 13-19 to safely participate in sports. More information on the program is available on the Michigan.gov/Coronavirus website.

And, to ensure consistency with recently issued CDC guidance, fully vaccinated individuals may now participate in residential gatherings with other fully vaccinated individuals without wearing a mask.

Information around this outbreak is changing rapidly. The latest information is available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus. To learn more about the COVID-19 vaccine, visit Michigan.gov/COVIDVaccine.

March 22 Gatherings Order Infographic  

Dining Seating Guide

Enhanced Outdoor Stadium and Arena Guidance

Key Metrics Infographic

 

3/19/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun will provide an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus on Friday, March 19 at 9:15 AM   

LIVE STREAM FOR PUBLIC VIEWING:  Youtube.com/GovGretchenWhitmer  

Satellite Coordinates:   

GAL 17 K 14 Slot 1 

DOWNLINK:11965 V 

SYMBOL RATE: 4.0 

DVB-S2 8PSK 

FEC: 3/4 

1080i 

Satellite coordinates provided by WLNS-TV 6. The satellite window will open at 9:05 AM. 

3/19/21 – Gov. Whitmer Daily COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE

• The state of Michigan has administered 3,310,162 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 70,648 administered on March 17. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.

• On Thursday, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced that Ford Field vaccination site will serve southeast Michiganders beginning on March 24.
“This Ford Field site will administer 6,000 shots a day starting March 24 and will continue for eight weeks,” Governor Whitmer said.

ICYMI

• Governor Gretchen Whitmer today announced that more than 55,900 individuals who work in entertainment, recreational and indoor food-service venues will begin receiving grant payments of $793. Applications were processed through the Michigan Restaurant and Lodging Association Educational Foundation (MRLAEF). The grants are part of the Employee Assistance Grants program, which was created through a $45 million bipartisan budget appropriation signed by Governor Whitmer in late 2020. Individuals whose employment was impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic were eligible to apply for the grants in January.

“As we continue to address the effects of COVID-19, our top priority is providing financial relief to Michigan families and small businesses, so that we can grow our economy and get back to normal,” Governor Whitmer said. “This special grant program puts dollars in the pockets of Michiganders who work in hospitality, entertainment, recreation, accommodation and food services sectors — as well as the gym and fitness sectors. These Michiganders have made great sacrifices and continue to make great sacrifices as we fight COVID-19.”

• MDHHS announced 2,629 cases of COVID-19 from yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 618,421.

MEDIA COVERAGE 

3/16/21 – In the first of several planned COVID-19 veteran vaccination clinics around Michigan, the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA) will vaccinate veterans and their spouses and caregivers on March 22 in Marquette. All vaccine recipients must be 50 or older. 

The vaccination clinics are a partnership between the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency (MVAA) and the Michigan National Guard, which both fall under the state DMVA.  

The March 22 vaccination clinic will run from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. at Northern Michigan University’s Northern Center. The second vaccine will be given April 19 at the same location. 

Vaccines will be available free of charge for those who register in advance for a time slot by calling 1-800-MICH-VET (1-800-642-4838) and choosing option 6. Registration is open 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday and 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. 

Registrants should bring a picture ID to the clinic. Veterans are also encouraged to bring their DD-214 proof of service, as representatives will be on hand to help them sign up for VA health care and other benefits. 

The MVAA is currently working on scheduling veteran vaccination clinics at other locations around the state.   

3/16/21 – Gov. Whitmer Daily COVID Update –

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 3,084,284total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines with 44,560 being administered on March 13th & 14th. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment. 

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

ICYMI 

  • Governor Gilchrist shared a video on Twitter this Monday morning updating Michiganders on the state of vaccine distribution, including the new community vaccination site at Ford Field in Detroit. Starting March 22ndMichiganders aged 50 and older and 16 and older with preexisting health conditions or disabilities will be eligible for the vaccine.  

https://twitter.com/LtGovGilchrist/status/1371458961619173377

  • MDHHS announced 3,143cases of COVID-19 from Sunday and Monday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 610,580. 

 https://www.michigan.gov/coronavirus 

 HAPPENING ACROSS STATE GOVERNMENT 

  • As Michigan ramps up vaccine distribution, more employers and workers are preparing to return to in-person office work in some form. To support this process, the State has established the new Return-to-Office Workgroup consisting of business, labor, and public health experts to provide Gov. Whitmer with concise recommendations that will be used to inform MDHHS orders and MIOSHA rules as well as standards and best practices for employers to use in planning their own phased reopening. 

“Our priority remains the health and safety of Michigan workers and workplaces. Throughout the pandemic, we have worked closely with employers to provide strategies for safer in-person work and this group is an extension of that collaboration,” said Michigan COVID-19 Workplace Safety Director Sean Egan. “Congregation in any setting creates risk, employers have implemented innovative approaches to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and bringing this new group together will provide a mechanism to capture key insights to align policies with best practices and health guidance.”

  • Approximately 810,000 Michigan children whose access to school meals has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic have begun to receive food assistance benefits. 

“Michigan has been a national leader in making sure families can put food on the table during COVID and this pandemic-EBT will continue to ensure that no child in our state goes hungry during the pandemic,” Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said. “Students are steadily returning to in-person learning because of the progress we’ve made combatting COVID-19, but kids who don’t go to school five days a week have a harder time accessing the free and reduced-price meals available to them at school. Pandemic-EBT closes this gap, giving our children another option for accessing nutritious food.”

Students in grades pre-kindergarten through 12 are eligible if they qualify for free or reduced-price lunches at school and in-person learning is not available at their school or is not available on a full-time basis. Pandemic-EBT will provide another way for students who do not have in-person classes to access food – along with Michigan Department of Education (MDE) programs that provide meals to students at mobile and stationary locations.    

  • The Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) today unveiled a new $282 million rental assistance program to help tenants facing pandemic-related hardships avoid eviction while also ensuring landlords can recoup owed rent. Another $340 million is available to be appropriated by the state legislature, bringing the program to $622 million. 

The COVID Emergency Rental Assistance (CERA) program replaces the popular Eviction Diversion Program (EDP) that MSHDA launched in July 2020 and helped about 16,000 households across the state avoid eviction and get current on rent.

“For so many Michiganders, the fear of losing their home during the pandemic has been very real,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “That’s why I took steps to mitigate evictions with a moratorium and the Eviction Diversion Program last year. I was proud to sign this legislation bringing more federal funds into MSHDA to help individuals and families by alleviating the burden of rent and utility payments.”  

MEDIA COVERAGE 

 

3/15/21 – Gov. Whitmer Daily COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 2,921,636 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

  • Weekly snapshot of the progress Michigan is making to vaccinate 70% of eligible Michiganders from Michigan’s COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard and the CDC’s COVID Data Tracker:  
  • Friday, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced that Michigan’s COVID-19 vaccination eligibility would expand to those ages 16+ with high-risk conditions starting March 22, and all Michiganders ages 16+ would be eligible starting April 5.

https://twitter.com/GovWhitmer/status/1370453237460049920 

  • Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced on Friday that an eight-week mass vaccination site with the capacity to administer 6,000 doses each day will open on March 24 at Ford Field in Detroit to serve residents in the broader southeast Michigan region. The Biden Administration in partnership with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) selected southeast Michigan for this major new community vaccination site.   

The site, which was selected according to the CDC’s priority tool to help those hardest hit and most vulnerable, will operate from 8 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., seven days a week, for eight weeks under the federal government’s vaccination pilot program. The facility will be managed by the State of Michigan with support from FEMA, Wayne County, the City of Detroit, Ford Field, Meijer, Henry Ford Health System, and the Lions.   

“The safe and effective vaccine is the best way to protect Michiganders and their families, and it is essential to getting our country back to normal, so that we can all hug our loved ones, get back to work, and send our kids to school safely,” said Governor Whitmer. “I want to thank President Biden and FEMA for the opportunity to build one of the nation’s first community vaccination sites to service the entire Southeast Michigan region. Over one million Michiganders of all races have already been safely vaccinated, and this site will help us to reach our goal of equitably vaccinating 70 percent of Michiganders who are 16 years or older more quickly. Ramping up vaccine distribution will also help our economy recover faster and help save our small businesses that have been hit hard by the pandemic. Let’s get to work, and let’s get it done.”   

“After a year of tremendous challenges and heartache, the new vaccine site at Ford Field will be a beacon of hope in a community that was hit hard by the devastating impacts of this deadly virus,” said Lt. Governor Gilchrist. “When we saw this virus targeting Black and Brown communities, Michigan got to work setting up one of the nation’s first task forces to help reduce the staggering, disproportionate rate of COVID-19 cases and deaths in communities of color. As we continue to expand our state’s vaccine program, we must build upon the work that we’ve done in this space to ensure equitable access to this safe and effective vaccine. We can honor the legacies of the those we’ve lost to this virus by ensuring that we all get the vaccine when it is our turn.” 

 ICYMI 

 

  • MDHHS announced 1,659 cases of COVID-19 from March 13. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 607,437.    

https://www.michigan.gov/coronavirus 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

 

3/12/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today announced that an eight-week mass vaccination site with the capacity to administer 6,000 doses each day will open on March 24 at Ford Field in Detroit to serve residents in the broader southeast Michigan region. The Biden Administration in partnership with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) selected southeast Michigan for this major new community vaccination site. 

The site, which was selected according to the CDC’s priority tool to help those hardest hit and most vulnerable, will operate from 8 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., seven days a week, for eight weeks under the federal government’s vaccination pilot program. The facility will be managed by the State of Michigan with support from FEMA, Wayne County, the City of Detroit, Ford FieldMeijer, Henry Ford Health System, and the Lions. 

  

Michigan’s regular statewide vaccine allotment. First doses of the Pfizer vaccine will be offered at the site for the first three weeks of operation. Those vaccinated within that timeframe will be guaranteed a second dose during fourth, fifth and sixth weeks of operation. The brand of vaccine to be supplied during the final two weeks of the of the mass vaccination site has not yet been determined.  

 

The vaccine will be offered at no cost, and insurance is not required, nor will it be requested at the vaccination center. Any Michigan resident who is currently eligible to receive the vaccine under the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) vaccine prioritization guidance will be able to register for an appointment. The site is not yet taking reservations, but specific instructions on how to book an appointment will be announced in the coming days. The most recent vaccine prioritization guidance  can be found on Michigan’s COVID-19 website. 

 

MDHHS follows the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations for prioritization of distribution and administration of COVID-19 vaccines. CDC recommendations are based on input from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, the federal advisory committee made up of medical and public health experts who develop recommendations on the use of vaccines in the United States.   

 

Free parking will be available at the vaccination site. For those who indicate, during the registration process, they need assistance obtaining transportation to and from the vaccination site, the state is working to provide free of charge ride share options.       

 

3/12/21 – Gov. Whitmer Daily COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 2,835,638 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 58,722 being administered on March 10. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

  •  The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) and the Protect Michigan     Commission have awarded 35,800 doses of COVID-19 vaccine to 22 pilot projects in an effort to help   enhance the state’s vaccine equity strategy. 

The goal of the pilot program is to help remove barriers to vaccine access for Michiganders 60 and older who live in communities with high Social Vulnerability Index (SVI) and high COVID-19 mortality rates. If providers have additional capacity in their project, they may expand vaccination to include people age 50-59 with disabilities or comorbid conditions.  

“We want to make sure all Michiganders have access to the safe and effective vaccines as we work toward our goal of vaccinating 70% of Michiganders age 16 and up as quickly as possible,” said Dr. Joneigh KhaldunChief Medical Executive and Chief Deputy for Health with MDHHS. “I want to thank everyone who submitted an application to support these efforts and to help increase vaccinations for those most at risk of negative COVID-19 outcomes. I look forward to more outreach to vulnerable communities as vaccine supplies increase. Your ability to get a vaccine should not be impacted by whether you are in a rural or urban part of the state, are lower income, are living with a disability, are not fluent in English, or don’t have access to a car, a computer or the Internet.” 

ICYMI

  • MDHHS announced 2,091 cases of COVID-19 from yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 603,375.       

MEDIA COVERAGE 

 

3/11/21 – From the Protect Michigan Commission:

One year ago, our world changed forever. Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Lieutenant Governor Garlin Gilchrist yesterday released a video to honor those we have lost and all of us still making sacrifices today.

Yesterday marked one year since COVID-19 was first reported in our state. But we’re in the second half of our fight against the virus, and we’re all on the same team. We’re united against this virus. We have three safe and effective vaccines against this virus. We are determined to ensure that every Michigander who wants the vaccine can get the vaccine.

And as the Governor said, ‘As vaccinations ramp up nationwide, we can see the light at the end of this tunnel.’

We’ve come so far. Let’s keep our hope alive and finish this fight to defeat COVID once and for all.

3/10/21 – Gov. Whitmer Daily COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 2,689,248 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines with 32,287 being administered on March 8th. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment. 

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

  • The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) and the Protect Michigan Commission have awarded 35,800 doses of COVID-19 vaccine to 22 pilot projects in an effort to help enhance the state’s vaccine equity strategy. 

The goal of the pilot program is to help remove barriers to vaccine access for Michiganders 60 and older who live in communities with high Social Vulnerability Index (SVI) and high COVID-19 mortality rates. If providers have additional capacity in their project, they may expand vaccination to include people age 50-59 with disabilities or comorbid conditions. 

“We want to make sure all Michiganders have access to the safe and effective vaccines as we work toward our goal of vaccinating 70% of Michiganders age 16 and up as quickly as possible,” said Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive and chief deputy for health with MDHHS. “I want to thank everyone who submitted an application to support these efforts and to help increase vaccinations for those most at risk of negative COVID-19 outcomes. I look forward to more outreach to vulnerable communities as vaccine supplies increase. Your ability to get a vaccine should not be impacted by whether you are in a rural or urban part of the state, are lower income, are living with a disability, are not fluent in English, or don’t have access to a car, a computer or the Internet.” 

ICYMI 

  • Gretchen Whitmer has ordered U.S. and Michigan flags within the State Capitol Complex and upon all public buildings and grounds across the State of Michigan to be lowered to half-staff on Wednesday, March 10 to honor the one-year anniversary of the coronavirus in Michigan and mourn those who have lost their lives to COVID-19. Michiganders are also being asked to turn on the lights outside of their homes on Wednesday, March 10, from 8:00 PM to 9:00 PM, in remembrance of the Michiganders we have lost. 

“One year ago, our world changed forever as we confronted the greatest challenge of our generation,” Governor Gretchen Whitmer said. “By lowering the flags to honor the one-year anniversary of the virus’s confirmed presence in Michigan, we remember the nearly 16,000 sons and daughters, moms and dads, and neighbors and friends who passed away from COVID-19 in Michigan. As we honor their legacies, let us also take a moment to grieve together, and know that we are not alone in our mourning.  

One year after our first confirmed case, we now have three safe and effective vaccines to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. I encourage all Michiganders to continue to practice social distancing and proper hygiene and get vaccinated once they are eligible because this is the most effective way to protect you, your family, and others from COVID-19. There is light at the end of the tunnel, and we will get through this pandemic together.” 

  • Today Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed legislation that supports the COVID-19 recovery plan she sent to the legislature in January. It includes key provisions of the governor’s MI COVID Recovery Plan, including a $2.25/hour wage increase for direct care workers, $283 million in federal emergency rental assistance to help ensure people can stay in their homes, up to $110 million in federal funding for vaccine administration, and up to $555 million in federal funding for testing and tracing.  

“I think it’s great news that we’ve been able to get some of the federal funding available to us appropriated, including passing two of my key proposals to provide a wage increase for direct care workers and increased funding to help expand vaccinations for Michiganders who are 50 years old or older,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “However, the reality is that there is more work to be done and there are still billions of dollars in federal funding that we need to get out the door to help businesses and families across the state. The bills I received were not negotiated with me or my administration, and I continue to call on the legislature to ensure that we work together to ensure we maximize every penny that is available. There were problems in the bills that I had to veto, and I expect the legislature to step up to fix the bill to allocate all of the money so we can get back to normal as soon as possible.” 

  • MDHHS announced 954 cases of COVID-19 from yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 598,968. 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

3/9/21 – Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has ordered U.S. and Michigan flags within the State Capitol Complex and upon all public buildings and grounds across the State of Michigan to be lowered to half-staff on Wednesday, March 10 to honor the one-year anniversary of the coronavirus in Michigan and mourn those who have lost their lives to COVID-19Michiganders are also being asked to turn on the lights outside of their homes on Wednesday, March 10, from 8:00 PM to 9:00 PM, in remembrance of the Michiganders we have lost. 

Flags should remain lowered through Saturday, March 20 in accordance with the previous announcement for former Attorney General Frank J. Kelley. Flags should be returned to full-staff on Sunday, March 21. 

3/9/21 – Today Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed legislation that supports the COVID-19 recovery plan she sent to the legislature in January. It includes key provisions of the governor’s MI COVID Recovery Plan, including a $2.25/hour wage increase for direct care workers, $283 million in federal emergency rental assistance to help ensure people can stay in their homes, up to $110 million in federal funding for vaccine administration, and up to $555 million in federal funding for testing and tracing.

State Budget Director David Massaron also sent a letter to the appropriations chairs in the House and Senate, asking again for a joint meeting no later than Friday, March 12 where formal negotiations can occur, with the goal of getting the remaining more than $2 billion in federal funding appropriated. In the letter, Director Massaron shares his desire to provide meaningful help to businesses impacted by the pandemic.  Letter from Director Massaron.pdf

As part of the MI COVID Recovery Plan, Governor Whitmer proposed $665 million to expand the state’s vaccine and testing programs, and $2.1 billion for schools. Unfortunately, the legislature inserted boilerplate that aims to block expenditure of these funds unless the governor signs separate legislation undercutting Michigan’s pandemic response. The governor has called on the legislature to return to the table to fully appropriate the more than $2 billion in unused federal funds. 

Governor Whitmer proposed fully allocating $622 million for rent and utility assistance, but the legislature only provided $283 million – withholding $339 million that was meant to keep families safely in their homes and provide direct aid to landlords. The COVID Emergency Rental Assistance (CERA) program replaces the popular Eviction Diversion Program (EDP) MSHDA launched in July 2020, which helped approximately 16,000 households across the state avoid eviction and get current on owed rent. MSHDA will administer CERA through its statewide network of Housing Assessment and Resource Agencies (HARAs), which will be responsible for working directly with tenants and landlords so that the rental arrearages are paid and housing stability is preserved. For more information, visit Michigan.gov/CERA. 

Governor Whitmer also proposed fully allocating $2.7 billion to help residents feed their families, but the legislature only provided $600 million – withholding $2.1 billion in food assistance through the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Michiganders can apply for food assistance by going online to www.michigan.gov/MIBridges. 

HB 4047 and HB 4048 Signing Letter.pdf   HB 4049 Veto Letter.pdf    

3/8/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist are marking the one-year anniversary of the first cases of COVID-19 being diagnosed in Michigan by asking all Michiganders to turn on the lights outside of their homes on Wednesday, March 10th, from 8:00 PM to 9:00 PM, in remembrance of the Michiganders we have lost.  

3/5/21 – Gov. Whitmer Daily COVID Update –

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 2,427,156 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

ICYMI 

  • MDHHS announced 1,526 cases of COVID-19 from Wednesday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 593,279.    

 MEDIA COVERAGE 

 

3/4/21 – Gov. Whitmer Daily COVID Update –

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 2,351,125 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 40,066 being administered on March 2ndEvery COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

ICYMI 

  • President Biden announced Tuesday that the U.S. will have enough vaccines for “every adult in America” by the end of May. In a brief speech at the White House, he attributed this acceleration to the new FDA-approved Johnson & Johnson vaccine as well as the administration’s deal with Merck & Co to help manufacture vaccines quickly. This represents a positive update from previous estimates, which put thmilestone of procuring enough vaccines for every American adult at late July.  
  • To help reach the state’s goal of vaccinating 70% of Michiganders over age 16 and bring a quicker end to the COVID-19 pandemic in Michigan,  Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) officials today announced the state is expanding vaccination eligibility beginning Monday, March 8. This change follows the announcement by President Joe Biden that ramped-up production will provide enough doses for 300 million Americans by the end May. 

MDHHS is moving forward with the vaccination of Michiganders age 50 and older with medical conditions or disabilities and caregiver family members and guardians who care for children with special health care needs. Beginning Monday, March 22, vaccine eligibility will again expand to include all Michiganders 50 and older. To date, more than 40% of Michiganders age 65 and older have been vaccinated. 

  • MDHHS announced 1,536 cases of COVID-19 from Wednesday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 591,753.  

 MEDIA COVERAGE 

 

3/2/21 – Today, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) updated two of its epidemic orders, allowing for increased capacity limits at various venues, larger residential and nonresidential gatherings and expanded visitation opportunities at residential care facilities. Changes are designed to balance reopening while controlling the spread of COVID-19 and save Michiganders’ lives. Although progress has been made in reduction of hospitalizations, it is crucial that Michiganders continue to mask up and socially distance as we reopen. View Release

3/2/21 – Today, March 2nd, Governor Gretchen Whitmer, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, and MDHHS Director Elizabeth Hertel will provide an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus at 2:00 p.m.

LIVE STREAM FOR PUBLIC VIEWING:  

Youtube.com/GovGretchenWhitmer  

Satellite Coordinates:   

Galaxy 17 K 18 slot Six 

Downlink Freq. 12075.0 vertical 

Symbol rate:  4.0 

FEC:  ¾ 

DVBS-2/8PSK 

1080i 

Satellite coordinates provided by WLNS-TV 6. The satellite window will open at 1:50 PM.  

3/2/21 – Gov Whitmer Daily COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 2,269,495 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 4,786being administered on March 1st. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment. 

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

ICYMI 

  • Michigan is expected to receive its largest shipment of more than 400,000 vaccines this week, and the CDC has now approved the Johnson & Johnson vaccine for U.S. distribution and use.  Governor Garlin Gilchrist explain this update on Michigan’s vaccine progress Monday morning. 
  • Gretchen Whitmer and State Treasurer Rachael Eubanks announced today the expansion of the MI Classroom Heroes COVID-19 Grants to include a new grant program for Great Start Readiness Program (GRSP), Head Start, adult education and young adult (ages 18-26) special education classroom teachers.   

“The MI Classroom Heroes COVID-19 Grants are just a small token of our gratitude to educators for going above and beyond during the pandemic,” Governor Whitmer said. “When COVID-19 hit, teachers worked around the clock to quickly transform from in-person teaching to remote instruction to ensure that their students could continue learning. It is simply the right thing to do to expand these grants to include all specific program teachers across the state.”   

  • MDHHS announced 1,569 cases of COVID-19 from Sunday and Monday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 589,150. 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

3/1/21 – Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and State Treasurer Rachael Eubanks today announced the expansion of the MI Classroom Heroes COVID-19 Grants to include a new grant program for Great Start Readiness Program (GRSP), Head Start, adult education and young adult (ages 18-26) special education classroom teachers. 

The GRSP, Head Start, Adult Education and Young Adult Special Education Teacher COVID-19 Grant Program enables these specific program teachers to receive up to $500 for extra hours worked and costs incurred during the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic last spring.  

A state budget appropriation signed by Governor Whitmer at the end of 2020 provides $2.5 million to make specific program teachers eligible to receive a MI Classroom Heroes COVID-19 Grant, who were not eligible under previous programs.  

Full-time and part-time GRSP, Head Start, adult education and young adult special education teachers in a school district or nonprofit nonpublic school classrooms during the 2019-2020 school year prior to moving to remote learning are eligible.  

To receive up to $500, specific program teachers must have performed at least of 75% of their standard instruction workload in brick-and-mortar classrooms to moving to remote instruction on April 2, 2020.  

The state Treasury Department is working with the Michigan Department of Education, school entities and other education partners to implement MI Classroom Heroes COVID-19 Grants. Eligible specific program teachers should consult the school entity where they worked during the 2019-2020 school year to ensure they receive a grant.  

Grant funding checks for the GRSP, Head Start, Adult Education and Young Adult Special Education Teacher COVID-19 Grant Program are anticipated to be sent directly from the state Treasury Department to teachers in June.  

Under the Teacher and Support Staff COVID-19 Grant Programs – the first two grant programs under the MI Classroom Heroes COVID-19 Grants umbrella – more than 138,000 K-12 teachers and support staff payments were sent MI Classroom Heroes Grants checks. More than $51 million is being distributed to eligible K-12 public school teachers and support staff and nonpublic school teachers.  

For more information about MI Classroom Heroes COVID-19 Grants, go to www.Michigan.gov/MIClassroomHeroes 

2/2/21 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer released the following statement after the United States Food and Drug Administration granted emergency use authorization of the Johnson & Johnson single-dose COVID-19 Vaccine:

“This scientific breakthrough is terrific news for our families, frontline workers, and small businesses who are eager to get vaccinated and continue our steady return to normalcy. We now have a total of three safe, effective vaccines from Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson.

“As supply continues increasing because of the efforts of the Biden administration, I am confident that we can reach our goal of vaccinating 70% of Michiganders 16 and up at a rate of 50,000 shots per day, a metric we have been meeting in recent weeks. Our vaccine rollout will continue to focus on our most vulnerable, promote equity, and prioritize our essential workers and older at-risk Michiganders. The addition of this one-and-done vaccine will help us get shots in arms quicker.

Michigan has administered more than two million vaccines, moving the state closer to Governor Whitmer’s goal of equitably vaccinating at least 70% of Michiganders ages 16 and older as soon as possible. As part of these efforts, Michigan is working to administer 50,000 shots per day through Governor Whitmer’s MI COVID Recovery Plan, partnering with private organizations and nontraditional venues to create more opportunities for Michigan residents to receive a vaccine.

2/24/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer, Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist II, and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun provided an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus and ramp up vaccinations efforts. They were joined by Craig Carmoney, superintendent of the year and Superintendent of Meridian Public Schools in Midland County who was recently appointed to Governor Whitmer’s Student Recovery Advisory Council. The governor talked about the importance of in-person learning and how the state is committed to keeping Michigan safely moving forward 

To view the PowerPoint presentation that the governor used during today’s press conference, click: 2.24.2021 COVID PPT.pdf

2/24/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer, Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist II, and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun will provide an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus on Wednesday, February 24th at 1:30 PM.  

LIVE STREAM FOR PUBLIC VIEWING: 

Youtube.com/GovGretchenWhitmer    

twitter.com/GovWhitmer   

Facebook.com/GovGretchenWhitmer 

Satellite Coordinates:  

Space: G17/K14, slot 1
DL: 11965.0 Vertical 
Symbol rate:  4.0
FEC:  ¾
DVBS-2/8PSK
1080i 

Satellite coordinates provided by WLNS-TV 6. The satellite window will open at 1:20 PM. 

2/24/21 – Governor Whitmer COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 1,942,759total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 23,117 being administered on February 22. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment. 

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

  •  As of February 23rd, the state of Michiganis in the top 10 in the country for total vaccine adm In a video posted on Twitter, Lt. Governor Gilchrist said that the the MI COVID Recovery Plan “would help us expand our vaccine program and ensure that more and more Michiganders could get vaccinated. It would also provide hundreds of millions of dollars to help our children get back in the classroom safely.”  

https://twitter.com/LtGovGilchrist/status/1364207441848774665 

ICYMI 

  • Yesterday, GovernorWhitmer, in accordance with a proclamation issued by President Biden, has ordered U.S. and Michigan flags within the State Capitol Complex and upon all public buildings and grounds across the state of Michigan to be lowered to half-staff immediately through Friday, February 26 to honor and mourn those who have lost their lives due to COVID-19.    

“As we lower the flags to honor and remember the 500,000 American lives, my heart is with the families of loved ones who passed away from this vicious virus,” Whitmer said. “Our nation grieves as we continue the fight to eradicate COVID-19. The quickest way out of the pandemic is through equitable distribution of the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines. That’s why we are encouraging every Michigander to make a plan to get vaccinated when a vaccine becomes available. We can see the light at the end of the tunnel, and we will get through this pandemic together.” 

  • Lieutenant Governor Garlin Gilchrist IIissued the following statement after President Joe Biden announced changes to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to provide an exclusive two-week window for small businesses with fewer than 20 employees to apply for forgivable loans guaranteed by the federal government, helping minority-owned businesses who were previously unable to secure a loan under the previous administration’s rollout.   

“I applaud the Biden-Harris Administration for stepping up to help small businesses in the heart of communities across the state of Michigan. While more than 100,000 PPP loans have helped provide relief to Michigan businesses already, we know that many of our state’s smallest businesses did not have access to this program, particularly businesses owned and run by Black entrepreneurs and other entrepreneurs of color. Oftentimes, these businesses have anchored neighborhoods for generations, and there remains a significant need for additional resources to support these local entrepreneurs and innovators. President Biden continues to follow through on his promise to prioritize equity through his administration’s work to better serve and uplift communities of color.” 

  • MDHHS announced 1,316cases of COVID-19 from yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 582,719. 

HAPPENING ACROSS STATE GOVERNMENT  

  • The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) and the Protect Michigan Commission have announced details for a new program to help enhance the state’s vaccine equity strategy. Michigan providers that are federally enrolled to administer COVID-19 vaccines are encouraged to apply by Monday, March 1 if they can help remove barriers for those ages 60 and up who are most vulnerable to the effects of the virus.  

“We want to make sure all Michiganders have access to the safe and effective vaccines as we work toward our goal of vaccinating 70% of Michiganders age 16 and up as quickly as possible,” said Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive and chief deputy for health. “We are working hard to eliminate any barriers to vaccine access. Your ability to get a vaccine should not be impacted by whether you are in a rural or urban part of the state, are lower income, or don’t have access to a car, a computer, the Internet or don’t speak English. This is what equity means.”  

  • The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) will be exploring federal flexibility announced by the U.S. Department of Education (USED) Monday evening on state assessment and accountability requirements, MDE announced. 

“I appreciate that, during the pandemic, the U.S. Department of Education has recognized the need for a number of flexibilities, including school identification, accountability, and participation rate,” said State Superintendent Dr. Michael Rice. 

USED announced that, on an individual basis, it will consider flexibility for states on administering assessments based on the specific circumstances across or within the state, and that it will work with states to address their individual needs and conditions while ensuring the maximum available data to inform the targeting of resources and supports. 

 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

2/23/21 – Virtual town hall about COVID-19 vaccine in communities of color

Recognizing that Michigan residents have questions about the COVID-19 vaccine, the State of Michigan is hosting the next in a series of community town halls, live-streamed at Facebook.com/MichiganHHS. The next event is this Thursday, Feb. 25 at 4 p.m. and will address questions within communities of color.

Moderated by Lieutenant Governor Garlin Gilchrist, speakers include:

  • Joneigh Khaldun, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services
  • N. Charles Anderson, Urban League of Detroit and Southeastern Michigan
  • Reverend Wendell Anthony, Detroit NAACP
  • Dr. Lynn Smitherman, MD, Wayne Pediatrics
  • Eva A. Garza Dewaelsche, SER Metro-Detroit, Jobs for Progress, Inc.
  • Dr. Zafer I. Obeid, M.D., Arab American & Chaldean Council
  • Dr. Terry Samuels, Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians

The goal of the town hall series is to address the safety and efficacy of the vaccine by answering questions within vulnerable communities that have been disproportionately impacted, including communities of color.

From the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, persons of color have faced devastating and disproportionate harm, both nationally and here in Michigan. The cumulative COVID-19 case rate in Black and African American populations has been over 40% higher than the rate in white populations. In addition, the cumulative COVID-19 death rate in Black and African American populations has been over three times the rate in white populations.

According to research, 66% of Michiganders are likely or very likely to get the COVID-19 vaccine and 34% would like to get it as soon as possible. However, there are disparities when it comes to who is likely to get the vaccine with 47% of white Michiganders very likely to get the vaccine versus 25% of Black Michiganders.

Ahead of the discussion, attendees are encouraged to submit their questions for the town hall about the COVID-19 vaccine. Any questions that cannot be answered during the town halls due to time constraints, will be reviewed and added to the State of Michigan COVID-19 vaccine frequently asked questions. In the following months, Michigan will also host additional town halls in partnership with public health and community leaders.

2/19/21 – Gov. Whitmer COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 1,740,608 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 37,137 being administered on February 17. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

  • Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist II had the opportunity to visit a vaccine site in Southfield. He was accompanied by his grandma who received her first does of the COVID-19 vaccine. Both the lieutenant governor and the governor have urged everyone to make a plan for how they will get vaccinated once eligible 

https://twitter.com/LtGovGilchrist/status/1361841457594847235  

 

ICYMI 

  • MDHHS announced 888 cases of COVID-19 from yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 578,091.    

 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

2/18/21 – Getting Michiganders, in every single community across the state, the most accurate up-to-date information about the approved COVID-19 vaccine is top priority for the Protect Michigan Commission.

Unfortunately, there’s a lot of misinformation and myths circulating online and by word of mouth that may be causing vaccine hesitation. It’s important that we all work together to keep our families and friends safe and healthy by knowing the facts.

Please know that side effects are mild and in fact, a really good sign that your body is working to build immunity to COVID-19. Further, because the vaccines do not contain the COVID-19 virus, you cannot get sick from the vaccine itself.

After COVID-19 vaccination, you may have some mild side effects. Side effects are a normal sign that your body is building protection. For more information on the vaccine and potential side effects visit Michigan.gov/COVIDvaccine.

2/17/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun provided an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus and ramp up vaccinations throughout the state. During the press conference, the governor announced the new report released by the Michigan Poverty Task Force that outlines bold new initiatives, expanded state policies and a significant financial investment.  

The governor continued to urge bipartisanship to pass her MI COVID Recovery plan and her FY2022 budget recommendation so the state can ramp-up vaccination efforts and come out of the pandemic and economic downturn stronger than ever before. 

She was joined by Kim Trent Deputy Director of Prosperity for Michigan Labor and Economic Opportunity Department or LEO, Mike Larson, President of the Michigan Association of United Ways, and Dr. Dr. Farhan Bhatti.  

To view the PowerPoint presentation that the governor used during today’s press conference, click here: 2.17.2021 COVID PPT.pdf  

2/17/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun will provide an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus today, Wednesday, February 17 at 12:00 PM.

LIVE STREAM FOR PUBLIC VIEWING:  

Youtube.com/GovGretchenWhitmer  

Facebook.com/GovGretchenWhitmer  

Twitter.com/GovWhitmer  

Satellite Coordinates:   

Galaxy 17 K 14 slot 3
Downlink Freq. 11977.0 vertical 
Symbol rate:  4.0
FEC:  ¾
DVBS-2/8PSK
1080i 

Satellite coordinates provided by WLNS-TV 6. The satellite window will open at 11:5AM.  

2/17/21 – COVID Updates from Gov. Whitmer:

Town Hall with Minority Communities – Feb. 25, 4-5 pm – SPREAD THE WORD!

The State of Michigan is hosting a series of virtual town halls about the COVID-19 vaccine through Facebook Live on the MDHHS Facebook page. Residents will have the opportunity to hear about the safety, efficacy, and importance of the COVID-19 vaccine for safely opening Michigan.

https://www.michigan.gov/coronavirus/0,9753,7-406-98178_103214-549767–,00.html

Help with signing up for Vaccine Appointments

Michigan Vaccine Strategy

https://www.michigan.gov/documents/coronavirus/1.29.21_Michigan_Vaccine_Strategy_FINAL_714811_7.pdf

Goals:

  • 70% of Michiganders age 16 and up are vaccinated as soon as possible
  • 90% of dosages received are administered within 7 days of arrival
  • 95% of people get their second dose of vaccine within the expected time frame
  • There is no disparity in vaccination rates across racial and ethnic groups or by social vulnerability index
  • No Michigander should have to drive more than 20 minutes to reach a vaccination site

2/12/21 – Governor Whitmer COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 1,391,159 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 41,163 being administered on February 9. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.   

ICYMI 

  • Governor Whitmer released her third executive budget recommendation yesterday centered on equitably growing the state’s economy by expanding skills training and childcare for families, providing a further down payment on rebuilding the state’s crumbling bridges and water infrastructure, and helping small businesses recover from the pandemic. State Budget Director David Massaron outlined the recommendations this morning to a joint session of the House and Senate Appropriations Committees. 

“To build Michigan’s economy back better, we must stay laser-focused on getting Michigan back to work and getting our kids back in school safely,” said Gov. Whitmer. “The budget plan I released today along with the MI COVID Recovery plan I announced last month makes the investments we need to jumpstart our economy and build a better Michigan for everyone. I am committed to working across the aisle with the legislature to ensure that we don’t waste a dime of the federal aid we have received thus far, so we can help Michigan families and small businesses get back on their feet. Let’s get to work and let’s get it done.” 

  • MDHHS announced 1,284 cases of COVID-19 yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 572,179.  

HAPPENING ACROSS STATE GOVERNMENT 

  • Approximately 350,000 Michigan families will continue to have access to additional food assistance benefits during February as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) announced yesterday. 

“As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact virtually every aspect of our lives, the last thing Michigan families should have to worry about is being able to afford their groceries each week,” said Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. “Michiganders deserve to have peace of mind in knowing resources are available to help them during this time, which is why I’m grateful we can continue providing this vital support for families throughout the state.”  

MEDIA COVERAGE 

 

2/10/21 – Governor Whitmer COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 1,339,129total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 28,243 being administered on February 8. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment. 

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

  • Yesterday, Governor Whitmer and Major General Paul Rogers visited the Michigan State University (MSU) Pavilion to observe its ongoing vaccination efforts for area residents. Joining them for the site visit was  Col. Karen Sims, the Medical Detachment Officer in Charge, along with state Representative Julie Brixie (D-East Lansing).  

“It’s an honor to witness firsthand the heroic work of our frontline health care workers and the men and women of our Michigan National Guard, who are working non-stop to administer the safe and effective vaccine to Michiganders across the state,” said Governor Whitmer. “Every shot in the arm brings us one step closer to ending this pandemic, and I encourage all Michiganders to make a plan for how they will get vaccinated when it’s their turn. It’s on all of us to continue social distancing, washing our hands and masking up so we can beat this virus once and for all.”   

  • The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS)shared how the COVID-19 vaccine works on our cells and how it helps defeat the virus.  

 https://twitter.com/MichiganHHS/status/1359128686029647878 

 

ICYMI 

  • Governor Whitmer gave a briefing yesterday about the state’s response and handling of COVID-19. The governor was joined by Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, the chief medical executive of the MDHHS and Kevin Polston, superintendent of Godfrey-Lee Public Schools and chair of the Student Advisory Council. The governor reaffirmed her commitment to keeping Michigan safely moving forward by getting students back to in-person learning by March 1st or sooner. 
  • A recent study by the Duke-Margolis Center for Health Policy and the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices found that the governors’ Coronavirus Task Force on Racial Disparities, which is led by Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist II, has made significant and sustainable progress towards its goal of reducing health-based racial disparities associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.  The study also recommended that the lessons learned from the Michigan Coronavirus Task Force on Racial Disparities “can be applied in states and territories across the nation to address this longstanding and difficult challenge.”   

“Our administration took swift action to address the pre-existing racial inequities in health that were dangerously exacerbated by the pandemic, and we are proud of the progress we’ve made towards eliminating COVID 19’s disproportionate impact,” said Governor Whitmer. “I want to thank the Michigan Coronavirus Task Force on Racial Disparities for their excellent guidance that has led to Michigan becoming an example to the rest of the country in how to fairly fight this pandemic and support vulnerable communities. We all have a personal responsibility to slow the spread of the pandemic and eliminate the virus as quickly as possible so we can return to a strong economy and get back to normal daily activities. I ask that Michiganders continue to follow public health guidance  by wearing face masks, socially distancing, and washing your hands as we continue to tackle the COVID-19 crisis.” 

“We are incredibly proud of the progress the Michigan Coronavirus Task Force on Racial Disparities has made in reducing the staggering, disproportionate impact COVID-19 has had on Black folks,” said Lt. Governor Gilchrist. “While we have come a long way, we are still living in the midst of this pandemic and in the wake of decades of racial injustices that have led to these health disparities. Our administration remains committed to reducing racial disparities of all kinds among our state’s vulnerable populations and continuing to fight this virus.” 

  • MDHHS announced 563 cases of COVID-19 yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 569,980.

 

HAPPENING ACROSS STATE GOVERNMENT 

  • Two-thirds of Michigan school employees are either vaccinated or in the process of being vaccinated against COVID-19, according to an online survey of MEA members.

“Our members see the vaccine as a critical component to reopening classrooms across the state, along with continued mitigation measures like masks, social distancing and sanitization,” said MEA President Paula Herbart. “They are following the science and are embracing the vaccines’ potential for protecting their health and safety, as well as that of their students. While thousands of educators are still waiting to be scheduled for vaccination because of the short supply of the vaccine, these results show a great deal of progress.” 

  • The MiSTEM Council released their Annual Report, highlighting goals for 2021 to create a vibrant STEM ecosystem that ultimately leads to more engaged students and a stronger Michigan workforce. COVID-19 online STEM education resources are also available to help navigate educating in the time of COVID-19. With these actions, MiSTEM continues to realize its vision for Michigan as a home to innovators who create more inclusive and prosperous businesses and communities. 

“The MiSTEM Network has successfully built diverse partnerships across the state and made tremendous progress toward expanding STEM opportunities,” said Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO) Acting Director Susan Corbin. “When more students have access to STEM curriculum, they gain the skills needed for high-demand, high-skilled careers of the future.”  

https://twitter.com/MichiganLEO/status/1359154815452995592  

MEDIA COVERAGE 

 

2/9/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun provided an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus. They were joined by Kevin Polston, superintendent of Godfrey-Lee Public Schools and chair of the Student Advisory Council to talk about the governor’s commitment to keep Michigan safely moving forward by getting kids back to school by March 1st 

To view the PowerPoint presentation that the governor and Dr. Khaldun used during today’s press conference, click the link:  2.9.2021 COVID PPT.pdf

2/9/21 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Major General Paul Rogers visited the Michigan State University (MSU) Pavilion to observe its ongoing vaccination efforts for area residents. Joining them for the site visit were Lt. Col. Karen Sims, the Medical Detachment Officer in Charge, along with state Representative Julie Brixie (D-East Lansing).

As of today, Michigan has administered 1,292,572 vaccines, moving the state closer to its goal of equitably vaccinating at least 70% of Michiganders ages 16 and older as soon as possible. As part of these efforts, Michigan is working to administer 50,000 shots per day through the Governor’s MI COVID Recovery Plan, partnering with private and academic organizations like at MSU Pavilion to create more opportunities for Michigan residents to receive a vaccine.

2/9/21 – A recent study by the Duke-Margolis Center for Health Policy and the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices found that Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s Michigan Coronavirus Task Force on Racial Disparities, which is led by Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist II, has made significant and sustainable progress towards its goal of reducing health-based racial disparities associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.  

The study also recommended that the lessons learned from the Michigan Coronavirus Task Force on Racial Disparities “can be applied in states and territories across the nation to address this longstanding and difficult challenge.”  

Last year in April, Gov. Whitmer created the Michigan Coronavirus Task Force on Racial Disparities in response to the COVID-19 pandemic’s disproportionate impact on communities of color. Although African Americans represent 13.6% of Michigan’s population, during the early stages of the pandemic they represented a startling 40% of all COVID-19 deaths. Gov. Whitmer created the task force to serve in an advisory capacity to the Governor and recommend actions to address these racial disparities and the contributing historic and societal inequalities.  

2/9/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun will provide an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus today, February 9th at 1:30 PM.

LIVE STREAM FOR PUBLIC VIEWING:  

Youtube.com/GovGretchenWhitmer  Facebook.com/GovGretchenWhitmer  Twitter.com/GovWhitmer  

Satellite Coordinates:   

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Satellite coordinates provided by WLNS-TV 6. The satellite window will open at 1:20 PM.  

2/8/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) have announced that the state has secured agreements from nearly all of the state’s health insurers to extend their commitments to waive all out-of-pocket costs for COVID-19 testing, vaccinations, and treatments. These agreements cover more than 92% of the commercial health insurance market in Michigan.

As an extension of previous agreements, consumers with individual and group health plans listed below will not be charged cost-sharing, including copays, deductibles, and coinsurance, for medically appropriate COVID-19-related medical treatment, such as primary care visits, diagnostic testing, emergency room visits, ambulance services, and approved medications and vaccines.

The insurers who have agreed to waive cost-sharing are:
• Aetna (expires February 28, 2021)
• Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Blue Care Network (expires March 31, 2021)
• HAP, Alliance Health (expires March 31, 2021)
• McLaren Health Plan (expires March 31, 2021)
• Meridian Health Plan (expires April 21)
• Molina Healthcare Michigan (expires March 31, 2021)
• Oscar (expires March 31, 2021)
• Physicians Health Plan (PHP) (expires June 30, 2021)
• Priority Health, Priority Health Insurance Co. (expires March 31, 2021)

Federal law requires health insurers to provide no-cost coverage for COVID-19 testing and vaccinations, though not necessarily for COVID-19 treatment, during the federal public health emergency, which is currently set to expire on April 21, 2021. Consumers with Medicaid or Medicare may also receive a no-cost COVID-19 test, vaccination, and related services provided by a health care provider.

Consumers with coverage from an insurer not named in the state agreement, such as Humana, Paramount, or United should contact their insurance company to find out about their coverage before incurring costs.

DIFS can help consumers with health insurance questions and complaints and can provide information about the upcoming Health Insurance Marketplace Special Enrollment Period that will be open from Feb. 15 through May 15. Contact DIFS Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 877-999-6442 or Michigan.gov/HealthInsurance.

2/8/21 – Governor Whitmer COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 1,186,630total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 44,044 being administered on February 4. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment. 

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

  • Joneigh Khaldun visited the drive thru vaccine clinic in Ingham County last week to see firsthand the partnership between the national guard, the local public health departments, and urgent care.  

 https://twitter.com/MDHHS_CME/status/135773074125429145  

 

ICYMI 

  • Over the weekend, Newsweek reported that Michigan’s work to reduce the spread of COVID-19 has worked. This comes after theDetroit Free Press reported that the actions of Governor Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to fight COVID-19 have been successful. In their review, they found that Michigan’s actions have driven down COVID-19 cases and saved lives.  

Newsweek: Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s Strict COVID Orders Effective in Driving Down Cases: Analysis 

https://www.newsweek.com/michigan-gov-gretchen-whitmers-strict-covid-orders-effective-driving-down-cases-analysis-1567389 

BY: EMILY CZACHOR  

As Michigan continues to lift restrictions on businesses and group activities statewide in response to decreasing coronavirus cases, a recent analysis of Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s mitigation orders indicated they were successful in reducing the virus’ spread.  

Last week’s Free Press report indicated that Michigan saw fewer COVID-19 cases per capita than adjacent states—including Wisconsin, Ohio and Indiana—at the height of the winter’s outbreak resurgence, and connected this pattern to Whitmer’s mitigation mandates.  

 

  • MDHHS announced 1,018 cases of COVID-19 from Saturday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 567,648.

  

HAPPENING ACROSS STATE GOVERNMENT 

  • MDHHS announced that approximately 810,000 Michigan children whose access to nutritious school meals has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic will receive $741.6 million in assistance benefits that their families can use to pay for food at stores or online.

“The last thing that families should have to worry about during a pandemic is feeding their children,” Gov. Whitmer said. “I am happy that Michigan families will be able to count on this additional support to help them access nutritious meals during the ongoing pandemic. That’s why it’s so important that the legislature passes the COVID recovery plan I put forward that provides an additional $2.1 billion in food assistance as well as the much-needed support for vaccine distribution, small businesses, and getting our kids back in the classroom safely.” 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

 

2/5/21 – Governor Whitmer COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 1,127,787total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 44,138 being administered on February 3. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment. 

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

 

ICYMI 

  • Yesterday, Governor Whitmer was joined by  Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, and MDHHS Director Elizabeth Hertel to announced that MDHHS updated its current epidemic order to allow contact sports to resume on Monday, Feb. 8, provided masks are worn during practices and competition. If masks cannot be worn, participants must be regularly tested for COVID-19 consistent with guidelines issued by MDHHS. Safety protocols like wearing masks and testing will help keep kids, coaches and families safe and allow our schools to remain open for in-person instruction.  

“We continue to make progress in reducing cases and hospitalizations, helping protect our families and frontline workers and saving lives. Now, starting February 8, contact sports can resume with safety measures in place,” said Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. “Michigan continues to be a national leader in fighting this virus, and we must continue using a fact-based approach so we can return to a strong economy and normal day-to-day activities. One of the most important things Michiganders can do is to make a plan to get the safe and effective vaccine when it’s available to you. And as always, mask up and maintain six feet of social distancing. We all have a personal responsibility to slow the spread of the virus so we can end this pandemic together.”   

  • The governor also signed Executive Order 2021-02, to create the Student Recovery Advisory Council of Michigan yesterday. As Michigan continues to work around the clock to eliminate COVID-19, the Student Recovery Council will provide guidance and recommendations to ensure Michigan students have the tools and resources they need to get back on track.  

“The COVID-19 pandemic has hit Michigan hard, and our students, families, teachers, and school staff have all felt the strain. Still, our educators have worked tirelessly to teach our children during this pandemic under the most stressful conditions, and for that our state is forever indebted to them for their service,” said Governor Whitmer. “It is important to remember that schools also provide other services that students need to succeed including reliable access to the internet, nutritious meals, and mental health supports. COVID-19 has exacerbated inequities in our education system, and we know more work is needed to address the significant impact this pandemic has had on our children. This Council will be integral to ensuring our students and educators are equipped with everything they need to thrive.” 

  • MDHHS announced 1,358cases of COVID-19 from yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 565,251. 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

2/4/21 – The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) updated its current epidemic order to allow contact sports to resume as of Monday, Feb. 8, provided masks are worn during practices and competition. If masks cannot be worn, participants must be regularly tested for COVID-19 consistent with guidelines issued by MDHHS. Safety protocols like wearing masks and testing will help keep kids, coaches and families safe and allow our schools to remain open for in-person instruction. The order remains in effect through Monday, March 29.

To view the PowerPoint presentation that the governor, Chief Medical Executive and MDHHS Chief Deputy for Health Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, and MDHHS Director Elizabeth Hertel used during today’s press conference, click the link: 2.04.2021 PPT.pdf

2/3/21 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer joined members of the Pfizer team for a tour of its global manufacturing campus in Kalamazoo, where it shipped the first doses of its safe, effective and approved COVID-19 vaccine in late December. During the visit, the Governor also learned more about Pfizer’s ongoing efforts to administer its COVID-19 vaccine program and she underscored the administration’s effort to distribute the vaccine quickly, efficiently and equitably to residents across the state.

Since December, the state of Michigan has administered 1,028,286 doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with the number of vaccines administered surpassing the number of recorded cases in the state. In an effort to eliminate COVID-19, the state has developed a comprehensive vaccination strategy centered around vaccinating at least 70 percent of Michiganders age 16 and older as soon as possible. The state plans to administer 50,000 vaccinations per day when there is an adequate supply of vaccine available to do

2/2/21 – Today, the Biden Administration announced additional steps to increase the vaccine supply to states to 10.5 million doses nationwide and provide reimbursement to states for actions to combat COVID-19. The administration has also granted 100 percent retroactive coverage until August 2020 for state National Guard efforts related to COVID-19 response activities. Governor Gretchen Whitmer has been vocal in calling for additional support from the federal government to provide additional support for the Michigan National Guard to continue assisting response efforts throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, Michigan National Guard members have helped distribute nearly 28 million pounds of food at food banks, delivered tests and protective equipment across the state, and conducted more than 215,000 tests for COVID-19.
2/1/21 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced that the State of Michigan has administered over one million safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines, making us 7th in the country in vaccine distribution. The governor called on the Michigan Legislature once again to pass the MI COVID Relief Plan she announced last week. The governor’s plan will appropriate $90 million in federal funding to ramp up vaccine distribution in Michigan and bring the state closer to the governor’s goal of 50,000 shots in arms per day.

In December, Congress appropriated $90 million in additional resources for vaccine distribution in Michigan through the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act. The governor’s plan will use this federal funding to ramp up vaccine distribution in Michigan and bring us closer to our goal of 50,000 shots in arms per day. This funding will help provide financial support to local health departments for vaccine administration costs, including staff augmentation, as well as provide equipment and supplies. Michigan will also receive $575 million to expand COVID testing, tracing, and lab capacity in Michigan.

2/1/21 – Gov. Whitmer COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 909,038 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 38,954 being administered January 28. Every COVID-19 vaccine allocated to Michigan has either been administered or is scheduled to be administered via appointment.

To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     

  • On Friday, the Protect Michigan Commission hosted its first meeting and unveiled Michigan’s COVID-19 Vaccination Strategy. The commission, created by Governor Whitmer is comprised of a diverse group of leaders from across the state. They are charged with helping raise awareness about the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine.  

“The work of the bipartisan Protect Michigan Commission will help Michigan reach its goal of 50,000 shots in arms per day and help ensure all Michiganders have a plan to get their vaccine once it is their turn,” said Governor Whitmer. “The safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine is our way forward out of this pandemic and will allow us to return to a sense of normalcy and a strong Michigan economy.” 

“As we work to ensure that every Michigander who wants a vaccine will get one, the Protect Michigan Commission will play a vital role in reaching out to Michiganders in every part of our state,” Lt. Governor Gilchrist said. “The best thing we can do right now is to work together to ensure that Michiganders, especially those with questions and those hardest hit during the pandemic, have a plan to get vaccinated. Our clearest path to healthy communities, a growing economy, and day-to-day activities free from fear is through the COVID-19 vaccine.” 

The strategy outlines how the commission will move the state towards completing the governor’s goal of getting 70% of Michiganders age 16 and older vaccinated as quickly as possible Below are the guiding principles outlined under the plan: 

  • All Michiganders have equitable access to vaccines.   
  • Vaccine planning and distribution is inclusive and actively engages state and local government, public and private partners; and draws upon the experience and expertise of leaders from historically marginalized populations.   
  • Communications are transparent, accurate, and frequent public communications to build public trust.   
  • Data is used to promote equity, track progress and guide decision making.  
  • Resource stewardship, efficiency, and continuous quality improvement drive strategic implementation.  

 

ICYMI 

  • Research from the University of Michigan hashown that the measures taken by Governor Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Service (MDHHS) to save lives over the holiday’s worked. The “Pause to Save Lives” Epidemic Order has likely prevented more than 100,000 Cases of COVID-19 and as a result, saved 2,800 lives.  

 https://twitter.com/GovWhitmer/status/1354893318262575110 

  •  MDHHS announced 1,358 cases of COVID-19 from Saturday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 559,241.

 

HAPPENING ACROSS STATE GOVERNMENT 

  • The state of Michigan is announced on Friday that they are expanding on the new MI COVID-19 Safer Dining ProgramThe program, directed by the Dept. of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO), will help make restaurants operate more safely – for their workforce, diners, and local communities – and help diners identify restaurants committed to safer operation during the COVID-19 pandemic. Restaurants are encouraged to have their HVAC system inspected to ensure effective ventilation. Proper and efficient HVAC systems or other ventilation changes, along with compliance with MDHHS and MIOSHA orders and guidance, can lower the probability of transmission in indoor settings. 

 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

1/29/21 – The Protect Michigan Commission, comprised of a diverse group of leaders from across the state charged with helping raise awareness about the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine, hosted its first meeting today and unveiled Michigan’s COVID-19 Vaccination Strategy. SEIU 517M Executive Director Jeremy Tripp is a member of the Commission.

During today’s meeting, the commission unveiled the state’s strategy to get 70% of Michiganders age 16 and older vaccinated as quickly as possible. The strategy is being guided by the following guiding principles:
• All Michiganders have equitable access to vaccines.
• Vaccine planning and distribution is inclusive and actively engages state and local government, public and private partners; and draws upon the experience and expertise of leaders from historically marginalized populations.
• Communications are transparent, accurate, and frequent public communications to build public trust.
• Data is used to promote equity, track progress and guide decision making.
• Resource stewardship, efficiency, and continuous quality improvement drive strategic implementation.

The Protect Michigan Commission will work to protect the health and safety of Michigan residents by educating communities about the effectiveness of an approved COVID-19 vaccine to eradicate the spread of the coronavirus.

To achieve this, the bi-partisan commission will develop an outreach strategy to identify and work with communities around the state where there is hesitancy to the vaccine. The commission will complete its work and submit a report to Governor Whitmer by Dec. 31, 2021.

Last month, Congress appropriated $90 million in additional resources for vaccine distribution in Michigan through the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act. Governor Whitmer’s MI COVID Recovery plan will use this federal funding to ramp up vaccine distribution in Michigan and bring us closer to our goal of 50,000 shots in arms per day. This funding will help provide financial support to local health departments for vaccine administration costs, including staff augmentation, as well as provide equipment and supplies. Michigan will also receive $575 million to expand COVID testing, tracing, and lab capacity in Michigan.

1/26/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer released the following statement after President Biden announced his plan to purchase an additional 200 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine to ensure that every American who wants a vaccine can receive one. 

“From his first day in office, President Biden has made it clear that his administration will have a clear national strategy to defeat COVID-19 once and for all,” said Governor Whitmer. “We know that the vaccine is the most effective way to get back to our normal day-to-day activities, which is why it is so good to see the Biden Administration doing everything in their power to get these vaccines to states as quickly as possible. In Michigan, we have a plan to vaccinate 50,000 Michiganders per day, and this additional supply will go a long way to help us reach that goal. I know the administration will continue to take every necessary step to ramp up production of supplies for vaccines, testing, and personal protective equipment. We can accomplish a lot when we have partners in the White House who will work with us, not against us, to get our arms around COVID-19 and build our economy back better than before.” 

 

1/25/21 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, and MDHHS Director Elizabeth Hertel will provide an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus Monday, January 25th at 1:30 PM.

LIVE STREAM FOR PUBLIC VIEWING: Facebook.com/GovGretchenWhitmer 

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1/25/21 – COVID Update from Governor Whitmer

1/22/21 – Following last week’s announcement about the plan to reopen indoor dining, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) released its next epidemic order today, which continues the department’s fact-based approach to reopening activities, and goes into effect on Monday, Feb. 1. The order will allow for indoor dining at restaurants with certain requirements; concessions at casinos, movie theaters and stadiums; personal services requiring mask removal; and non-residential gatherings of up to 10 people from two households. The new order will last three weeks, until Sunday, Feb. 21.  To view Dr. Khaldun’s PowerPoint presentation from today, click the link: 1.22.2021 PPT.pdf

1/22/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun will provide an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus on Friday, January 22 at 9:30 AM.

LIVE STREAM FOR PUBLIC VIEWING:  

twitter.com/GovWhitmer   Facebook.com/GovGretchenWhitmer 

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Satellite coordinates provided by WLNS-TV 6. The satellite window will open at 9:20 AM.

1/21/21 – Today, the governors and lieutenant governors from Michigan Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin joined together to encourage everyone to make a plan for how they can get the safe and effective vaccine once they become eligible.

Over the past ten months people from across the region have stepped up to fight COVID-19. States across the region are working around the clock to ramp up vaccine distribution efforts and end the pandemic once and for all. Together, the governors urged individuals to make a plan for themselves and their families on how they can get vaccinated as soon as possible. People are encouraged to visit their state health departments website for more information.

Participants include:

Michigan: Governor Gretchen Whitmer, Lieutenant Governor Garlin Gilchrist II
Ohio: Governor Mike DeWine, Lieutenant Governor Jon Husted
Indiana: Governor Eric Holcomb, Lieutenant Governor Suzanne Crouch
Illinois: Governor J.B. Pritzker, Lieutenant Governor Juliana Stratton
Kentucky: Governor Andy Beshear, Lieutenant Governor Jacqueline Coleman
Wisconsin: Governor Tony Evers, Lieutenant Governor Mandela Barnes
Minnesota: Governor Tim Walz, Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan

For more information on the COVID-19 vaccine visit www.michigan.gov/COVIDVaccine.

1/21/21 – Governor Whitmer COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 552,713 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 27,002 being administered on January 19. To view the total distribution of vaccines and more vaccine information, visit michigan.gov/covidvaccineto view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.     
  • Today, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services will hold their first town hall to talk with Michigan residents about making an informed decision on how to get vaccinated. To join click visit facebook.com/michiganhhs

https://twitter.com/MichiganHHS/status/1351953465711484930  

ICYMI 

  • MDHHS announced 2,031 cases of COVID-19 from yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 542,146.

 

1/20/21 – Governor Whitmer COVID Update:

VACCINE UPDATE  

  • The state of Michigan has administered 512,906 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, with 21,638 being administered on January 18. To view the total distribution of vaccines andmore vaccine information, visit michigan.gov/covidvaccine to view the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.   
  • Yesterday, Governor Whitmer announced the Michigan COVID Recovery Plan to grow Michigan’s economy and help end the COVID-19 pandemic. The governor’s plan includes a strong focus on vaccine distribution, economic recovery, schools, and more. 

The governor’s plan will use this federal funding to ramp up vaccine distribution in Michigan and bring us closer to our goal of 50,000 shots in arms per day. This funding will help provide financial support to local health departments for vaccine administration costs, including staff augmentation, as well as provide equipment and supplies. Michigan will also receive $575 million to expand COVID testing, tracing, and lab capacity in Michigan.  

  • The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) is sharing a few of the thousands of doses of hope that have been administered to Michiganders across the state. To find out if you are eligible or for further vaccine information visit michigan.gov/covidvaccine

 https://twitter.com/MichiganHHS/status/1351548562673442820  

ICYMI 

MDHHS announced 1,738 cases of COVID-19 from yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 540,115.

 

HAPPENING ACROSS STATE GOVERNMENT 

“We know there have been outbreaks of COVID-19 on college campuses across the country, and it has an impact on disease spread beyond the campus community,” said Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive and chief deputy for health, “Colleges have stepped up throughout this pandemic to slow disease spread through testing and quarantine protocols. With the arrival of the new variant in Michigan and risk of virus spread both on- and off-campus, it is best practice to implement robust testing protocols in these settings. Colleges and universities have an important role to play in ending this pandemic.” 

 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

1/19/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced the Michigan COVID Recovery Plan to grow Michigan’s economy and help end the COVID-19 pandemic. The governor’s plan includes a strong focus on vaccine distribution, economic recovery, schools, and more. See below for more details on the governor’s plan:

— PUBLIC HEALTH —
VACCINE DISTRIBUTION: Michigan is ready to ramp up vaccination distribution, which will help us get back to normal as quickly as possible. Last month, Congress appropriated $90 million in additional resources for vaccine distribution in Michigan through the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act. The governor’s plan will use this federal funding to ramp up vaccine distribution in Michigan and bring us closer to our goal of 50,000 shots in arms per day. This funding will help provide financial support to local health departments for vaccine administration costs, including staff augmentation, as well as provide equipment and supplies. Michigan will also receive $575 million to expand COVID testing, tracing, and lab capacity in Michigan.

— JOBS AND ECONOMY —
SUPPORT FOR SMALL BUSINESS: As part of the governor’s MI COVID Recovery Plan, the governor’s plan provides $225 million for three new programs from the MEDC:
• The Michigan Mainstreet Initiative will help stabilize our small business community by securing grants for restaurants and other place-based businesses to keep our Main Streets vibrant and our communities resilient.
• The Michigan Microenterprise Support Initiative will help us put small businesses with less than nine employees on the path to recovery by creating greater access to much needed support.
• And the Business Accelerator and Resiliency Initiative will provide grants to high-tech startups that can help our communities thrive.

GOOD JOBS FOR MICHIGAN: Governor Whitmer called on the Michigan Legislature to pass Good Jobs for Michigan to help Michigan retain and grow our businesses and create jobs. The Good Jobs for Michigan Program provides Michigan businesses with a crucial tool to create jobs and thrive in our state. Pfizer was the first business to utilize Good Jobs for Michigan, and did so to build their sterile drug manufacturing plant and create 450 good-paying jobs in Portage – the same Portage plant that the first doses of the safe and effective COVID vaccine shipped from at the end of last year. It’s time for the legislature to pass this bill and send it to the governor’s desk.

UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS: The governor’s MI COVID Recovery Plan includes a call on the Michigan Legislature to permanently extend unemployment benefits from 20 weeks to 26 weeks. This would bring Michigan in line with 40 other states and provide hard-hit Michigan workers with the financial security and peace of mind they need and deserve.

FOOD ASSISTANCE: As of fiscal year 2019, one in eight Michigan residents received food assistance. Governor Whitmer’s Michigan COVID Recovery Plan will provide more support for families through food assistance so more Michiganders can afford to put food on the table for themselves and their families.

RENTAL ASSISTANCE: The federal Emergency Rental Assistance Program, established in the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2201, will provide the State of Michigan with funding to assist households that are unable to pay rent and utilities due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The governor’s plan will allocate this federal funding to help more Michiganders stay in their homes.

OFFICE OF RURAL DEVELOPMENT: The governor will create an Office of Rural Development tasked with coordinating work across state government to address issues facing rural communities—including broadband, talent, infrastructure, and more. The MI COVID Relief Plan will also include grants to provide infrastructure and capacity support in rural communities and support for land-based industries.

PROPERTY TAX ASSISTANCE: The governor’s plan includes funding to waive penalties and interest for certain property owners who did not pay their summer 2020 property taxes on time as a result of economic hardship created by the COVID-19 pandemic .

TALENT: The governor’s plan will provide targeted employment and training services through the Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity to connect unemployed and underemployed Michigan residents with training and resources necessary for gainful employment. The program will prioritize residents from underserved or economically distressed communities to provide them with the skills needed for entry into registered apprenticeships in the energy sector to help drive Michigan’s energy transition.

RECONNECT/FUTURES FOR FRONTLINERS WRAPAROUD SUPPORTS: The governor’s plan includes a pilot providing wrap-around supports for up to 400 single parents who participate in the Michigan Reconnect and Futures for Frontliners programs. Participants will receive on-campus childcare, intensive personalized advisement, educational supports including tutoring, career counseling and assistance in transitioning to a 4-year school.

— EDUCATION —
SCHOOLS: As part of the recent actions from the federal government, Michigan was allocated nearly $1.7 billion through the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER Fund). The governor’s MI COVID Recovery Plan will allocate this federal funding, along with an additional $300M in state dollars, to help schools meet the Governor’s goal of providing every student with an in-person learning opportunity by March 1, and to help address the learning loss that has occurred due to the pandemic. These one-time, flexible dollars will be distributed through a formula that recognizes the additional costs associated with supporting students in poverty and students with special education needs.

1/19/21 – Governor Whitmer to Hold Virtual Press Conference to Talk About Michigan’s Economy. Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer will be joined by State Budget Director David Massaron and State Treasurer Rachel Eubanks to talk about Michigan’s economy and getting Michigan back on track by defeating COVID-19 on Tuesday, January 19th at 2:00 PM.

LIVE STREAM: The event will be livestreamed for public viewing on the governor’s YouTube page: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCTMbahTiYg0uyEkQVMZFByQ

1/14/21 – Gov. Whitmer COVID Update

  • Yesterday, Governor Whitmer was joined by Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, MDHHS Director Robert Gordon, and Michigan’s Chief Operating Officer Tricia Foster to announced the updated epidemic order that will allow the re-opening of additional activities where Michiganders can remain masked and socially distanced, as this has been scientifically shown to slow the virus. This includes indoor group exercise and non-contact sports. The new order is effective Saturday, Jan. 16 and will last until Sunday, Jan. 31.    

Governor Whitmer also highlighted the work Michigan has done to provide relief to Michiganders affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. She announced employee assistance grants that will put dollars in the pockets of Michiganders who work in hospitality, entertainment, recreation, accommodation and food services sectors — as well as the gym and fitness sectors, and she talked about the $58.5 million in additional COVID-19 support for small businesses that will likely be approved by the Michigan Strategic Fund Board today.  

  •  MDHHS announced 2,694 cases of COVID-19 from yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 528,306.

MEDIA COVERAGE 

 

1/13/21 – New MDHHS Epidemic Order

1/13/21 – Gov. Whitmer COVID Update:

After Governor Whitmer led a multistate effort last week asking the Trump Administration to release millions of doses of the covid-19 vaccine they are currently holding back, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that they will grant their request. HHS also announced that they will follow Michigan’s lead, recommending that states open up vaccinations to Americans age 65 and up, a move that Governor Whitmer announced last week.

https://twitter.com/GovWhitmer/status/1349046518548987906

 

  • Yesterday, Lt. Governor Gilchrist joined fellow chair of the Protect Michigan Commission Blake Griffin to talk about vaccinations in Michigan. This week, the state moved into a new phase of vaccinations by making more people eligible to get a vaccine.

https://twitter.com/LtGovGilchrist/status/1349111660439605252

 

  • The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) announced 1,994 cases of COVID-19 from yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 525,612.

 

HAPPENING ACROSS STATE GOVERNMENT

  • The Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity is reminding businesses that they can use the free MI Symptoms app to help screen for COVID-19 symptoms and help stop the spread of the virus.

https://twitter.com/MichiganLEO/status/1349098448621068288

  • The Department of Insurance and Financial Services is doing their part to remind Michiganders to choose the right face mask to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.

https://twitter.com/MIDIFS/status/1348993476634030080

 

MEDIA COVERAGE

1/13/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, MDHHS Director Robert Gordon, and Michigan’s Chief Operating Officer Tricia Foster will provide an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus on Wednesday, January 13th at 12:00 PM.

LIVE STREAM FOR PUBLIC VIEWING:  twitter.com/GovWhitmer     Facebook.com/GovGretchenWhitmer 

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The satellite window will open at 11:50 AM.

1/12/21 – Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that they will grant Governor Whitmer and eight other governors’ request and release the millions of doses of the safe, effective COVID-19 vaccine currently being held back by the Trump Administration. HHS also announced that they will follow Michigan’s lead, recommending that states open up vaccinations to Americans age 65 and up, a move that Governor Whitmer announced last week.

Last week, Governors Gretchen Whitmer, Gavin Newsom (CA), Laura Kelly (KS), J.B. Pritzker (IL), Tim Walz (MN), Andrew Cuomo (NY), Tony Evers (WI), Jay Inslee (WA), and Kate Brown (OR) sent a letter to Secretary Azar and General Perna requesting that the federal government distribute the millions of safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine doses that are currently being held back by the Trump Administration. According to publicly reported information, the federal government currently has upwards of 50% of currently produced vaccines held back by the administration for reasons unknown. After the governors sent the letter, the incoming Biden administration announced that they will release all of the available vaccine doses that the Trump Administration is holding back.

On Monday, Michigan entered a new phase of vaccine distribution, and began offering vaccine to Michiganders age 65 and older; frontline essential workers including police officers, first responders, frontline state and federal workers and jail and prison staff; and pre K-12 educators, support staff, and childcare providers.

To learn more about Michigan’s COVID-19 vaccine distribution efforts, visit Michigan.gov/COVIDvaccine.

1/11/21 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer sent a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar requesting permission to directly purchase up to 100,000 doses of the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines for the State of Michigan. Governor Whitmer also noted that since she and eight other governors sent a letter to the Trump Administration requesting that they distribute the millions of safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine doses that are currently being held back, she has not received a response.

Governor Whitmer has been working around the clock with leaders in state government and local health departments to cement Michigan’s status as a nationwide leader in vaccine distribution. On Wednesday, the CDC released new data that shows Michigan is in the top 15 states when it comes to vaccine distribution.

Last week, Governors Gretchen Whitmer, Gavin Newsom (CA), Laura Kelly (KS), J.B. Pritzker (IL), Tim Walz (MN), Andrew Cuomo (NY), Tony Evers (WI), Jay Inslee (WA), and Kate Brown (OR) sent a letter to Secretary Azar and General Perna requesting that the federal government distribute the millions of safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine doses that are currently being held back by the Trump Administration. According to publicly reported information, the federal government currently has upwards of 50% of currently produced vaccines held back by the administration for reasons unknown. After the governors sent the letter, the incoming Biden administration announced that they will release all of the available vaccine doses that the Trump Administration is holding back.

To view the full letter to Secretary Azar, click the link below: Letter, Gov. Whitmer to Sec. Azar (1.11.21).pdf

1/11/21 – Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s Food Security Council is making several recommendations to ensure Michigan families have access to nutritious food during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The council, which is within the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) is making recommendations in the three areas of:
• Addressing food needs faced by Michigan residents. Included are recommendations to require the state to swiftly pursue existing federal food program services and seek flexibility; develop approaches for food distribution such as home delivery; and provide incentives for additional retailers to accept online payment from people who receive food assistance benefits.
• Collaborating with partners and improving the infrastructure for food and nutrition programs. Included are recommendations to continue partnerships with food banks, State Emergency Operations Center personnel, the Michigan National Guard and other organizations responsible for food and nutrition programs and services; develop a process for communities to create local emergency response plans with their county emergency managers; and develop data-sharing and technology procedures to identify food needs for clients and track the total food distribution across agencies.
• Ensuring an adequate food supply in Michigan. While ample food has existed in the supply chain during the pandemic, recommendations include developing a communications strategy to address “panic buying;” prioritizing food workers along the supply chain for personal protective equipment and workplace safety materials; and creating a statewide program that engages restaurants and their workers to distribute prepared meals to vulnerable populations.

Gov. Whitmer created the council in August and appointed Dr. Phil Knight of the Food Bank Council of Michigan to be its chair. She required an initial report with short-term findings and recommendations to be completed this month and a final report to be submitted within 18 months. The council consists of the directors of the state departments of Health and Human Services, Agriculture and Rural Development, and Labor and Economic Opportunity, and the superintendent of public instruction, or their designees, as well as 16 other appointees.

The council is part of the governor’s ongoing efforts to improve food security in Michigan. Previously, she gained approval of increased monthly food assistance benefits for approximately 350,000 families. In April, Michigan became the first state to gain federal approval for the Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer Program. The program, which reached nearly 968,000 students, provided nutritious food to children who were affected by school closings due to COVID-19.

In late May, MDHHS started an initiative that allows SNAP clients to buy their food online from participating retailers using their Electronic Benefits Transaction cards – known in Michigan as Bridge Cards. Amazon.com, Walmart.com and www.aldi.us participate in the online purchasing program.

MDHHS is working to implement parts of the Coronavirus Relief Act signed in December – including a 15 percent increase in food assistance payments. The department is also rolling out the Restaurant Meal Program. Restaurants can enroll now, and MDHHS will announce at a later date when eligible food assistant recipients can start redeeming their benefits at participating restaurants.

1/11/21 – Gov. Whitmer COVID Update:

  • On Friday, Governor Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) announced new guidance to keep students, staff and communities safe during the COVID-19 pandemic while providing the in-person instruction that is crucial to learning and development. The state’s goal is to have all Michigan school districts offer an in-person learning option for students no later than March 1, and earlier if possible.
  • MDHHS announced 2,706cases of COVID-19 from Saturday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 519,082. 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

1/8/21 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun will provide an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus on Friday, January 8th at 1:30 PM.

LIVE STREAM FOR PUBLIC VIEWING:  twitter.com/GovWhitmer   Facebook.com/GovGretchenWhitmer 

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1/7/21 – Today, Governors Gretchen Whitmer, Gavin Newsom (CA), Laura Kelly (KS), J.B. Pritzker (IL), Tim Walz (MN), Andrew Cuomo (NY), Tony Evers (WI), and Jay Inslee (WA) sent a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and Operation Warp Speed Chief Operating Officer General Gustave Perna requesting that the federal government distribute the millions of safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine doses that are currently being held back by the Trump Administration. According to publicly reported information, the federal government currently has upwards of 50% of currently produced vaccines held back by the administration for reasons unknown.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, led by Chief Medical Executive and MDHHS Chief Deputy for Health Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, has been working around the clock with health systems and local health departments across the state to distribute the vaccine to Michiganders. If the federal government releases the vaccines that are being held back, Governor Whitmer’s administration has developed a plan to get 50,000 vaccines in Michiganders’ arms each day. The state began distributing the vaccine to frontline health workers and skilled nursing home residents and staff in December. To date, the state has administered more than 150,000 doses of the vaccine.

Yesterday, Governor Whitmer’s administration announced that Michigan is entering a new phase of vaccine distribution. On January 11th, the state will begin offering vaccine to Michiganders age 65 and older; frontline essential workers including police officers, first responders, frontline state and federal workers and jail and prison staff; and preK-12 educators, support staff, and childcare providers.

To learn more about Michigan’s COVID-19 distribution, please visit Michigan.gov/COVIDvaccine. Letter to the Federal Government 1.7.21.pdf

1/6/21 – To help reach the state’s goal of vaccinating 70% of Michiganders over age 16 and bring a quicker end to the COVID-19 pandemic in Michigan, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) officials today announced the state is moving to a new phase of vaccination on Monday, Jan. 11.

MDHHS is moving forward with vaccination of Michiganders age 65 and older; frontline essential workers including police officers, first responders, frontline state and federal workers and jail and prison staff; and preK-12 teachers and childcare providers. To date, 80% of deaths have occurred among those age 65 and older. In addition to vaccinating Michiganders who are 75+ in Phase 1B (Phase 1B, Group A), MDHHS is accelerating to vaccinate individuals 65-74 years old (Phase 1C Group A). MDHHS is accelerating implementation of vaccination of individuals 65-74 years due to concern around disparity in life expectancy by race/ethnicity for this group (Phase 1C, Group A).

All counties may begin vaccinating residents over age 65 and seniors are urged to visit Michigan.gov/COVIDVaccine to find local health departments and other local vaccine clinics near them that are ready to book appointments. Eligible essential workers, teachers and childcare workers will be notified by their employers about vaccine clinic dates and locations. Eligible individuals should not go to any of the clinics without an appointment.

It is important to note that there is limited vaccine available in the state, and so there will be limited appointments available. As more vaccine becomes available, the state will be able to move more quickly through the priority groups.

MDHHS is following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations for prioritization of distribution and administration of COVID-19 vaccines. CDC recommendations are based on input from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), the federal advisory committee made up of medical and public health experts who develop recommendations on the use of vaccines in the United States.

Phases are as follows:

  • Phase 1A: Paid and unpaid persons serving in healthcare settings who have the potential for direct or indirect exposure to patients or infectious materials and are unable to work from home as well as residents in long term care facilities.
  • Phase 1B: Persons 75 years of age or older and frontline essential workers in critical infrastructure.
  • Phase 1C: Individuals 16 years of age or older at high risk of severe illness due to COVID-19 infection and some other essential workers whose position impacts life, safety and protection during the COVID-19 response.
  • Phase 2: Individuals 16 years of age or older.

These prioritizations may change as more information on vaccine effectiveness and additional vaccination products become available. MDHHS has provided additional prioritization guidance within these categories. It is important to note that vaccination in one phase may not be complete before vaccination in another phase begins. There may be vaccination of individuals in different phases that occur simultaneously. The timing of the start of vaccination in a phase is dependent on the supply of vaccine from the manufacturer, how vaccine is allocated from the federal level to Michigan and the capacity to administer the vaccine to populations. Decisions on moving to the next phase will be made at the state level.

More than 140,000 of Moderna and Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine have been administered to health care workers with more than 8,000 of those doses going to nursing home residents and staff. This data is being tracked on the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard, which also includes information on the number of providers enrolled to provide the vaccine and vaccination coverage rates by age and race.

Even with COVID-19 vaccinations starting in Michigan and worldwide, Khaldun urges everyone to continue to practice preventative measures such as properly wearing masks, social distancing and frequent handwashing to reduce the spread of the virus until the vast majority of people have been vaccinated.

There will be no out-of-pocket costs to individuals for the vaccine, however, healthcare providers may bill insurance for administrative costs. The COVID-19 vaccine will require two doses, separated by three or four weeks depending on the manufacturer. Michiganders should receive both doses in order to have full protection from the virus. Individuals who receive the vaccine may experience mild side effects such as low-grade fever, sore arm and general discomfort, which indicate that the vaccine is working. There is a robust state and national process for tracking vaccines and reporting side effects.

Michigan residents seeking more information about the COVID-19 vaccine can visit Michigan.gov/COVIDvaccine. As additional information and resources become available, it will be posted to this site.

Information around this outbreak is changing rapidly. The latest information is available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus

1/6/21 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun will provide an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus on Wednesday, January 6th at 1:30 PM.

LIVE STREAM FOR PUBLIC VIEWING: 

twitter.com/GovWhitmer    Facebook.com/GovGretchenWhitmer 

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The satellite window will open at 1:20 PM.

1/4/21 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer released the following statement after the State of Michigan recorded its 500,000th confirmed case of COVID-19:

“Since the first cases of COVID-19 were recorded in Michigan, the vast majority of Michiganders have done their part to protect themselves, their families, and our frontline workers and small business owners. Now, there is hope on the horizon. My administration, led by Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, has been working with local health officials and health care providers to begin distributing the safe and effective vaccine, starting with our most vulnerable populations like health care workers and skilled nursing home residents and staff. We must remember that it will take some time for the vaccine to be widely available to all Michiganders, and until then, we must continue to do our part to keep ourselves and our fellow Michiganders safe. That means masking up, practicing safe social distancing, and avoiding indoor gatherings where the virus can easily spread from person to person. ”

12/30/20 – Gov. Whitmer COVID Update

  • Yesterday, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed the bipartisan relief bill that the Michigan legislature passed after she urged them to provide support for Michigan families, frontline workers, and small businesses. The relief bill includes $55 million to help small businesses impacted by COVID-19. Grants of up to $20,000 will be made available to small businesses across the state that need support this winter. The relief bill also includes $3.5 million for grants of up to $40,000 each for live music and entertainment venues, and includes $45 million in direct payments to workers who have been laid off or furloughed as a result of the virus.  

“I proposed this stimulus plan to the legislature in November because I know how much our families, frontline workers, and small businesses need relief. This bipartisan bill will provide families and businesses the support they need to stay afloat as we continue working to distribute the safe and effective vaccine and eliminate COVID-19 once and for all,” said Governor Whitmer. “There is still more work to do to eliminate this virus and grow our economy. All Michiganders have a personal responsibility to do their part and mask up, practice safe social distancing, and avoid indoor gatherings where the virus can easily spread from person to person. We will beat this virus together.”  

  • The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) announced 3,414 cases of COVID-19 from yesterday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 483,922.

 HAPPENING ACROSS STATE GOVERNMENT 

 The state of Michigan continues to remind Michiganders to mask up and do their part to slow the spread of COVID-19 to protect their families, neighbors, and frontline workers. 

 https://twitter.com/migov/status/1344011789978247170 

 MEDIA COVERAGE  

 

12/29/20 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed the bipartisan relief bill that the Michigan legislature passed after she urged them to provide support for Michigan families, frontline workers, and small businesses. The relief bill includes $55 million to help small businesses impacted by COVID-19. Grants of up to $20,000 will be made available to small businesses across the state that need support this winter. The relief bill also includes $3.5 million for grants of up to $40,000 each for live music and entertainment venues, and includes $45 million in direct payments to workers who have been laid off or furloughed as a result of the virus.

The governor also signed bipartisan Senate Bill 604 extending unemployment benefits for Michiganders who have lost work as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic from 20 to 26 weeks until the end of March 2021. Senate Bill 604 was sponsored by Senator Curtis Hertel.

From the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Whitmer and her administration have worked around the clock to ensure benefits for Michiganders who have lost work because of the virus. Since March 15, Governor Whitmer’s administration has paid nearly $27 billion in benefits to nearly 2.3 million workers.

When she signed the bipartisan relief bill, Governor Whitmer line item vetoed any items not subject to negotiated agreement. That includes a $220 million giveaway of taxpayer money to the employer-owned Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund – a pool of funds designed to help businesses fund benefits for laid off workers. General fund dollars must be used to fund essential services like vaccines and PPE, not to give tax breaks to big businesses. The Unemployment Insurance Agency has also provided more than $900 million in tax breaks to businesses impacted by COVID-19. Today, the governor urged the legislature to return to work in January and pass a permanent extension of unemployment benefits and an increase in weekly benefits that provide unemployed Michiganders the support they need to put food on the table for themselves and their families.

On Sunday, the President signed a COVID relief bill that provides some support for Michigan’s unemployed workers. This bill extends benefits to self-employed and gig workers and provides all unemployment recipients with an additional $300 per week. This extension will bring relief to nearly 700,000 Michigan workers who are currently receiving benefits under the federal UI programs. The continuation of these benefits coupled with the additional $300 per week for all claimants will provide our workers with the emergency financial assistance to buy essential items like groceries and prescription drugs.

To view the governor’s signing message to the legislature, click the link: SB 748 Signing Letter.pdf

12/29/20 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun will provide an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus today, December 29th at 11:30 AM.

LIVE STREAM FOR PUBLIC VIEWING:  

twitter.com/GovWhitmer   

Facebook.com/GovGretchenWhitmer 

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The satellite window will open at 11:20 AM.

12/28/20 – Emergency Relief Package Extends Federal Unemployment Benefit Programs – Existing PUA and PEUC claimants will experience delayed certifications and payments until implementation

LANSING, Mich.—COVID-19 emergency relief package has been signed into law that continues and expands federal unemployment insurance (UI) programs.

Due to the timing of the legislation’s finalization, there will be a delay in certification and payment of benefits for those currently enrolled in the federal PUA and PEUC programs beginning Dec. 26. This will only be a disruption and claimants will be made whole once the extensions are fully implemented.

Existing PUA and PEUC claimants should ensure they complete any outstanding certifications through Dec. 26. To do this, log in to you MiWAM account and click on the inactive PUA or PEUC claim. Outstanding certifications will appear under the “Alerts” tab should there be any to be completed.

Michigan, like all states, must wait until guidance is issued by the U.S. Dept. of Labor before it can begin processing the benefits provided under the new legislation. This guidance will include new rules and instructions that will require updates to the state’s UI system, but rest assured that Michigan’s Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) is making program adjustments with what information is available and will work tirelessly to implement any remaining changes as soon as it can in order to get benefits out the door as quickly as possible.

Claimants do not need to contact the UIA regarding these changes at this time.

UI extensions and expansions include:

  • Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA): Extends and phases out PUA, a temporary federal program covering self-employed and gig workers, to March 14 (after which no new applicants) through April 5, 2021.
    • Provides additional weeks for those who would otherwise exhaust benefits by extending PUA from 39 to 50 weeks— with all benefits ending April 5, 2021.
    • New PUA program eligibility requirements: New and active claimants must provide documentation to substantiate employment (not just self-certification as is currently the case) starting at the end of January.
  • Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (PUC): Provides all unemployment recipients with an additional $300 per week from Dec. 27 through Mar. 13, 2021.
  • Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC): Extends and phases out PEUC, which provides additional weeks when state unemployment runs out, to March 14 (after which no new applications) through April 5, 2021.
    • Provides additional weeks for those who would otherwise exhaust benefits by increasing weeks available from 13 to 24—with all benefits ending April 5, 2021.

“This federal extension will bring much needed relief to nearly 700,000 Michigan workers who are currently receiving benefits under the PUA and PEUC programs,” said Liza Estlund Olson, acting director of the Unemployment Insurance Agency. “The continuation of these benefits coupled with the additional $300 in weekly payments for all claimants will provide our workers with the emergency financial assistance to buy essential items like groceries and prescription drugs.”

The relief package also includes:
• Extension of 100% federal financing for the use of the WorkShare program
• Extension of Emergency Unemployment Relief for Governmental Entities and Nonprofit Organizations through Mar. 14

Visit the UIA website at Michigan.gov/uia for more information as it becomes available.

12/22/20 – Today, Governor Whitmer signed Senate Bills 241 and 1246 into law.

Senate Bill 241, creating the Water Shutoff Restoration Act, promotes access to clean water and protects Michiganders from the spread of COVID-19 by ensuring that every occupied residence has access to clean running water so that they can regularly hand-wash consistent with CDC guidance. The bill prohibits water shutoffs due to nonpayment and mandates that water services be restored to residences where shutoffs have occurred, in most circumstances, through March 31, 2021. This bill was sponsored by Senator Stephanie Chang, D-Detroit.

Senate Bill 1246 amends the Open Meetings Act to allow public bodies to meet electronically and remain in compliance. It also extends current remote attendance provisions to March 31, 2021. Once public bodies are again able to meet in-person, the bill requires compliance with social distancing and cleaning guidelines if they chose to hold in-person meetings. This bill was sponsored by Senator Lana Theis, R-Brighton.

12/22/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced that her administration will take a number of actions to provide support for Michigan’s families, restaurants, and small businesses. The Whitmer Administration will implement another liquor buyback program for restaurants and bars similar to the one administered earlier this year, as well as partner with Michigan restaurants to allow SNAP benefits for prepared meals. The administration also announced another $2 million for the Eviction Diversion Program to ensure that Michigan families can keep a roof over their head this winter.

Governor Whitmer’s Restaurant Meal Program will give eligible food assistance recipients the opportunity to use their benefits to purchase restaurant meals. Older adults over 60, people with a disability including those who receive Social Security Income (SSI) or other disability program benefits, and people experiencing homelessness are among those who are eligible. MDHHS is opening the program for restaurants to enroll with the aim of providing diverse and affordable options for eligible participants across the state. Restaurants interested in partnering with MDHHS in this program are asked to visit the MDHHS website, where they can learn more about program requirements and how to enroll.

As part of the spirits buyback program announced earlier this year, The Michigan Liquor Control Commission bought back almost $3.4 million in spirits from 673 on-premises liquor licensees, providing an average $5,000 in financial relief for bar and restaurant owners during the pandemic. Governor Whitmer’s administration will take similar action this winter to provide crucial support for Michigan’s bars and restaurants.

The Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) Eviction Diversion Program (EDP) is designed to keep Michigan residents who fell behind on their rent during COVID-19 in their homes. So far, the program has helped an estimated 16,000 people stay in their homes. The program was initiated and funded from Senate Bill 690, which appropriated $880 million in federal dollars from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The Senate bills called for $60 million to be set aside to establish a rental assistance program – of which $50 million has been dedicated to keeping renters in their homes with the remaining $10 million covering case management, legal, and administrative costs. The Whitmer administration will continue to assist renters with this program and other complementary programs until additional federal eviction resources arrive through the federal stimulus that passed yesterday.

Governor Whitmer’s announcement comes one day after the Michigan Legislature passed her stimulus plan, which includes $55 million to help small businesses impacted by COVID-19. Grants of up to $20,000 will be made available to small businesses across the state that need support this winter. The relief bill also includes $3.5 million for grants of up to $40,000 each for live music and entertainment venues, and includes $45 million in direct payments to workers who have been laid off or furloughed as a result of the virus, with a direct focus on restaurant and hospitality workers.

12/21/20 – Federal COVID relief has been passed by Congress and is headed to the President for his signature. It includes, according to a CNN summary:

  • Direct payment checks of up to $600 per adult and child
  • Aid for small businesses, including more than $284 billion for forgivable Paycheck Protection Program loans and $15 billion “in dedicated funding for live venues, independent movie theaters, and cultural institutions”
  • $300 per week for enhanced unemployment insurance benefits
  • $20 billion to buy vaccines and make “the vaccine available at no charge for anyone who needs it” and $8 billion for vaccine distribution
  • $20 billion for coronavirus testing efforts
  • $25 billion for rental assistance and an eviction moratorium extension
  • $82 billion for education providers like schools and colleges, including aid to help reopen classrooms safely and $10 billion for child care assistance
  • The deal will rescind “$429 billion in unused funds provided by the CARES Act for the Federal Reserve’s emergency lending facilities”
  • $13 billion in increased Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and child nutrition benefits
  • $7 billion to bolster broadband access to help Americans connect remotely during the pandemic
  • $45 billion to support transportation services, including $2 billion for airports, $1 billion for Amtrak and $16 billion for “another round of airline employee and contractor payroll support”
  • A tax credit “to support employers offering paid sick leave”

12/21/20 – Today the Michigan Legislature passed the governor’s proposed $100 million relief bill.  The bill includes the following:

  • $55 million to help small businesses impacted by COVID-19. Grants of up to $20,000 will be made available to small businesses across the state that need support this winter.
  • $3.5 million for grants of up to $40,000 each for live music and entertainment venues.
  • $45 million in direct payments to workers who have been laid off or furloughed as a result of the virus, with a direct focus on restaurant and hospitality workers.

12/21/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer released the following statement after the Michigan Legislature passed her stimulus plan, which includes $55 million to help small businesses impacted by COVID-19. Grants of up to $20,000 will be made available to small businesses across the state that need support this winter. The relief bill also includes $3.5 million for grants of up to $40,000 each for live music and entertainment venues, and includes $45 million in direct payments to workers who have been laid off or furloughed as a result of the virus, with a direct focus on restaurant and hospitality workers.

12/18/20 – The governor announced that MDHHS has updated its epidemic order today to allow indoor activities where Michiganders can remain masked, as this has been scientifically shown to slow the virus. This includes in-person learning at high schools and indoor entertainment venues. Casinos, bowling centers and movie theatres will be allowed to reopen with total capacity capped at 100; food and drink concessions closed; and social distancing requirements in place. The new order is effective Monday, Dec. 21 and will last until Friday, Jan. 15.

  • Indoor residential gatherings remain limited to 10 people and two households. MDHHS continues to urge families to avoid indoor gatherings or to pick a single other household to interact with consistent with guidance already released by the department. Families are encouraged to stay home this holiday season to maintain the positive momentum that has developed and to protect loved ones. Families are also encouraged to Mask Up, Mask Right, using new guidance for what masks to wear and how to wear them.
  • The epidemic order continues to temporarily pause indoor dining in bars and restaurants, but they can continue to offer outdoor dining, carry-out, and delivery. Colleges and universities will be able to have students return to campus for the winter semester, with a voluntary commitment to wait until Jan. 18 to restart in-person courses.
  • Gyms remain open for individual exercise with strict safety measures in place. Outdoor group fitness and outdoor non-contact sports will again be allowed, including running, downhill and cross-country skiing.
  • Under this new order, reopened indoor entertainment venues will not be required to collect names and contact information. With the amount of community spread that currently exists across the state and the heavy burden on contact tracing teams to keep up with these cases, it has become too challenging to meaningfully use this data for timely follow up. As case counts fall and contact tracing becomes able to keep up with the volume again, MDHHS expects to reinstate this information-gathering requirement.
  • As before, employees who work in jobs that cannot be performed from home can continue to go to work, while employees who can work from home should continue to do so. Individualized activities with distancing and face masks are still allowed: retail shopping; public transit; restaurant takeout; personal-care services such as haircuts, by appointment; and individualized exercise at a gym, with extra spacing between machines.

Information around this outbreak is changing rapidly. The latest information is available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus. To learn more about the COVID-19 vaccine, visit Michigan.gov/COVIDVaccine.

Helpful Links:

 

12/18/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, and MDHHS Director Robert Gordon will provide an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus on Friday, December 18th at 1:30 PM.

LIVE STREAM FOR PUBLIC VIEWING:

twitter.com/GovWhitmer 

Facebook.com/GovGretchenWhitmer 

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Satellite coordinates provided by WLNS-TV 6. The satellite window will open at 1:20 PM.

12/18/20 – Governor Whitmer COVID Update:

  • The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) announced 4,024 cases of COVID-19 from both Sunday and Monday. This brings the total number of positive cases of COVID-19 to 450,776.

HAPPENING ACROSS STATE GOVERNMENT 

  • A month after its statewide launch, the MI COVID Alert app has reached nearly 500,000 downloads. MDHHS and the Michigan Department of Technology, Management & Budget (DTMB) announced there have been 461,192 downloads of MI COVID Alert. The state also rolled out a second option for users to receive the PIN required to anonymously share a positive COVID-19 test result.  

“So much about fighting COVID is hard, but this is easy: Please download MI COVID Alert on your phone,” said Robert Gordon, director of MDHHS. “It protects your privacy, and it will help protect us all. If we hit even a million downloads by January 2021, we’ll be safer until a vaccine is available to the broader population.” 

Even when just 15% of a population used an exposure notification app like MI COVID Alert, researchers from Oxford University found a potential to reduce infections and deaths. Already, nearly 9% of Michigan residents ages 18 to 64 have downloaded MI COVID Alert.  When a person tests positive for COVID-19, they are eligible to receive a randomly generated PIN. This PIN allows people to share test results anonymously in MI COVID Alert. 

 MDHHS also announced that 350,000 Michigan families will continue to have access to additional food assistance benefits during December as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“No Michigander should have to worry about how they’ll put food on the table for themselves and their families, especially during a pandemic,” Gov. Whitmer said. “That’s why my administration is working hard to provide some support to families who need it most. I will continue working with MDHHS to help every Michigander get through this crisis.” 

  • The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development awarded Value Added and Regional Food System grants to nine Michigan producers, processors, and community development organizations. The grants are designed to help retain, expand, attract, or develop agricultural processing in Michigan through targeted investments in technology and equipment, feasibility studies, healthy food access, regional food systems, and urban agriculture.

“When you look at these projects individually, the grants will help one operation with new equipment, expand processing capacity for others, and bring nutritious products to a local food desert,” said MDARD Director Gary McDowell. “Collectively over time, however, these grant projects strengthen our state’s food supply chain. Making targeted investments in businesses and community organizations ultimately helps diversify, expand, and improve Michigan’s entire food and agriculture industry.” 

MEDIA COVERAGE 

 

12/15/20 – Today at 1:30 PM, Governor Gretchen Whitmer, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, and Attorney General Dana Nessel will provide an update regarding COVID-19 and the continued efforts to slow the spread of the virus around. They will also speak about safety surrounding the holidays.

LIVE STREAM:
twitter.com/GovWhitmer
Facebook.com/GovGretchenWhitmer

Satellite Coordinates:
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CBS Parameters:
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1080i
Satellite coordinates provided by WLNS-TV 6
The satellite window will open at 1:20 PM.

12/11/20 – Today, MDHHS provided an update on COVID-19 vaccination plans for Michigan including priority groups, vaccine development, the safety process, and more.

A  livestream of the event began at 3:15 pm and can be found at:  Facebook.com/michiganhhs. (The press briefing will be recorded and be shared on the DHHS website and via social media.)

  • Yesterday Governor Whitmer announced the creation of the bipartisan Protect Michigan Commission to help educate Michiganders about an approved vaccine. Interested candidates can apply for the commission by clicking here and selecting “Protect Michigan Commission” from the drop menu of the application. The deadline to apply is December 28th.

12/11/20 – Michigan’s small businesses that have been disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 virus will be able to apply for grants of up to $15,000 through the Pure Michigan Small Business Relief Initiative beginning at 9:00 a.m. EST on Tuesday, December 15, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation announced today. The program will utilize $10 million in federal U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) CARES Act funding to provide economic assistance to small businesses across Michigan.

Grants will be awarded in the amount of up to $15,000 per eligible business on a “first-in” basis. Information on how to apply – including application questions and instructions and a video tutorial on the application process – as well as eligibility criteria and program guidelines are available at www.michiganbusiness.org/relief.

12/11/20 – Today, Dr. Joneigh Khaldun and director of MDHHS’s division of immunization Bob Swanson will provide an update on COVID-19 vaccination plans at 12:15 pm. A livestream for public viewing will be available at Facebook.com/michiganhhs

12/10/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-193 creating the bipartisan Protect Michigan Commission within the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) to help raise awareness of the safety and effectiveness of an approved COVID-19 vaccine, educate the people of this state, and help protect the health and safety of all Michigan residents.

The Commission will be chaired by: Lieutenant Governor Garlin Gilchrist II; Former Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley; Chief Medical Executive and DHHS Chief Deputy for Health Dr. Joneigh Khaldun; Detroit Pistons player Blake Griffin; Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha, MD, MPH, FAAP, Associate Professor of Pediatrics and C.S. Mott Endowed Professor of Public Health; SER Metro CEO Eva Dewaelsche; Soumit Pendharkar, MHA, FACHE, Health Administrator for the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians; Spectrum Health President & CEO Tina Freese-Decker; and Jamie Brown, Registered Nurse and President of the Michigan Nurses Association. The commission will consist of at least 50 members that will represent the great diversity of our state.

The Protect Michigan Commission will serve in an advisory capacity to Governor Whitmer and DHHS, and will, among other things, provide public leadership to elevate and reinforce the importance of an approved COVID-19 vaccine, identify barriers that may impede the acceptance of an approved COVID-19 vaccine by Michigan residents, including identifying areas or groups within this state that are likely to experience vaccine hesitancy, and develop an outreach action plan designed to overcome these barriers. The Commission must complete its work and submit a brief final report to the governor by December 31, 2021.

Currently, Pfizer and Moderna have submitted requests for emergency use authorization of COVID-19 vaccines to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Dr. Khaldun and her team at DHHS are developing a plan to distribute the vaccine in Michigan, with a focus on our most vulnerable populations, frontline workers, and educators. The initial groups to be vaccinated will be critical workers in our health care systems, including those working in hospitals, first responders, and more. EO 2020-193.pdf

12/8/20 – COVID-19 Vaccine Information from the Department of Health and Human Services

12/8/20 – Businesses that require social gatherings for customers and have experienced disrupted operations due to COVID-19 epidemic orders now have additional time to make their December sales, use and withholding tax monthly payment, according to the Michigan Department of Treasury. 

Effective immediately, most entertainment and recreational venues and restaurants that depend on indoor dining scheduled to make their monthly sales, use and withholding tax payments on Dec. 20, 2020, can postpone filing and payment requirements until Jan. 20, 2021. The state Treasury Department will waive all penalties and interest for 31 days. 

Specific information about Treasury providing tax assistance to affected businesses due to COVID-19 epidemic orders can be found in SUW Penalty and Interest Waiver Notice.

12/7/20 – The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) has extended by 12 days the epidemic order that restricts indoor social gatherings and other group activities. The additional 12 days will allow the department to determine the full impact of the Thanksgiving holiday on the spread of COVID-19 across Michigan.

Under today’s order, MDHHS continues to urge families to avoid indoor gatherings, and only two households may gather inside, with strict protocols recommended. Individuals should wear masks consistently whenever they are inside with individuals not in their household, and are recommended to pick only a small group to see regularly. Bars and restaurants must remain closed for dine-in service, but can remain open for outdoor dining, carry-out and delivery. Gyms are open for individual exercise with mandatory masking and additional strict safety measures. Casinos, movie theaters and group exercise classes remain closed. Professional and college sports meeting extraordinary standards for risk mitigation may continue without spectators. Colleges, universities and high schools will continue with remote learning, with no in-person classes.

The order will keep existing measures in place through Dec. 20 and does not include a blanket stay-home action. Employees who work in jobs that cannot be performed from home can continue to go to work, including those in manufacturing, construction and health occupations. Outdoor gatherings, outdoor dining and parks remain open. Individualized activities with distancing and face masks are still allowed: retail shopping; public transit; restaurant takeout; personal-care services such as haircuts, by appointment; and individualized exercise at a gym, with extra spacing between machines.

MDHHS also identified three key metrics that will be utilized in determining whether to slowly reopen at the end of the 12 days. Specifically, the department will be looking closely at the percentage of hospital beds with COVID patients, the number of COVID-19 cases and the positivity rate. With improvements in those numbers in context, MDHHS will carefully reopen, with in-person learning at high schools first. Next in line will be entertainment venues where people can maintain consistent masking, such as casinos, theaters and bowling, with concessions closed. 2020.12.05 PPT.pdf

12/7/20 – Today, Governor Whitmer, Robert Gordon, director of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS), and Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, Chief Medical Executive and Chief Deputy Director for MDHHS will give an update on the COVID pandemic at a 2:30 pm press conference. Watch live at twitter.com/GovWhitmer or Facebook.com/GovGretchenWhitmer.

As always, we remain committed to keeping you informed. For more information on COVID, please visit the following resources.

RESOURCES

 

12/7/20 – Gov. Whitmer COVID Update

12/3/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued the following statement after securing the extension of Michigan National Guard forces for COVID-19 response through March 31, 2021. Title 32 authority, which allows Guard members to receive federal pay and benefits, was previously set to expire on December 31, 2020, due to a deadline set by the Trump Administration.

In anticipation of rapid vaccine approvals from the Food and Drug Administration, Michigan will look to the Michigan National Guard to provide logistical support and transportation support to help distribute the vaccines.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, Michigan National Guard members have helped distribute more than 14 million pounds of food at food banks, delivered tests and protective equipment across the state, and assisted with testing more than 200 thousand Michiganders for COVID-19. The Guard is partnering with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and local health departments to offer COVID-19 testing, provide antigen training for health care practitioners, and to provide informational assistance in call centers.

12/3/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan COVID-19 Task Force on Racial Disparities, Chaired by Lieutenant Governor Garlin Gilchrist II, released an interim report detailing the significant progress Michigan has made in protecting communities of color from the spread of COVID-19.

The Task Force’s interim report details a number of actions the state has taken to protect communities of color, frontline workers, and small businesses from the spread of COVID-19. As of November 16, more than 24,000 tests have been administered in previously underserved communities across 21 Neighborhood Testing sites. These state-operated sites provide COVID-19 testing on a consistent schedule, several days per week. All sites offer free testing, and a prescription is not required for someone to be tested, nor is any form of ID required.

From March and April to September and October, the average cases per million per day for African American Michiganders dropped from 176 to 59. In the same period, the number of probable deaths per million per day among African American Michiganders dropped significantly – from 21.7 to 1.  COVID-19 Task Force on Racial Disparities Interim Report.pdf

12/3/20 – Governor Whitmer COVID Update

11/19/20 – Governor Whitmer COVID Update

11/16/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer released the following statement after the state of Michigan recorded it’s 8,000th COVID-19 related death, and as Moderna announced that clinical trials show that their vaccine is effective:

“I want to express my deepest sympathies to all Michiganders who have lost a loved one to this virus. We all owe it to them to take this seriously so we can save more lives and protect each other. We must all choose to take action against COVID-19 and get through this together.

“As the weather gets colder, we must continue to listen to medical experts and join forces to fight COVID-19. We beat this virus in the spring by listening to the public health experts, and we can beat it again. Yesterday, my administration issued an epidemic order that limits indoor gatherings where COVID-19 can easily spread from person to person. These steps are what the public health experts say we need to take to avoid overwhelmed hospitals and death counts like we saw in the spring. Doing this will protect the medical workers, first responders, and other essential workers on the front lines. We all have a personal responsibility to follow these laws and to do everything we can to protect one another.

“We still need help from the federal government if we’re going to make it through this winter. It is more crucial than ever that the president, Mitch McConnell, and Nancy Pelosi work across the aisle to pass a bipartisan recovery package that includes more help for unemployed workers, more small business help, more support for locally-owned restaurants and all restaurant workers that are struggling, and more money to safely reopen our schools.

“There is hope on the horizon. Moderna announced today that their vaccine is highly effective and awaiting approval. This is great news for our families, frontline workers, and small businesses, and Moderna is not alone. Last week, Pfizer announced similar news, with both companies’ vaccines showing over 90% efficacy. This is all good news, but it doesn’t mean that we can let our guard down and loosen the safety measures we have made in our daily lives. It’s crucial that we keep our infection rate low so we can save lives and distribute the vaccine as quickly as possible when it’s ready.

“Whether you’re from a city like Detroit or a rural area like Luce County, and whether you’re a Biden Democrat or a Trump Republican, you have a role in this fight. We beat this virus before. Let’s do it again.”

11/15/20 – The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) issued a new emergency order today that enacts a three-week pause targeting indoor social gatherings and other group activities in an effort to curb rapidly rising COVID-19 infection rates. Governor Whitmer, Chief Medical Executive and MDHHS Chief Deputy for Health Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, and MDHHS Director Robert Gordon held a press conference this evening to discuss this new order. 

 To view the graph from Director Gordon’s PowerPoint presentation, click the link:  11.15.2020 PPT .pdf

10/22/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Directive 2020-11 to protect Michigan’s nearly 50,000 state employees and workplaces from the spread of COVID-19. The governor’s directive requires state departments and autonomous agencies to develop policies and procedures to protect state employees when they return to work. ED 2020-11.pdf

10/22/20 – The bills the governor signed today require employers to allow workers who are exposed to COVID-19 or exhibit the symptoms of COVID-19 to stay home, and prohibit retaliation against employees for staying home when sick or exposed to the virus. The bills also provide a minimum damages award of $5,000 for violations. Awards may be higher than that in the event of more serious conduct or injuries.

House Bills 6030-6032 protect Michigan businesses that comply with relevant COVID-19-related laws, including epidemic orders and rules. HB 6030 make clears that when a business complies with all relevant COVID-19 related statutes, orders, and rules issued by federal, state, and local authorities, they cannot be held liable for a person becoming sick at the business. HB 6031 makes clear that when an employer complies with all relevant COVID-19 related statutes, orders, and rules issued by federal, state, and local authorities, they cannot be held liable under the Michigan Occupational Health and Safety Act for a worker becoming sick at work.

House Bill 6030 was sponsored by Rep. Tom Albert (R-Lowell). House Bill 6031 was sponsored by Rep. Tommy Brann (R-Wyoming) and Rep. Wendell Byrd (D-Detroit). House Bill 6032 was sponsored by Rep. Graham Filler (R-DeWitt).

Governor Whitmer also signed a number of other bills into law.

House Bills 4459-4460 and 4990-4991 together protect consumers against surprise medical billing. Instead of a consumer potentially being stuck with a bill they can’t pay when they receive care at an in-network hospital but see an out-of-network doctor, their insurance company will pay the doctor according to a formula specified in the bill. The bills also provide for certain good-faith cost estimate disclosures in nonemergency situations and other consumer protections. Additionally, the bills limit the ability of an out-of-network provider to bill a patient directly for certain emergency costs, rather the provider and the insurer will now settle the disputed charge. These bills put Michigan among the states leading the charge for consumer protection when it comes to surprise medical billing. HB 4459-4460 were sponsored by Representative Frank Liberati (R-Allen Park), and HB 4490-4491 were sponsored by Representative Roger Hauck (R-Beal City).

House Bill 6159 codifies protections for medical providers and facilities provided by Executive Order 2020-30 and 2020-61. The bills will apply retroactively on or after March 29, 2020 and before July 14, 2020. The bill was sponsored by Representative Roger Hauck (R-Beal City).

House Bill 6192 provides extensions for the validity of certain permits, licenses, and registrations issued by the Secretary of State. Many of these permits were extended once already to September 30, 2020. This second extension makes many permits, licenses, and registrations valid until December 11, 2020. The bill was sponsored by Representative Jack O’Malley (R-Lake Ann).

Senate Bill 1094 requires the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) to evaluate the operation, efficacy, clinical outcomes, and performance of nursing homes throughout the state during the COVID-19 pandemic. The bill also creates a series of requirements surround the state’s COVID-19 nursing home policy. DHHS, in consultation with LARA, will work to provide a statewide visitation policy, implement plans concerning COVID-19 laboratory testing, a process to approve care and recovery facilities among other key goals before November 15, 2020. The bill was sponsored by Senator Peter Lucido (R-Shelby Township).

10/16/20 – Governor Whitmer signed emergency rules allowing the Michigan Employment Relations Commission (MERC) and the Michigan Public Service Commission (PSC) to conduct remote hearings to protect Michiganders and frontline workers. Emergency rules on remote hearings 101620.pdf

10/16/20 – Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed emergency rules to clarify workers’ compensation coverage for health care employees and first responders who have tested positive for COVID-19. The emergency rules apply to workers in the medical industry, including hospitals, medical care facilities, and emergency medical services, as well as law enforcement, fire safety, and others. These employees are presumed eligible for compensable personal injuries under the Workers’ Disability Compensation Act if they are diagnosed with COVID-19, either by a physician or as the result of a presumed positive test result.

These emergency rules replace protections previously afforded by Executive Order 2020-128, which is no longer effective as a result of the Michigan Supreme Court’s finding that the Emergency Powers of the Governor Act of 1945 is unconstitutional. They are effective through March 20, 2021. To view the emergency rules, visit here.

10/14/20 – The Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) within the Michigan Dept. of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO) is one of the first state OSHA programs to promulgate rules which clarify the safety requirements employers must follow to protect their employees from COVID-19. Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed her concurrence of the need for a comprehensive set of Emergency Rules that will help protect Michigan workers, businesses, customers and communities from the spread of COVID-19.

Under the Emergency Rules, businesses that resume in-person work must, among other things, have a written COVID-19 preparedness and response plan and provide thorough training to their employees that covers, at a minimum, workplace infection-control practices, the proper use of personal protection equipment (PPE), steps workers must take to notify the business or operation of any symptoms of COVID-19 or a suspected or confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19, and how to report unsafe working conditions.

MIOSHA’s Emergency Rules implement workplace safeguards for all Michigan businesses and specific requirements for industries, including manufacturing,  construction, retail, health care, exercise facilities, restaurants and bars.

The rules establish workplace safety requirements and employers should coordinate these requirements with the Emergency Order issued by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services restricting gathering sizes, requiring face coverings in public spaces and childcare facilities, placing capacity limitations on stores, bars and other public venues and providing safer workplaces. MIOSHA Emergency Rules 10-14-20.pdf

10/12/20 – Today, five public health experts sent an open letter to Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey explaining the problems with his recent comments on herd immunity. On October 10, an MLive article published comments by Senate Majority Leader Shirkey where he said, “I’m also a big believer that there’s an element of herd immunity that needs to take place.”  Public Health Experts Letter to Sen. Shirkey.pdf

10/5/20 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer released a video on social media urging Michiganders, the legislature, the president, and Congress to do their part to protect families, frontline workers, and small businesses from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

10/5/20 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Director Robert Gordon filed a motion with the Michigan Supreme Court requesting that they clarify that their October 2nd ruling does not take effect until Friday, October 30th. On October 2nd, a narrow majority of the Supreme Court struck down the statute under which the governor has issued executive orders to save lives and protect Michigan families, frontline workers, and small businesses. If the ruling went into effect immediately, up to 830,000 Michigan workers and their families could lose crucial unemployment benefits. Moreover, critical measures meant to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus would also immediately lapse. Ensuring this transition period will allow the governor, local health departments, and the Michigan Legislature to work together to put protections in place that will keep Michiganders safe and protect our economy.

10/2/20 – After a recent surge in COVID-19 cases in the Upper Peninsula, or MERC Region 8, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-192 moving the region back to phase 4 of the MI Safe Start Plan. The executive order will go into effect Friday, October 9 at 12:01am, although given the surge in cases everyone should make this transition as swiftly as possible. The move to Phase 4 will require people who can perform work remotely to do so, require schools to enforce mask requirements with limited exceptions, and place limits on social gatherings and stores that match those in place in most of the state, among other changes.

The governor’s order will implement the following changes in the Upper Peninsula:

• People who can perform their work remotely will be required to do so;
• Social gatherings and organized events will be subject to the new Phase 4 limits in Executive Order 2020-183: indoor residential – 10 people or less; indoor non-residential may allow more, depending on the size of the facility and subject to formulas in the order.
• Stores of less than 50,000 square feet must limit number of people in store, including employees, to 25% of total occupancy limits. Stores of 50,000 square feet or more must limit customers to no more than 20 people per 1,000 square feet of customer floor space, and allow 2 hours of week dedicating shopping time for vulnerable populations.
• Schools must require face coverings at certain times, including in the classroom, among other requirements.  EO 2020-192.pdf

9/30/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-191, maintaining protections for Michigan’s most vulnerable populations living in congregate settings and staff. The order takes into consideration recommendations from the governor’s Michigan Nursing Homes COVID-19 Preparedness Task Force, which released its report August 31.  EO 2020-191 Emerg order – Long-term care facilities.pdf

9/29/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer took further action to save lives and protect the health and safety of Michiganders by extending the State of Emergency until October 27, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. Executive Order 2020-186 will allow the state to continue to mobilize resources and take the reasonable and necessary steps to protect Michiganders and their families. The governor also extended four executive orders to protect Michigan families and our most vulnerable populations.

The four other executive orders the governor signed today include: 

  • Executive Order 2020-187 which protects vulnerable populations and strengthens our economic recovery by extending through October 31 the governor’s previous order allowing business to be conducted remotely through expanded use of e-notaries and e-signatures.   
  • Executive Order 2020-188 which extends the limited and temporary restrictions on the entry of individuals into health care facilities, residential care facilities, congregate care facilities, and juvenile justice facilities. The Department of Health and Human Services will continue to issue orders to specify exceptions to this order. 
  • Executive Order 2020-189 which extends through October 31 protections for prison and jail populations through enhanced cleaning protocols and implementation of testing protocols by Michigan Department of Corrections prisons and any jails that transfer inmates to MDOC prisons. 
  • Executive Order 2020-190 which adds protections for workers and customers at food-selling establishments to the Workplace Safeguards order, including the requirement to maintain two hours a week of reserved shopping time for vulnerable populations. 

9/25/20 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Orders 2020-183, which amends the MI Safe Start order to reopen movie theaters and performance venues and 2020-185, which requires face coverings for students in grades K-5.

Beginning October 9, a number of previously closed businesses are slated to reopen statewide, including indoor theaters, cinemas, performance venues, arcades, bingo halls, bowling centers, indoor climbing facilities, trampoline parks, and more. EO 2020-183 Emerg order – MI Safe Start.pdf     EO 2020-184 Emerg order – Worker Safeguards.pdf     EO 2020-185 Emerg order – Education order amendment.pdf

9/22/20 – In a new videoGovernor Whitmer sat down with Michigan’s Chief Medical Executive and MDHHS Chief Deputy for Health Dr. Joneigh Khaldun and her Chief Legal Counsel Mark Totten to discuss Michigan’s ongoing response to COVID-19 over the past six months. Both Totten and Dr. Khaldun have worked in tandem with the governor and many others to ensure Michigan’s swift response to the virus and to save lives. Since Michigan’s first case of COVID-19 in March, they have each worked around the clock to implement executive orders, directives and policies that protect the health and safety of Michigan families, frontline workers, educators, and small businesses.  

9/18/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) announced that the state has secured agreements from nearly all of the state’s health insurers to waive all out-of-pocket costs for COVID-19 testing and treatments through the end of 2020, including copays, deductibles, and coinsurance. These agreements cover more than 92% of the commercial health insurance market in Michigan.

At least through year’s end, consumers with these individual and group health plans will not be charged cost-sharing for medically appropriate COVID-19-related medical treatment, such as primary care visits, diagnostic testing, emergency room visits, ambulance services, and U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved medications and vaccines when they become available.

The insurers who have agreed to waive cost-sharing are: 

  • Aetna Better Health of Michigan
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Blue Care Network
  • HAP, Alliance Health
  • Humana
  • McLaren Health Plan
  • Meridian Health Plan
  • Molina Healthcare Michigan
  • Paramount Care of Michigan 
  • Physicians Health Plan (PHP)
  • Priority Health, Priority Health Insurance Co.
  • Total Health Care

The waived cost-sharing applies to commercial health insurance products from the insurers named in the state agreement. Consumers seeking COVID-19 testing or treatment should contact their insurance company to find out about their coverage. Insured consumers who pay up front or receive a bill for COVID-19 testing or treatment should contact their insurance company for assistance. 

9/14/20 – Governor Whitmer COVID Update

9/10/20 – Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, along with leaders in education, business, labor and workforce development, today launched the nation’s first program offering tuition-free college to an estimated 625,000 Michiganders who provided essential, frontline services during COVID-19 Stay Home, Stay Safe orders between April – June 2020.

Futures for Frontliners, inspired by the GI Bill which provided college degree to those serving their country in WWII, offers Michigan adults without college degrees or high school diplomas who provided essential services during the pandemic a tuition-free pathway to gaining the skills needed to obtain high-demand, high-wage careers. The funding is not only available to those in the medical field, but also essential workers in manufacturing, nursing homes, grocery stores, sanitation, delivery, retail and more.

“This initiative is Michigan’s way of expressing gratitude to essential workers for protecting public health and keeping our state running,” Whitmer said. “Whether it was stocking shelves, delivering supplies, picking up trash, manufacturing PPE or providing medical care, you were there for us. Now this is your chance to pursue the degree or training you’ve been dreaming about to help you and your own family succeed.”

To be eligible for the program, applicants must:

  • Be a Michigan resident
  • Have worked in an essential industry at least part-time for 11 of the 13 weeks between April 1 – June 30, 2020
  • Have been required by their job to work outside the home at least some of the time between April 1 – June 30, 2020
  • Not have previously earned an associate or bachelor’s degree
  • Not be in default on a Federal student loan

Complete a Futures for Frontliners scholarship application by 11:59 p.m., Dec. 31, 2020. www.michigan.gov/Frontliners

9/9/20 – Governor Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-180 today clarifying the rules on face coverings for organized sports during training, practice, and competition.

Executive Order 2020-180 specifies that a face covering must be worn at all times by athletes training for, practicing for, or competing in an organized sport when the athlete cannot maintain 6 feet of social distance, except for occasional and fleeting moments. Athletes are not required to wear a face covering if they are swimming. Athletes competing in football, soccer, or volleyball, for example, are not able to maintain 6 feet of social distance as required and therefore would need to wear a facial covering.  EO 2020-180 Emerg order – MI Safe Start amendment.pdf

9/5/20 – Governor Whitmer signed Senate Bill 745, which appropriates $2.8 billion in supplemental funding from federal revenues awarded by the Federal Emergency Management Agency to cover a temporary $300 per week enhanced federal payment for eligible Michiganders receiving unemployment benefits.   

As part of the FEMA program, the additional $300 per week in unemployment benefits will continue until the federal emergency disaster relief funding made available for this program has been exhausted. At this time, it is unknown how many weeks may be covered by existing funds.

9/3/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer took further action to protect the health and safety of Michiganders by extending the State of Emergency until October 1, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. Executive Order 2020-177 will allow the state to continue to mobilize resources and take the reasonable and necessary steps to protect Michiganders and their families.  EO 2020-177 Emergency declaration.pdf

9/3/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-176 reopening Michigan’s gyms and pools in those regions where they remain closed and allowing for organized sports practices and competitions to resume in those regions where they remain restricted, subject to strict protections meant to limit spread of the virus. Gyms and pools may begin to reopen on Wednesday, September 9. The governor also signed Executive Order 2020-175 outlining strict workplace safety measures gyms and pools must follow to protect people from the spread of COVID-19.  EO 2020-176.pdf     EO 2020-175.pdf     Public Guidance for Contact Sports.pdf

9/2/20 – Governor Whitmer COVID-19 Update

9/2/20 – To expand testing opportunities and make it easier for Michiganders to access testing in their own backyards, the Michigan Department of the Health and Human Services (MDHHS) is partnering with community organizations to launch 12 Neighborhood Testing Sites by the end of the week and more than 20 across the state in coming weeks. 

Testing will be free and hosted by trusted community partners including churches, community colleges and nonprofit organizations. Locations were chosen in part to help address racial and ethnic disparities that had existed prior to the pandemic and were exacerbated by the virus – a focus of the Racial Disparities Task Force. 

Test sites open and opening this week are as follows: 

  • Historic King Solomon Baptist Church of Detroit, 6100 14th Street, Detroit. Hours: Thursdays 12 – 8 p.m.; Fridays 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Saturdays 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
  • Triumph Church, Central Campus 15801 Joy Road, Detroit. Hours: Mondays 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Wednesdays 12 – 8 p.m.; Fridays 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. 
  • Wayne County Community College District Northwest Campus, 8200 West Outer Drive, Detroit. Hours: Tuesdays 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Wednesdays 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.; Saturdays 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
  • Southwestern Church of God, 3032 Fort Street, Detroit. Hours: Mondays 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Wednesdays 12 – 8 p.m.; Saturdays 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
  • Macedonia Baptist Church, G5443 North Saginaw Street, Flint. Hours: Mondays 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.; Fridays 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.; Saturdays 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
  • Bethel United Methodist Church, B1309 N Ballenger Highway, Flint. Hours: Tuesdays 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.; Wednesdays 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.; Thursdays 1 – 7 p.m.
  • All God’s People, 25295 Chippendale Street, Roseville. Hours: Tuesdays 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.; Wednesdays 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.; Thursdays 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
  • Word of Life Christian Church, 460 West Atherton Road, Flint. Hours: Tuesdays 12 – 6 p.m.; Wednesdays 12 – 6 p.m.; Thursdays 12 – 6 p.m. Open on Sept. 3.
  • International Gospel Center, 375 SalliotteRoad, Ecorse. Hours: Tuesdays 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Wednesdays 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Thursdays 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. Open on Sept. 3. 
  • Albion College-Washington Gardner, 401 East Michigan Avenue, Albion. Hours: Mondays 12 – 7 p.m.; Wednesdays 12 – 7 p.m.; Fridays 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Open on Sept. 4.
  • Kirtland Community College, 4800 West 4 Mile Road, Grayling. Hours: Wednesdays 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.; Thursdays 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.; Saturdays 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Open on Sept. 5.
  • Hartford Memorial Baptist Church, Head Start Building 14000 West Seven Mile, Detroit. Hours: Mondays 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Fridays 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.; Saturdays 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Open on Sept. 5.

8/28/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer continued to protect Michigan’s most vulnerable populations, including those in nursing homes and congregate care facilities, by signing Executive Order 2020-174. The governor’s order continues the limited and temporary restrictions on the entry of individuals into health care facilities, residential care facilities, congregate care facilities, and juvenile justice facilities previously imposed by Executive Order 2020-156. The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) remains empowered to specify exceptions to these restrictions, and should carefully consider the recommendations of the upcoming Nursing Home Task Force report in doing so. 2020-174.pdf

8/28/20 – Governor Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-173, which extends her previous order allowing business to be conducted remotely by permitting expanded use of e-notaries and e-signatures.  EO 2020-173 Emerg order Notaries – reissue.pdf

8/27/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-172, which prohibits employers from discharging, disciplining, or retaliating against employees who make the responsible choice to stay home when they or their close contacts are sick. The order, protecting employees who stay home when sick from retaliation, comes at a critical time when unemployed and underemployed workers face uncertainty after the Trump Administration allowed the $600 pandemic unemployment benefit to expire. The governor’s order clarifies when a worker has the principal symptoms of COVID-19 so that workers who have a known medical or physical condition causing their symptoms need not stay home.  EO 2020-172 Emerg order – workers protections – reissue.pdf

8/25/20 – Today, Governor Whitmer welcomed a $1.2M donation from IKEA Retail U.S. that will go to Michigan’s COVID-19 Response and Recovery Initiative. The donation is the largest donation to the fund to date and will help support Michigan’s ongoing COVID-19 relief efforts and other critical services.

The Michigan COVID-19 Response and Recovery Initiative helps leverage federal resources, including FEMA funds, that require a match to provide critical services and needs to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. Donations are allocated to allocated to provide food and water, education support for children, and personal protective equipment, and other essential activities as needs are identified.

8/21/20 – Today, the United States Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) approved the Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency’s application for funding that would provide an additional $300 per week payment to Michiganders receiving unemployment benefits.

At this time, claimants do not have to take any action to receive the additional benefit amount provided by the program. The additional benefits will be added automatically for all claimants who are eligible to receive at least $100 in weekly unemployment benefit payments. This includes claimants receiving any type of regular unemployment insurance benefits as well as those receiving Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) benefits.

8/19/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced that she will allocate nearly $65 million in federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act dollars to Michigan school districts, higher education institutions, and other education-related entities that have been most significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes schools in Michigan’s economically disadvantaged districts, and will help address the digital divide that has served as a barrier to remote learning for students and educators across the state.  The funding comes from the Governor’s Education Emergency Relief Fund.   

Recipient districts will be required to use GEER funds for any of the following goals: 

  • Connectivity: Devices, internet access, access to remote services, or other similar purposes.
  • Student Mental Health: Funding would enhance access to remote and in-person student mental health services.
  • Addressing Learning Loss:Funding could be used by districts to offer supplementary content and intervention services to mitigate the impacts of learning loss. 
  • Out-of-School-Time Learning: Funds could be used to support out-of-school-time learning. These expenditures would ensure students have safe spaces to participate in remote education.
  • Remote Learning Materials and Training (digital and non-digital): Funds could address both digital and non-digital content where remote learning continues as an instructional delivery model. 
  • Teacher Training and Curriculum:Funding could be used to provide additional professional development and curriculum modifications that allow districts to effectively facilitate distance learning while expanding their knowledge of the science of teaching.  
  • Other health, safety, and wellness needs identified, required, or recommended in the MI Return to School Roadmap.

$5.4 million will be distributed to other education related entities, and will be distributed for statewide mental health services, public television learning resources, implementation of teacher professional learning practices, and the Early On program to help reach more infants and toddlers through remote early intervention.

8/18/20 – Today, the Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) submitted an application to the United States Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) for funding that would provide an additional $300 per week payment to Michiganders receiving unemployment benefits.

“Right now, there are an unprecedented number of Michiganders who have lost work due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This program will provide some much needed support for families that are struggling to put food on the table or pay their bills, but it’s a short term band aid that falls short of what’s needed,” said Governor Whitmer. “A robust Congressional recovery package that meets the scale of this crisis is what’s needed to help individuals who have lost work as a result of the pandemic get through this unprecedented time.”

The UIA estimates that under the program, about 910,000 Michiganders would receive at least $300 per week in supplemental benefits. The program allows for existing Unemployment Trust Fund payments delivered by Michigan’s Unemployment Insurance Agency to count as 25% matching funds required for participation. Eligible claimants will be paid benefits retroactive to August 1. It is unclear at this time how long funding for the program will last.

8/15/20 – Governor Whitmer signed a revised executive order on jails and prisons that requires adoption of testing protocols for Michigan Department of Corrections facilities, and requires that jails adopt comparable protocols in order to transfer prisons to state facilities. EO 2020-170 Emerg order – jails and prisons – 2020-146 reissue.pdf

8/14/20 – Four million free masks are being provided to Michigan residents who are most vulnerable to COVID-19 through a partnership involving the state, Ford Motor Company and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced today.

Low-income residents, seniors, schools and homeless shelters will benefit from the MI Mask Aid partnership that is part of the Mask Up Michigan campaign.

The project is in partnership with Gov. Whitmer’s Michigan Coronavirus Task Force on Racial Disparities chaired by Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist II.

The irony of this pandemic that requires physical distancing is that it reveals how connected we truly are—how much we rely on one another every day,” Lt. Governor Gilchrist II said. “I’m thankful for our partners at Ford, FEMA and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services for coming together in a big way to ensure that our communities, particularly those hardest hit, have what they need to get through these tough times. By delivering four million masks at no cost to Michiganders, we can provide a proven, lifesaving device to countless residents as they go back to work, school, and define new way of living during this pandemic.”

The free masks include 1.5 million from FEMA that the state has already sent to organizations that include local Community Action Agencies serving low-income residents, MDHHS offices, Area Agencies on Aging, homeless shelters and Native American tribes.

Another 1 million face coverings from FEMA and 1.5 million from Ford will go to low-income schools, the City of Detroit, Federally Qualified Health Centers, some COVID-19 testing sites and to many of the organizations listed above to reach vulnerable populations – including minority residents who have been affected by the public health crisis as a result of racism.

Anyone interested in receiving a free mask can find a distribution  location by calling the COVID-19 Hotline at 888-535-6136 or looking up their local Community Action Agency online.

8/11/20 – Gov. Whitmer COVID Update

8/10/20 – The Governor continued to protect Michigan’s frontline workers in grocery stores, pharmacies and long-term care facilities by signing Executive Orders 2020-168 and 2020-169. The governor’s orders extend existing safety measures, including 2 hours a week of reserved shopping time for vulnerable populations, to protect consumers and employees at grocery stores and pharmacies.

Executive Order 2020-169 maintains the strong infection control protocols in nursing homes the governor put in place at the outset of this crisis, and protects residents from eviction and employees from retaliatory action for staying home when exhibiting symptoms. 

Executive Order 2020-168, which continues through September 7, extends the following health and safety rules for grocery stores and pharmacies, among others:  

  • Grocery stores and pharmacies must allocate at least two hours per week of shopping time for vulnerable populations. 
  • If an employee tests positive for COVID-19, the business must notify other employees without infringing on private health information. 
  • Grocery stores and pharmacies must offer accommodations to vulnerable employees, such as low-risk assignments or a leave of absence.

8/7/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-166 to reinstate protections for Michigan workers as the state continues to fight the COVID-19 pandemic. The governor signed this order after the federal government allowed federal pandemic unemployment assistance for Americans who have lost work as a result of this virus to lapse at the end of July, putting pressure on more people to return to work, even if they’re sick. Under the Executive Order, the governor prohibits employers from discharging, disciplining, or retaliating against employees who make the responsible choice to stay home when they or their close contacts are sick.  EO 2020-166 Emerg order – worker protections – reissue.pdf

8/7/20 – As Michiganders across the state continue working to protect themselves and their families from the spread of COVID-19, Governor Gretchen Whitmer today took swift action by signing a new executive order to save lives. Executive Order 2020-165 extends the governor’s emergency and disaster declaration until September 4, 2020 at 11:59pm. 

Every region in Michigan has seen an uptick in new cases over the past several weeks, and daily case counts in late July exceeded 50 cases per million statewide. Michigan’s statewide positivity rate has also increased, from a low of 2% in mid-June to 3.5% in late July. The increase in cases reflects a national trend: COVID-19 cases are growing or holding steady in 40 states and deaths from COVID-19 are increasing in most of those states as well. While cases in Michigan have increased since June, our numbers are below the national average, with roughly a 3.5% positivity rate in Michigan compared to 9% nationally, and considerably lower than surrounding states. EO 2020-165.pdf

8/6/20 – Governor Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-164 which requires face coverings to be worn in all child-care centers and camps. Michigan has seen COVID-19 outbreaks at these locations, adding to the mounting evidence that children can contract and spread the virus. By requiring face coverings, child-care centers and camps can remain open while keeping children and staff members safe.   EO 2020-164 Emerg order – masks and camps.pdf

8/4/20 – Governor Whitmer signed Executive Directive 2020-08 today to direct state departments and autonomous agency heads to review allocation of their resources to ensure that enforcement of COVID-19-related laws is a priority, such as limitations on capacity and the requirement to wear a mask when entering a Michigan business. Cases have risen over the past month—from a rolling seven-day average of about 15 cases per million on in mid-June, the low point since the peak last April, to about 50 cases per million in late July. ED 2020-08 COVID-19 and enforcement.pdf

8/4/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued the following statement after President Trump granted her request that he authorize the use of Michigan National Guard forces for COVID-19 response through December 31, 2020. Title 32 authority, which allows Guard members to receive federal pay and benefits, was previously set to expire on August 21 due to a deadline set by the Trump Administration.

Governor Whitmer sent a letter to President Donald Trump requesting that the president authorize the use of Michigan National Guard forces for COVID-19 response through December 31, 2020.

While Title 32 had been funded at 100 percent federal expense, the President has imposed a 25 percent state cost share from August 21 to December 31, 2020.

8/2/20 – Gov. Whitmer COVID Update

7/29/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020160 and Executive Order 2020-161, amending Michigan’s Safe Start Order and issuing revised workplace safeguards. Under the Safe Start Order, starting July 31, 2020, statewide indoor gatherings will be limited to 10 people and bars will be closed for indoor service across the state, including in Regions 6 and 8.   

“As we see COVID-19 cases continue to rise, Michiganders cannot afford to drop our guard. We must take every step possible to saave lives, protect the brave men and women on the front lines, and avoid overwhelming our healthcare system while we continue to combat COVID-19,” said Governor Whitmer. “After seeing a resurgence in cases connected to social gatherings across the state, we must further limit gatherings for the health of our community and economy. By taking these strong actions, we will be better positioned to get our children back into classrooms and avoid a potentially devastating second wave.”   

COVID-19’s resurgence is closely associated with super-spreading events at large social gatherings, often attended by young people. An outbreak at a Lansing bar has resulted in 187 infections; more than 50 cases have been linked to a single house party in Saline; and a sandbar party at Torch Lake over the July 4 weekend led to at least 43 confirmed cases. Therefore, Executive Order 2020-160 limits statewide indoor gatherings to 10 people or less and, across most of the state, limits outdoor gatherings to 100. (The outdoor gathering limits will remain at 250 in Regions 6 and 8.)  

Executive Order 2020-160 also orders that bars in every region, including those in regions 6 and 8, must close for indoor service if they earn more than 70% of their gross receipts from sales of alcoholic beverages.  

Under the governor’s orders, Detroit casinos will also be allowed to open on August 5, but their occupancy will be limited to 15% capacity. Casinos must also, among other things, conduct a daily entry screening protocol for customers and employees, temperature screening. Casinos must require patrons to wear a face covering, except while eating or drinking or for identification purposes. 

Executive Order 2020160 will rescind Executive Orders 2020-110, 2020-115, 2020-120, 2020-133, and 2020-143EO 2020-161 Emerg order – Workplace safeguards.pdf     EO 2020-160 Emerg order – MI Safe Start.pdf

7/27/20 – Governor Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-157, lifting a paperwork requirement for youth work permits that would require additional in-person interactions, and Executive Order 2020-158, which allows for business to be conducted remotely by allowing for expanded use of e-notaries and e-signatures. EO 2020-157 Emerg order – youth work permit – re-issue.pdf  EO 2020-158 Emerg order – notaries – re-issue.pdf

7/23/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-156, which continues the limited and temporary restrictions on the entry of individuals into health care facilities, residential care facilities, congregate care facilities, and juvenile justice facilities previously imposed by Executive Order 2020-136. The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services remains empowered to specify exceptions to these restrictions. 2020-156.pdf

7/21/20 – Gov. Whitmer COVID Update

7/17/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-153, which strengthens her previous order requiring all Michiganders to wear a mask in indoor public spaces and crowded outdoor spaces. This new order clarifies that businesses may not assume that an unmasked customer cannot medically tolerate a face covering, though they can accept a customer’s verbal representation to that effect. It also requires public safety officers to wear a face covering unless doing so would seriously interfere in the performance of their responsibilities, and clarifies that wearing a mask at a polling place for purposes of voting in an election is not required, but strongly encouraged. EO 2020-153 Emerg order – Masks – re-issue.pdf

7/17/20 – Governor Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-154, which extends previous executive orders to provide temporary alternative means to conduct public meetings, conduct administrative proceedings, and provide the required notice under tax abatement statutes. EO 2020-154 Emerg order – Remote access to public processes.pdf

7/14/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-152 extending a provision of her earlier COVID-19 emergency order on pharmacies that allows student pharmacists to continue training under remote supervision. The order also scales back other provisions of that order that waived aspects of the Public Health Code in order to give pharmacies more flexibility and operational capacity to cope with the enhanced demands of COVID-19. EO 2020-152 Emerg order – pharmacies.pdf

7/14/20 – After every region in Michigan saw an uptick in new COVID-19 cases over the past three weeks, Governor Gretchen Whitmer today took swift action by signing a new executive order to save lives. Executive Order 2020-151 extends the governor’s emergency and disaster declaration until August 11, 2020 at 11:59pm. 

Daily COVID-19 case counts now exceed 20 cases per million in the Detroit, Lansing, Grand Rapids, and Kalamazoo regions. Positivity rates are creeping upward. The increase in cases reflects a national trend: COVID-19 cases are growing in 39 states and in some are surging uncontrollably. Two days ago, for example, Florida recorded 15,300 new cases in a single day, the highest one-day total for any state so far during the pandemic. 

The severe economic toll of the COVID-19 pandemic continues to mount. During this crisis, Michigan has often processed more unemployment claims in a single day than in the most painful week of the Great Recession, and the state already saw its highest unemployment rate since the Great Depression. The Michigan Department of Treasury predicts that this year the state will lose between $1 and $3 billion in revenue. At the same time, continued federal support is by no means assured. Unless it is renewed, for example, Congress’s emergency infusion of money into the unemployment system will cease at the end of this month. Without that money, many families in Michigan will struggle to pay their bills or even put food on the table. 

The health, economic, and social harms of the COVID-19 pandemic remain widespread and severe, and they continue to constitute a statewide emergency and disaster. Though local health departments have some limited capacity to respond to cases as they arise within their jurisdictions, state emergency operations are necessary to bring this pandemic under control in Michigan and to build and maintain infrastructure to stop the spread of COVID-19, trace infections, and quickly direct additional resources to hot-spots as they emerge. EO 2020-151 Emerg declaration.pdf

7/13/20 – Today, Governor Whitmer signed Executive Orders 2020-148 and 2020-149, extending COVID-19 adaptation in long-term care facilities to protect residents and staff, and extending existing safety measures, including 2 hours a week of reserved shopping time for vulnerable populations, to protect consumers and employees at grocery stores and pharmacies. EO 2020-149 Emerg order – Food-sellers – re-issue.pdf     EO 2020-148 Emerg order – Long-term care facilities – re-issue.pdf

7/10/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer sent a letter to President Donald Trump requesting that the president authorize the use of Michigan National Guard forces through December 31, 2020. Title 32 authority, which allows Guard members to receive federal pay and benefits, was set to expire on August 21 due to a deadline set by the Trump Administration.

In addition to allowing Michigan to fully utilize the National Guard for recovery and reopening efforts, the extension of Title 32 authority means that many Guard members will qualify for federal retirement and education benefits made available under the GI Bill. Letter Gov. Whitmer to Pres. Trump re 502(f) extension (7.10.20).pdf
7/10/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed executive order 2020-147, which reiterates that individuals are required to wear a face covering whenever they are in an indoor public space. It also requires the use of face coverings in crowded outdoor spaces. Most significantly, the order requires any business that is open to the public to refuse entry or service to people who refuse to wear a face covering, with limited exceptions. Governors in the states of Kansas, Maine, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Washington have imposed similar requirements on businesses.

Governor Whitmer signed this executive order in response to rising COVID-19 cases in Michigan and across the country. Executive Order 2020-147 reinforces and expands upon the governor’s previous executive orders on safely restarting Michigan’s economy and ensuring workplace safety.

Under the governor’s order, businesses that are open to the public must refuse entry and service to individuals who fail to comply, and must post signs at all entrances instructing customers of their legal obligation to wear a face covering while inside. Those who are exempt from wearing a mask in Michigan businesses include people younger than five years old, those who cannot medically tolerate a face covering, and those who are eating or drinking while seated at a food service establishment.

The executive order takes effect at 12:01 am on Monday, July 13. A willful violation of the order is a misdemeanor subject to a $500 criminal penalty, but no term of confinement may be imposed on individuals who violate the mask requirement. No individual is subject to penalty under the order for removing a mask while engaging in religious worship at a house of religious worship, although consistent with guidance from the CDC, congregants are strongly encouraged to wear face coverings during religious services. EO 2020-147 Emerg order – Masks.pdf

7/9/20 – Governor Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-146 which extends protections for vulnerable populations in Michigan’s county jails, local lockups and juvenile detention centers through Aug. 6, 2020. EO 2020-146 Emerg order – Jails and prisons – re-issue.pdf

7/9/20 – Governor Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-145 which outlines workplace safety guidelines for meatpacking plants to keep employees safe.

Under Executive Order 2020-145, meat and poultry processing plants must:
• Conduct a daily entry screening protocol for employees, contractors, suppliers, and any other individuals entering the facility.
• Configure communal work environments so employees are spaced at least six feet apart in all directions
• Require employees to wear a face covering whenever present at the facility, except when removal is necessary to eat or drink.
• Provide clean cloth face coverings or disposable mask options for employees to use when the coverings become wet, soiled, or otherwise visibly contaminated over the course of a workday.
• Use face shields in addition to face coverings, as necessary.
• Install physical barriers — such as strip curtains, plexiglass or other impermeable dividers or partitions — to separate meat and poultry processing employees from each other.
• Take measures to ensure adequate ventilation in work areas to help minimize employees’ potential exposures.
• Provide visual cues (e.g., floor markings, signs) as a reminder to employees to maintain social distancing.
• Reduce processing capacity or modify the processing or production lines and/or stagger workers across shifts to minimize the number of employees in the facility at any one time.
• Adopt sick leave policies that discourage employees from entering the workplace while sick and modify any incentive programs that penalize employees for taking sick leave.

EO 2020-145 Emerg order – Workplace safeguards – re-issue.pdf

7/7/20 – Gov. Whitmer COVID Update

7/1/20 – Governor Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-143 closing indoor service at bars throughout most of lower Michigan to protect the progress Michigan has made against COVID-19. Regions 6 and 8, which include the Upper Peninsula and much of northern Michigan, are excluded from the order, and bars statewide can continue to serve outdoors. The governor also signed a package of bills allowing cocktails-to-go at bars and restaurants to help these businesses serve more Michiganders during this time. EO 2020-143.pdf

7/1/20 – Today, Governor Whitmer signed Senate Bills 876-878, which codify her previous Executive Orders , further extending the renewal dates for driver’s licenses, CDLs, state ID cards and vehicle registrations. Among the extensions outlined in the legislation, those with driver’s licenses or vehicle registrations expiring between March 1 and June 30 would have until Sept. 30, 2020 to have them renewed. 7-1-20 Gov Whitmer Signing Letter.pdf

7/1/20 – Today, Governor Whitmer signed Senate Bill 690, which appropriates nearly $880 million in federal funding to support various COVID-19 response actions across the state.

The supplemental budget includes a number of provisions that allow assist Michigan in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, help small business weather the difficult economic conditions created by COVID-19, and ensure that workers who put themselves at risk on the frontlines are fairly compensated, including:

• A $2/hour increase for direct care workers;
• $125 million in grant funding to reduce the cost of child care for families;
• $100 million for hazard pay for local first responders and $200 million for local units of government;
• $100 million in small business restart grants;
• $60 million in rental assistance and eviction diversion;
• $25 million for wireless hotspots and enhanced connectivity;
• $18 million for health and safety grants for schools;
• $10 million in MIOSHA grants for protections to keep workers safe on the job;
• and $14 million for food banks and domestic violence shelters.

6/30/20 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer released the MI Safe Schools Return to School Roadmap, a comprehensive document to help districts create local plans for in-person learning in the fall. The Roadmap outlines a number of safety protocols for schools to implement in each phase of the governor’s MI Safe Start Plan. The governor also signed Executive Order 2020-142, which provides a structure to support all schools in Michigan as they plan for a return of PreK-12 education in the fall. EO 2020-142.pdf

6/30/20 – Governor Whitmer today signed Executive Orders 2020-140 and 2020-141, which extends policies lifting certain requirements of the application process for young Michiganders to obtain a work permit and allowing local governments to use alternative means, other than mass mailings, to send out hearing notifications. EO 2020-140 Emerg order – youth work permit reqs – reissue.pdf     EO 2020-141 Emerg Order – Tax abatement alternative notice – re-issue.pdf

6/29/20 – Governor Whitmer COVID Update

6/26/20 – Governor Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-134 extending the temporary suspension of evictions until July 15 and creating the Eviction Diversion Program, which outlines a process for renters to get fast rental assistance or establish a manageable payment plan to keep Michiganders in their homes. Rental assistance under the Eviction Diversion Program will be available beginning July 16. Executive Order 2020-134.pdf

6/25/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-132, which continues to allow certain state administrative hearings to be held by video conference or phone in place of in-person hearings. This order is effective immediately and remains in effect through July 31, 2020EO 2020-132 Emerg order -admin hearings- re-issue.pdf

6/24/20 – Governor Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-131, which extends a previous executive order temporarily allowing e-signatures on official documents and remote notarizations to avoid unnecessary in-person contact during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Executive Order 2020-131 expires on July 31, 2020. EO 2020-131.pdf

6/21/20 – Gov. Whitmer COVID Update

6/18/20 – Gov. Whitmer COVID Update

6/17/20 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced that Michigan schools may resume in-person learning in phase 4 of the MI Safe Start plan, with strict safety measures in place. The governor also announced that on June 30th, she will release an executive order and a robust document called “Michigan’s Return to School Roadmap” that will provide details on what will be required and what will be recommended for schools. The governor also highlighted the need for support and flexibility from the federal government to help ensure resources for students and educators.

The Return to School plan will align closely with the MI Safe Start Plan. The governor will consider the six phases of the MI Safe Start Plan and the Michigan Economic Recover Council’s 8 regions of the state to determine when, where, and how face-to-face instruction can resume. Districts, students, staff, and families must be nimble and be prepared to move backwards if there is evidence of community spread of the virus.

The Roadmap will set the minimum health and safety requirements, although districts may choose to enact more aggressive ones in consultation with local public health officials. These minimum requirements will apply to all schools, including traditional public, charter, private, and parochial schools.

6/16/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-124 extending her previous order which gives pharmacists increased operational capacity and expands access to prescriptions for Michiganders who need them.

Executive Order 2020-124 continues to allow pharmacists to dispense emergency refills of prescriptions for up to 60 days’ worth of supply for patients and require insurers to cover early refills for up to 90 days’ worth of supply during the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The order will also allow pharmacists to dispense COVID-19 treatments according to government-approved protocols. EO 2020-124.pdf

6/15/20 – Gov. Whitmer COVID Update

6/12/20 – Governor Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-122, which allows for statutes of limitations to be calculated normally, beginning June 20. The executive order coincides with Michigan Supreme Court Administrative Order No. 2020-18. EO 2020-122 Emerg order – statute of limitations.pdf

6/12/20 – Governor Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-120, which lifts restrictions on overnight residential, travel, and troop camps beginning June 15.

Executive Order 2020-120 requires camps to follow guidance issued by the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA). These guidelines will be published in the coming days and were developed in close collaboration with public health experts and the camp industry.

The Executive Order also allows certain K-12 school sports activities and other in-person extracurricular school activities to resume. Such activities, however, are permitted only to the extent that they are consistent with rules requiring social distancing and, across most of the state, the closure of indoor exercise facilities. EO 2020-120 Emerg order – summer camps.pdf

6/11/20 – Governor Whitmer today signed Executive Orders 2020-118 , which further extends the duration of protections for tenants and mobile home owners from being evicted from their home until June 30, and Executive Order and 2020-119, which extends protections for vulnerable populations in Michigan’s county jails, local lockups and juvenile detention centers until July 9.  EO 2020-118 Emerg order – evictions – re-issue.pdf  EO 2020-119 Emerg order – jails and prisons – re-issue.pdf

6/10/20 – A new report released by the Imperial College COVID-19 Response Team shows that the aggressive actions Governor Whitmer took to protect Michigan families from the spread of COVID-19 have significantly lowered the number of cases and deaths that would have occurred had the state done nothing. The data shows that very few states dropped their infection rate as low for as long as Michigan. 

As the governor announced the Stay Home, Stay Safe order and other measures to combat the spread of COVID-19, the rate of infection fell. The data shows that before public health measures were put in place, the average Michigander spread the virus to three other people. As measures were implemented and adherence grew, Michigan’s infection rate decreased to 2.5 people, then 1.25, then 0.8. Throughout April, a person with COVID-19 infected an average of less than one other person, allowing the curve to fall. 

6/5/20 – Today, Governor Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-116, which extends her previous Executive Order 2020-79, which lifts certain requirements of the application process for young Michiganders to obtain a work permit. EO 2020-116 Emerg order – youth work permits – re-issue.pdf

6/5/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Orders 2020-114 and 2020-115 to reopen more regions and economic sectors under the MI Safe Start Plan. 

Starting on June 10, Regions 6 and 8 — which include much of northern Michigan and all of the Upper Peninsula — will advance to Phase 5 of the governor’s MI Safe Start Plan. Phase 5 allows the reopening of salons, movie theaters, and gyms, subject to safety protocols and procedures designed to minimize the spread of COVID-19. 

On June 15, personal services including hair, massages, and nails will reopen statewide. Though the remaining regions, 1 through 5 and 7, will remain in Phase 4 under today’s executive orders, the governor has said she expects the entire state will advance to Phase 5 in the coming weeks. 

Under Phase 5, indoor social gatherings and organized events of up to 50 people are permissible. Outdoor social gatherings and organized events are also allowed if people maintain six feet of distance from one another and the gathering consists of no more than 250 people. In addition, outdoor performance and sporting venues will be open with a larger capacity limit of 500, which will allow for some outdoor graduation ceremonies.

In addition, Governor Whitmer has issued an updated rule laying out new workplace safeguards for gyms, in-home services, hair salons, and entertainment venues. Following these safeguards will ensure that workers and patrons alike remain protected as the state moves to reopen. EO 2020-115.pdf   EO 2020-114.pdf

6/4/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-113, which continues to allow certain state administrative hearings to be held by video conference or phone in place of in-person hearings. This order is effective immediately and remains in effect through June 30, 2020.  EO 2020-113 Emerg order – admin hearings – re-issue.pdf

6/3/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today announced rescissions of executive orders on FOIA, hospital capacity, and emergency medical services, and the Michigan Department of Health and Human services (MDHHS) loosened rules on who can visit patients in certain health care settings, as regions across Michigan continue to advance under the MI Safe Start plan. EO 2020-112 Emerg order – rescissions.pdf
MDHHS epidemic order – exceptions to facility entry restrictions.pdf

6/3/20 – The Michigan National Guard will continue its efforts to combat the COVID-19 pandemic after President Donald Trump extended federal deployment known as Title 32 authority until Aug. 21. The extension comes after Gov. Gretchen Whitmer sent a letter to the president on May 27 urging him to extend Title 32 authority.

The Michigan National Guard has played a critical role in flattening the COVID-19 curve in Michigan by distributing Personal Protective Equipment, food, and medical supplies, providing warehousing support, disinfecting public spaces, and assisting the Department of Health and Human Services with testing.

6/1/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-111, which provides additional requirements and procedures to keep agricultural workers and the food supply safe from the effects of COVID-19.

Executive Order 2020-111, which takes effect immediately and expires on June 29, requires owners and operators of employer-provided migrant housing licensed by the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) provide residents with the same safeguards businesses are required to provide workers under Executive Order 2020-97. This includes creating a COVID-19 response plan, providing Personal Protective Equipment and following social distancing measures.  EO 2020-111 Emerg order – migrant worker protections.pdf

6/1/20 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-110, rescinding her Safer at Home order and moving the entire state to phase four of the MI Safe Start Plan.

The governor’s order will allow retailers to reopen on June 4 and restaurants to reopen on June 8, both subject to capacity limits. Day camps for children will likewise be permitted to open on June 8. Effective immediately, groups of 100 or less will be allowed gather outdoors with social distancing. Office work that is not capable of being performed remotely can resume. And in-home services, including housecleaning services, can resume operations.

Michiganders must continue to wear facial coverings when in enclosed public spaces and should continue to take all reasonable precautions to protect themselves, their loved ones, and the community. And they should continue to work from home to the maximum extent possible.

Subject to local regulation, gyms and fitness centers may conduct outdoor classes, practices, training sessions, or games, provided that coaches, spectators, and participants maintain six feet of distance from one another during these activities. Outdoor pools can also reopen, with restricted capacity.  EO 2020-110 Emerg order – MI Safe Start.pdf

5/31/20 – Gov. Whitmer COVID-19 Update

5/29/29 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Orders 2020-109 and 2020-108, which extend existing safety measures to protect consumers and employees at grocery stores and pharmacies, and maintain restrictions regarding entry to care facilities designed to protect vulnerable populations, while allowing the Director of the Department of Health and Human Services to gradually open visitation as circumstances permit. 2020-108 Emerg order – care facilities – re-issue.pdf   EO 2020-109 Emerg order – food sellers – re-issue.pdf

5/28/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today sent a letter to President Trump requesting an extension of Title 32 authority in order to use Michigan National Guard forces to combat the spread of COVID-19 through July 31, 2020. Title 32 status, which provides for federal pay and benefits, is currently authorized by the President through June 24. Letter Gov. Whitmer to Pres. Trump re 502(f).pdf

5/26/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-104, which expands the types of medical personnel that can order a test, and creates a new category of community testing sites that offer testing to anyone with reason to be tested without an advance order, and without charging an out-of-pocket cost to any Michigander.

Under Executive Order 2020-104, anyone who leaves their home for work, or has symptoms of COVID-19 (even mild symptoms), may receive a test at a community testing location without securing a doctor’s order in advance. Medical personnel will be available to order testing upon arrival. A person who wishes to be tested may call the Michigan coronavirus hotline at 1-888-535-6136 or visit www.michigan.gov/coronavirustest to find an appropriate testing location.

Michiganders eligible for testing include someone who:
• Exhibits any symptom of COVID-19, including mild symptoms
• Has been exposed to a person with COVID-19
• Has been working outside their home for at least 10 days
• Resides in any congregate setting, such as a long-term care facility, prison or jail, homeless shelter, or migrant camp   EO 2020-104 Emerg order – testing.pdf

5/25/20 – COVID-19 Update from Governor Whitmer 5/25/20

5/22/20 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-100 to extend Michigan’s Safer at Home order until June 12, 2020. The governor’s order also protects Michiganders from the spread of COVID-19 by extending the temporary closure of certain places of public accommodation such as theaters, gyms, and casinos.

The governor also signed Executive Order 2020-99 to extend the state of emergency declaration related to the COVID-19 pandemic, which was upheld by Judge Cynthia Stephens on May 21, 2020. Since COVID-19 was first discovered in Michigan, Governor Whitmer has taken swift action to protect Michigan families and workers. The governor’s aggressive measures are working, but there is still more to be done. For instance, cases in some counties in Western and Mid-Michigan are now doubling approximately every 10 days. To continue to protect Michigan families from both the public health and economic impacts of the virus, and to lower the chance of a second wave, the governor’s emergency declaration is extended until June 19, 2020. EO 2020-99 Emergency declaration.pdf     EO 2020-100 Emerg order – amendments.pdf

5/22/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-103, which allows local governments to use alternative means, other than mass mailings, to send out hearing notifications. EO 2020-103 Emerg order – tax abatement.pdf

5/22/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-101, extending the validity of watercraft registrations that expired after February 1, 2020 to July 31, 2020.  EO 2020-101 Emerg order – watercraft regisration.pdf

5/21/20 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed executive order 2020-96 to reopen retail businesses and auto dealerships by appointment statewide on Tuesday, May 26, as part of her MI Safe Start plan. The governor’s executive order also lifts the requirement that health care providers delay some nonessential medical, dental, and veterinary procedures statewide beginning on Friday, May 29. And the order authorizes small gatherings of 10 people or less starting immediately, as long as participants practice social distancing.

The governor also signed a separate order, Executive Order 2020-97, updating a prior rule on workplace safety. Per the amended order, reopened outpatient health-care facilities, including clinics, primary care physician offices, and dental offices, will have to adopt strict protocols to prevent infection. The Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs will issue guidance to aid those facilities in adopting appropriate safeguards.

As before, businesses maintaining in-person activities must adopt social distancing practices and other mitigation measures to protect workers. They must, among other things, provide COVID-19 training to workers that covers, at a minimum, workplace infection-control practices, the proper use of PPE, steps workers must take to notify the business or operation of any symptoms of COVID-19 or a suspected or confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19, and how to report unsafe working conditions.

Consistent with the governor’s previous Safer at Home orders, any individual able to medically tolerate a face covering must wear a covering over his or her nose and mouth—like a homemade mask, scarf, bandana, or handkerchief—when in any enclosed public space. Michiganders who are not working as critical infrastructure workers or at a business that has been authorized to reopen should stay home to protect themselves and their families from the spread of COVID-19.
5/19/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-93 extending her previous order which gives pharmacists increased operational capacity and expands access to prescriptions for Michiganders who need them.   EO 2020-93 Emerg order – pharmacies – re-issue.pdf

5/18/20 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-92, allowing for the reopening, in two regions, of retail businesses, office work that cannot be done remotely, and restaurants and bars with limited seating. The two regions are both in the northern part of the state—specifically, MERC regions 6 and 8, as detailed in the governor’s MI Safe Start Plan to re-engage Michigan’s economy. EO 2020-92.pdf

5/18/20 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed executive order 2020-91 to ensure robust protections for Michigan workers as she continues to re-engage parts of the economy. This executive order requires all businesses to adhere to strict safety guidelines to protect their workers, their patrons, and their communities from infection. To foster compliance, the governor also signed Executive Directive 2020-6 to appoint a Director of COVID-19 Workplace Safety within the Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO). EO 2020-91.pdf   ED 2020-6.pdf

5/17/20 – Update from Gov. Whitmer on 5/17/20

5/15/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today announced the creation of the Return to Learning Advisory Council via Executive Order 2020-88, formalizing a process for determining how schools may be able to reopen in the fall. The panel – which will be comprised of students, parents, frontline educators, administrators and public health officials – will be tasked with providing the COVID-19 Task Force on Education within the State Emergency Operations Center with recommendations on how to safely, equitably, and efficiently return to school in the Fall. The State of Michigan will also partner with a national nonprofit organization called Opportunity Labs to bring national expertise to this project. EO 2020-88.pdf

5/14/20 – Governor Whitmer COVID-19 Update for 5/14/20

5/14/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-86, which expands telehealth options for Michiganders by authorizing and encouraging health care providers to use these services when appropriate and after getting consent from patients. The order takes effect immediately and continues through June 10, 2020. EO 2020-86 Emerg order – telehealth.pdf

5/14/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-87, which provides an extended opportunity for individuals to dispute the assessed value of their property, extends certain equalization filing and meeting deadlines for local and county officials, and extends the deadline for filing petitions to appeal assessment determinations as to commercial and industrial property. EO 2020-87 Emerg Order – Board of Review.pdf

5/14/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-85, which temporarily extends protections for tenants and mobile home owners from being evicted from their home during the continuing COVID-19 pandemic. EO 2020-85 Emerg order – evictions – re-issue.pdf

5/14/20 – Governor Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-83 and 2020-84 last night, both of which were effective immediately and replace her previous orders 2020-51 and 2020-50, respectively.  Executive Order 2020-83 continues the expanded access and capacity for child care services, giving priority to essential workforce, and extends until June 10, 2020. Executive Order 2020-84 continues to protect residents and staff in long-term care facilities and extends until May 20, 2020.  EO 2020-83 Emerg order – child care – re-issue.pdf   EO 2020-84 Emerg order – long-term care facilities – re-issue.pdf

5/13/20 – Today the state of Michigan announced that it would participate in the federal Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) Work Share program to help offset budget implications as a result of the state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As part of this program, impacted state employees will take two temporary layoff days per pay period beginning Sunday, May 17th until July 25th resulting in up to $80 million in decreased wage costs.  

This federal program allows the state to keep employees working with reduced hours, while employees collect partial unemployment benefits to make up a portion of the lost wages. State managers at the 17 level and above will not participate in Work Share but will take one layoff day every other pay period resulting in an approximate 5 percent reduction in gross pay. Over 31,000 state employees will be impacted. 

Impacted employees will retain their health insurance and other benefits and will be automatically enrolled into the unemployment process to help ensure they have the support they need during this challenging time.  

Last month, Governor Whitmer announced she was taking a 10 percent pay cut and directed her executive team and cabinet appointees to take a 5 percent pay cut for the remainder of the fiscal year. Additionally, the Executive Office of the Governor will participate in the Work Share program. 

Today’s layoffs do not impact anybody working on the front lines of the COVID-19 response. Law enforcement, the prison system, veterans’ homes, and other key health and human services all remain fully staffed with on-site employees.

5/12/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-82, extending a prior order temporarily lifting regulatory requirements on hospitals and care facilities to help ensure adequate personnel and facilities to serve patients during the continuing COVID-19 pandemic.

The reissued order authorizes the Michigan Departments of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) to waive certain requirements to expedite bringing additional care facilities online as needed. The order also empowers LARA to ensure an adequate supply of care providers during the emergency by granting the department additional flexibility in its decisions about licensing, registration and workflow requirements. EO 2020-82 Emerg order – hospital capacity – re-issue.pdf

5/11/20 – Governor Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-79, which lifts certain requirements of the application process for young Michiganders to obtain a work permit.

Young Michiganders constitute an important part of the summer workforce, especially because the COVID-19 pandemic requires that many workers stay home when experiencing symptoms or because they are part of a vulnerable population. As a result of the governor’s previous order to close schools for remainder of the school year, obtaining the proper documentation from school personnel is difficult and therefore it is necessary to lift requirements to ensure youth can obtain summer work during the COVID-19 pandemic. EO 2020-79 Emerg order – youth work permit reqs.pdf

5/11/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-80, which continues to allow certain state administrative hearings to be held by video conference or phone in place of in-person hearings. This order is effective immediately and remains in effect through June 8, 2020 at 11:59 pm. EO 2020-80 Emerg order – admin hearings – re-issue.pdf

5/11/20 – Governor Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-81 to replace her previous order that temporarily lifts weight and other delivery-related restrictions for vehicles carrying essential supplies.

Executive Order 2020-81 extends provisions lifting state and local non-seasonal load restrictions, as well as other restrictions on the timing and loading of deliveries, for deliveries that meet immediate needs for medical supplies and equipment related to the testing, diagnosis and treatment of COVID-19, as well as other critical supplies, equipment, and personnel.

The executive order is effective immediately and extends until May 25th. EO 2020-81 Emerg order – deliveries – re-issue.pdf

5/8/20 – Governor Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-78to temporarily extend the expiration of state identification cardsdriver’s licenses and operator endorsements, as well as suspends penalties for vehicle registration violations, and protects Michigan drivers. The order also ensures that automobile insurance will continue to protect and cover Michigan drivers. EO 2020-78 Emerg order – driver license – re-issue.pdf

5/7/20 – After announcing that Michigan’s manufacturing workers will return to work on Monday, May 11, Governor Gretchen Whitmer detailed the six phases of her MI Safe Start Plan to re-engage Michigan’s economy. The governor has worked with leaders in health care, business, labor, and education to develop the plan, and announced today that Michigan is in phase three. 

The phases of the pandemic include:

1) UNCONTROLLED GROWTH: The increasing number of new cases every day, overwhelming our health systems. 

2) PERSISTENT SPREAD: We continue to see high case levels with concern about health system capacity. 

3) FLATTENING: The epidemic is no longer increasing and the healthsystem‘s capacity is sufficient for current needs. 

4) IMPROVING: Cases, hospitalizations and deaths are clearly declining. 

5) CONTAINING: Continued case and death rate improvements, with outbreaks quickly contained. 

6) POST-PANDEMIC: Community spread not expected to return. 

Click the link below for the governor’s full MI Safe Start Plan: Governor Whitmer’s MI Safe Start Plan.pdf

5/7/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-77 to extend Michigan’s Stay Home, Stay Safe order to May 28. The governor’s order will allow manufacturing workers, including those at Michigan’s Big 3 auto companies, to resume work on Monday, May 11 as part of her MI Safe Start Plan.  

Under Executive Order 2020-77, manufacturing facilities must adopt measures to protect their workers from the spread of COVID-19. That includes conducting a daily entry screening protocol for workers and everyone else entering the facility, including a questionnaire covering symptoms and exposure to people with possible COVID-19, together with a temperature screening as soon as no-touch thermometers can be obtained. They must also create dedicated entry points at every facility, and suspend entry of all non-essential in-person visits, including tours. 

Manufacturing facilities must also train workers on, among other things, how COVID-19 is transmitted from person to person, signs and symptoms of COVID-19, steps workers must take to notify the business or operation of signs and symptoms of COVID-19 or suspected or confirmed diagnosis, and the use of personal protective equipment. 

All businesses in the state—including manufacturers—must require masks to be worn when workers cannot consistently maintain six feet of separation from others, and consider face shields for those who cannot consistently maintain three feet of separation from other workers. 

The governor’s Stay Home, Stay Safe order remains in effect until May 28, 2020. Under this order, Michiganders still must not leave their homes except to run critical errands, to engage in safe outdoor activities, or to go to specified jobs. EO 2020-77.pdf

5/6/20 – Kroger Health, the healthcare arm of Kroger, is opening a free COVID-19 drive-thru testing site today for patients in the Grand Blanc area, announced Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS).  

Testing will start May 7 and May 8 and continue through the end of May, Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Testing will be held in the Grand Blanc High School parking lot, 12500 Holly Road. 

Interested individuals can determine eligibility and schedule a test at: KrogerHealth.com/covidtesting.

5/6/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-76, extending and building upon her earlier executive orders expanding eligibility for unemployment benefits during the continuing COVID-19 pandemic.  

The Executive Order expedites benefits for tens of thousands of Michiganders who have filed for unemployment benefits by allowing the state to review only an individual’s most recent job separation, which is the cause of the current unemployment, to determine the individual’s benefit entitlement. EO 2020-76 Emerg order – unemployment – re-issue.pdf

5/6/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-75, which extends a previous Executive Order that allows public bodies to conduct remote public meetings during the continuing COVID-19 pandemic. Executive Order 75 expires on June 30, 2020. EO 2020-75 Emerg order – OMA – re-issue.pdf

5/5/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Orders 2020-73 and 2020-74, which extend two Executive Orders signed last month to help protect the health and safety of all Michiganders during the continuing COVID-19 pandemic.  

The orders: 

The new orders take immediate effect. Executive Order 2020-73 (motor carriers) continues through June 2, while Executive Order 2020-74 continues through June 30.  

5/5/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer released the following statement after Pfizer Inc. announced that the first participants have been dosed in the U.S. in a clinical trial for the BNT162 vaccine program to prevent COVID-19 infection. The company also announced that initial manufacturing for the COVID-19 vaccine will be conducted in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

“This is great news for our families, our neighbors, and those serving on the front lines during this crisis,” said Governor Whitmer. “COVID-19 has shown how vulnerable our country is when it comes to supply chain and much of the lifesaving materials we need are manufactured out of the country. That’s why we are so proud that one of the largest pharmaceutical manufacturing facilities in the world is the Pfizer site right here in Kalamazoo, Michigan. In fact, Michigan has a strong history of vaccine development with the polio and anthrax vaccines. Pfizer is a great partner and the State of Michigan and our strong manufacturing roots stand ready to serve.”

5/4/20 – Governor Whitmer COVID Update for 5/4/20

5/4/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Directive 2020-5, creating the Michigan COVID-19 Office of Accountability within the State Budget Office. The Accountability Office will provide oversight of all spending to address this crisis, and must report regularly on its work to the governor and the state budget director. ED 2020-05.pdf

5/4/20 – More than $3.3 million in financial relief is going to 657 bar and restaurant owners across the state – a financial lifeline averaging over $5,000 for hard-hit hospitality businesses, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced today. The Michigan Liquor Control Commission (MLCC) is administrator of the governor’s spirits buyback program.

5/3/20 – Governor Whitmer Daily COVID Update for 5/3/20

5/3/20 – Governor Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-72, which extends until May 31, 2020 the rules regarding entry to care facilities designed to protect vulnerable populations and mitigate the spread of COVID-19. The order replaces the governor’s previous order, 2020-37. The order also requires employees of facilities covered by the order to wear face coverings while working within a facility. 2020-72 Emerg order – care facilities – re-issue.pdf

5/2/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-71, which extends existing safety measures to protect consumers and employees at grocery stores and pharmacies until May 29, 2020. The order also extends temporary relief from licensing requirements for food sellers and pharmacies. 

The executive order extends to May 29 conditions in Executive Order 2020-60, which established the following health and safety guidelines: 

  • Customers who can medically tolerate a face covering must wear one when entering a grocery store or pharmacy.
  • Grocery stores and pharmacies must allocate at least two hours per week of shopping time for vulnerable populations.
  • If an employee tests positive for COVID-19, the business must notify other employees without infringing on private health information. EO 2020-71 Emerg order – food sellers – re-issue.pdf

5/1/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-70 as part of her MI Safe Start plan. The executive order will allow the May 7 resumption of some types of work that present a very low risk of infection, including construction, real-estate activities, and work that is traditionally and primarily performed outdoors. EO 2020-70.pdf

4/30/20 – Today’s orders include: 

  • Executive Order 2020-66, which terminates the existing state of emergency and disaster declarations issued under the Emergency Management Act in Executive Order 2020-33. 
  • Executive Order 2020-67, which clarifies that a state of emergency remains in effect under the Emergency Powers of the Governor Act of 1945. The order is effective immediately and continues through May 28, 2020 at 11:59pm. The governor will evaluate the continuing need for this order prior to its expiration, and if she determines that an emergency no longer exists, will terminate or extend the state of emergency declared in this order. 
  • Executive Order 2020-68, which declares a state of emergency and a state of disaster across the State of Michigan under the Emergency Management Act of 1976. The state of emergency and state of disaster declared by this order will be effective through May 28, 2020 at 11:59pm, and the governor will evaluate the continuing need for the order prior to its expiration, terminate the states of emergency and disaster if the threat or danger has passed

/30/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-69 which extends her previous order that temporarily closes certain places of public accommodation such as theaters, bars, casinos, and more. In order to maintain social distancing the order also limits restaurants to carry-out and delivery orders.

This order does not restrict a place of business from offering food and beverage using delivery service, window service, walk-up service, drive-through service, or drive-up service. Places of public accommodation are encouraged to offer food and beverage service in one or more of those ways and use precautions to mitigate potential transmission of COVID-19, including social distancing and wearing as face covering. Restaurants may allow five people inside at a time to pick up orders, so long as they stay six feet apart from each other.

These restrictions do not apply to the following locations: office buildings, grocery stores, markets, food pantries, pharmacies, drug stores, and providers of medical equipment and supplies, health care facilities, residential care facilities, congregate care facilities, and juvenile justice facilities, warehouse and distribution centers, and industrial and manufacturing facilities.

Executive Order 2020-69 is effective immediately and extends until May 28, 2020.

4/30/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-65 to extend and clarify Executive Order 2020-35, which ordered all K-12 school buildings to close for instructional purposes to students for the remainder of the school year, and provided continuity of learning infrastructure by setting guidelines for remote learning. In addition to continuing the actions taken in the previous executive order, Executive Order 2020-65 also suspends in-person instruction of both the Great Start Readiness Program and early childhood programs for the reminder of the 2019-2020 school year. GSRP is Michigan’s state-funded preschool program. EO 2020-65 Emerg order – education – re-issue.pdf

4/29/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-64, which reaffirms the state’s commitment to equitable access to health care, and requires health care facilities to develop protocols that ensure non-discrimination in the event demands for critical health care resources exceed availability.  EO 2020-64 Emerg order.pdf

4/27/20 – Governor Whitmer Daily COVID-19 Update 4/27/20

4/27/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-63, which extends validity of existing personal protection orders that would otherwise expire during the continuing COVID-19 pandemic.  

Governor Whitmer’s order coincides with a Michigan Supreme Court administrative order extending the validity of personal protection orders until 90 days after Michigan’s emergency declaration is lifted. The orders takes immediate effect. 2020-63 Emerg order – PPO Extension.pdf

4/26/20 – Governor Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-62 which extends protections for vulnerable populations in Michigan’s county jails, local lockups and juvenile detention centers during the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The order replaces her previous order 2020-29 and details risk-reduction protocols that have been adopted and implemented by the Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC) and that county jails and local lockups are strongly encouraged to adopt. EO 2020-62 Emerg order – jails and prisons – reissue.pdf

4/26/20 – Governor Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-61, to extend and expand Executive Order 2020-30, which relaxes scope of practice laws to give hospitals and other health care facilities the flexibility they need to deploy qualified physicians, respiratory therapists, physician assistants, nurses, and other health care providers the ability to give the critical care needed to combat COVID-19.  EO 2020-61 Emerg order – scope of practice – re-issue.pdf

4/26/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-60 to establish strategies to reduce exposure to COVID-19 for both customers and employees. The order also provides temporary relief by suspending certain licensing requirements and regulations for food service industries.    

Under the order, customers are strongly encouraged to wear a face covering over their nose and mouth when entering a food establishment. Grocery stores and pharmacies must allocate at least two hours per week of shopping time for vulnerable populations. Additionally, if an employee tests positive for COVID-19, the establishment must notify other employees without infringing on private personal-health related information of an employee. EO 2020-60 Emerg order – food sellers.pdf

4/24/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed executive order 2020-59, extending her “Stay Home, Stay Safe” order through May 15. The new order will require people to wear homemade face coverings when they enter enclosed public spaces. It will also lift some restrictions on outdoor activities and allow some workers who perform previously suspended activities to go back to work. EO 2020-59.pdf   View One-Page Summary

4/24/20 – Michigan’s second alternate care facility at Suburban Collection Showplace (SCS) in Novi opens today to provide needed care to COVID-19 patients. The alternate care facility will be ready to accept patients starting Friday, April 24. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Detroit District led the 250,000 square foot conversion of the Suburban Collection Showplace convention center into a medical facility in 15 days.

4/24/20 – Today, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun will provide an update regarding the state’s response efforts to COVID-19. You can view the press conference at Twitter.com/MichStatePolice  OR Facebook.com/MichiganStatePolice OR on WLNS-TV 6. It will begin promptly at 11am.

4/23/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) today announce the creation of the MiMortgage Relief Partnership with over 200 of Michigan’s financial institutions to recognize and expand upon the measures that these institutions have been taking to assist customers to ensure that no one experiencing financial hardship due to COVID-19 will lose their home during this public health crisis.

For more information on COVID-19 related mortgage relief, see: www.michigan.gov/MiMortgageRelief or call DIFS toll-free at 877-999-6442.

4/22/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today issued Executive Order 2020-57, extending and building upon her earlier executive order expanding eligibility for unemployment benefits during the continuing COVID-19 pandemic.

The order expands the state’s workshare program, offering more tools to employers to reduce layoffs. It also extends unemployment benefits to workers who voluntarily left a job after accepting new employment but were unable to start their new position due to the pandemic. EO 2020-57 Emerg order – unemployment – re-issue.pdf

4/22/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-58, to extend the deadline of case-initiation in civil and probate matters, in accordance with Administrative Order 2020-3 of the Michigan Supreme Court.

The order broadly extends all deadlines pertaining to case initiation in civil and probate matters during the state of emergency and is effective immediately. Nothing in the order precludes a court from ordering an expedited response to a complaint or motion in order to hear and resolve an emergency matter that requires immediate attention. Additionally, nothing in the order alters the power of a court to entertain a motion, extend any deadline, or implement additional policies as needed. EO 2020-58 Emerg order – tolling.pdf

4/22/20 – Joint Public Unions Letter to House and Senate. As Congress is developing the next rescue package, SEIU, NEA, AFT, and AFSCME sent a joint letter to the House of Representatives and Senate emphasizing the critical importance of providing additional state and local investment in addition to policies to support frontline and essential workers. The letter also urges Congress to act beyond immediate rescue packages to rewrite the rules to form a more just, equitable society, one that truly values and invests in public schools, public health infrastructure and public services that sustain our communities.

4/21/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-56 extending her previous order which gives pharmacists increased operational capacity and increases access to prescriptions.

Executive Order 2020-56 continues to allow pharmacists to dispense emergency refills of prescriptions for up to 60 days’ worth of supply for patients and require insurers to cover early refills for up to 90 days’ worth of supply during the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The order will also allow pharmacists to dispense COVID-19 treatments according to government-approved protocols. EO 2020-56 Emerg order – pharmacies – reissue.pdf

4/21/20 – Governor Whitmer COVID Daily Update 4/21/20

4/21/20 – Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist II, former Lt. Governor Brian Calley and Michigan Association of CPAs President & CEO Bob Doyle, today called on federal officials to reach an agreement and authorize additional funding to the Paycheck Protection Program funds from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

More than 43,000 businesses in Michigan impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak received more than $10 billion in forgivable loans during the first round of PPP funding. Nationally, $349 billion was authorized for the initial round of PPP, all of which was committed by April 16 – less than two weeks after the application period opened – demonstrating the continued need for small business relief.

4/21/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today announced a partnership with CVS Health to provide drive-through Rapid COVID-19 Testing in Dearborn, part of the ongoing effort to expand testing for the virus statewide during the continuing pandemic.

Testing will be conducted in the parking lot of the Henry Ford Centennial Library, 16301 Michigan Ave., at no cost to eligible Michiganders. A doctor’s referral is not required.
The site will test 500-750 residents daily who are experiencing certain COVID-19-related symptoms and risk factors as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

4/20/20 – Governor Whitmer COVID Update 4/20/20

4/20/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order No. 2020-55 creating the Michigan Coronavirus Task Force on Racial Disparities.  

The COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately impacted communities of color throughout our state. While African Americans represent 13.6% of Michigan’s population, they represent a staggering 40% of the deaths from COVID-19. The task force will act in an advisory capacity to the Governor and study the causes of racial disparities in the impact of COVID-19 and recommend actions to immediately address such disparities and the historical and systemic inequities that underlie them. EO 2020-55 MI Coronavirus Task Force on Racial Disparities.pdf

4/20/20 – The Michigan National Guard has received a request to support the South Michigan Food Bank in Battle Creek. Approximately five Airmen from the 110th Wing, Battle Creek Air National Guard Base, started serving at this site beginning April 17. Support is expected to continue through mid-May.

The South Michigan Food Bank in Battle Creek will be the sixth food distribution site supported by the Michigan National Guard across the state. Since March 30, Michigan National Guard members have been serving at food bank locations in Comstock Park, Ann Arbor, Pontiac, and Flint. A location in Royal Oak was added on April 6.

4/17/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-54 and 2020-53 to extend her previous orders to suspend evictions and enhance restrictions on price gouging. EO 2020-53 Emerg order – price gouging – re-issue.pdf     EO 2020-54 Emerg order – evictions – re-issue.pdf

4/17/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced the Stay Home, Stay MIndful website in partnership with Headspace, a global leader in mindfulness and meditation, and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) to provide a new mental health resource for Michiganders to access for free during the COVID-19 pandemic facing both the state and nation.

Starting today, Michiganders across the state can access a specially-curated collection of science-backed, evidence-based guided meditations, along with at-home workouts that guide people through mindful exercises, sleep and kids content to help address rising stress and anxiety. Available at www.headspace.com/MI an internet connection is the only thing that is needed to access these tools to while you stay home and stay safe.

4/17/20 – Watch a video on how to file for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance

4/16/20 – Governors Gretchen Whitmer (MI), Mike DeWine (OH), Tony Evers (WI), Tim Walz (MN), JB Pritzker (IL), Eric Holcomb (IN), and Andy Beshear (KY) announced that they will work in close coordination to reopen the economy in the Midwest region. 

The governors said, “We are doing everything we can to protect the people of our states and slow the spread of COVID-19, and we are eager to work together to mitigate the economic crisis this virus has caused in our region. Here in the Midwest, we are bound  by our commitment to our people and the community. We recognize that our economies are all reliant on each other, and we must work together to safely reopen them so hardworking people can get back to work and businesses can get back on their feet. 

“Today, we are announcing that Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Illinois, Indiana, and Kentucky will work in close coordination to reopen our economies in a way that prioritizes our workers’ health. We look forward to working with experts and taking a fact-based, data-driven approach to reopening our economy in a way that protect families from the spread of COVID-19. 

“Our number one priority when analyzing when best to reopen our economy is the health and safety of our citizens. We will make decisions based on facts, science, and recommendations from experts in health care, business, labor, and education. 

We will closely examine at least these four factors when determining when best to reopen our economy: 

  • Sustained control of the rate of new infections and hospitalizations.
  • Enhanced ability to test and trace.
  • Sufficient health care capacity to handle resurgence.
  • And best practices for social distancing in the workplace.

4/16/20 – U.S. Senators Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters are holding a virtual town hall at 7 p.m. tonight. This hour long virtual town hall is to make sure you know what help is available, how to get assistance, and to answer your questions. You can tune in on my Facebook page or at clickondetroit.com.

Our town hall will be broadcast on Channels 2 (WJBK-TV), 4 (WDIV-TV), 7 (WXYZ-TV), 20 (WMYD-TV), 50 (WKBD-TV), 56 (WTVS-TV) and 62 (WWJ-TV). The broadcast will be shared with TV and radio stations across Michigan in partnership with the Michigan Association of Broadcasters and Michigan Association of Public Broadcasters. Thanks to our great local broadcasters for providing this public service.

4/15/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-51, which extends until May 13 expanded capacity for child care services for health care workers, first responders, and other members of the essential workforce providing critical infrastructure to Michiganders during the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis. The order provides temporary and limited relief from certain regulatory restrictions regarding child care services and facilitates the use of certain property for child care services. EO 2020-51 Emerg order – child care – reissue.pdf

4/14/20 – Below is a statement from Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer on an $89.4 million federal grant that will help K-12 schools, colleges and universities hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic continue providing educational services. The Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund, which is part of the federal CARES Act, is administered by the U.S. Department of Education and was announced on Tuesday. Funding may be used to provide emergency grants to schools, colleges, and other educational organizations.

“It’s never been more important to ensure every Michigan student has access to a high-quality education, and this funding will help our continued efforts to provide remote and other critical educational services to all students in every corner of our state during the ongoing pandemic,” Governor Whitmer said. “In the weeks ahead, I will identify strategies that ensure this federal funding provides much-needed support to our schools hit hardest during this unprecedented crisis.”

4/14/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Orders 2020-48 and 2020-49, which extend two executive orders signed last month.

These executive orders:

  • Relax the requirements of the Open Meetings Act to allow public bodies to conduct meetings remotely while facilitating public participation, EO 2020-48.pdf
  • Relax regulatory requirements on hospitals and care facilities in order to ensure that hospitals have the people and facilities they need to provide care to COVID-19 patients. EO 2020-49.pdf

4/14/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer released the following statement after Hyundai Motor America announced that the city of Detroit Department of Health will receive a $100,000 grant and 10,000 test kits to help combat the spread of COVID-19. This is part of Hyundai’s expansion of its support for COVID-19 drive-thru testing to 22 hospitals nationwide with $4 million in grants as well as an in-kind donation of 65,000 COVID-19 tests through its Hyundai Hope On Wheels program. 

4/14/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer released the following statement on Amway’s donations of personal protective equipment (PPE) to area health care facilities:

“In the past month, we’ve seen Michigan businesses and their employees step up to protect their communities from the spread of COVID-19,” said Governor Whitmer. “Amway has really stepped up to help keep Kent County families and health care workers safe during this time. I’m eager to work with them and every other business that wants to contribute their time and machinery to helping us fight this virus. This is an all hands on deck moment for our state, and we’re working with anyone and everyone to get the personal protective equipment our front line health care workers need to stay safe and save lives.”

As of April 9, Amway employees distributed nearly 28,000 units of hand sanitizer to area hospitals, clinics, senior homes and more. Amway has also worked hard to secure area hospitals disinfectant wipes and secure hygiene kits for homeless people in Kent County. The business is also flying a steady stream of N95 masks to Michigan over the next few weeks.

4/13/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today applauded Michigan’s congressional delegation for securing $256 million in airport grants in the CARES Act. The Federal Aviation Administration funding will support airports experiencing severe economic disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The grants will be distributed to airports to prevent, prepare for and respond to impacts from the crisis. In total, more than 90 airports in Michigan will receive funding from the CARES Act.

4/13/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-47, temporarily extending the expiration of valid driver’s licenses, state identification cards and commercial vehicle registrations that would otherwise expire during the state’s COVID-19 emergency declaration. The order, which takes effect April 13 at 11:59 p.m., temporarily extends Commercial vehicle registrations, including temporary registrations set to expire on or after March 1, 2020 to June 30.  Driver’s licenses, learner’s permits and commercial driver’s licenses set to expire between March 1 and May 31, to June 30. EO 2020-47.pdf

4/13/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Orders 2020-43, 2020-44 and 2020-45, which extend three Executive Orders signed last month. The Executive Orders:

  • Confirm that various places of public accommodation remain closed to the public for the time being and that restaurants must continue to limit service to carry-out and delivery orders; EO 2020-43.pdf
  • Maintain relief from weight and other delivery-related restrictions for vehicles carrying essential supplies to mitigate the spread of COVID-19;  EO 2020-44.pdf
  • Continue to allow certain state administrative hearings to be held by video conference or phone in place of in-person hearings.  EO 2020-45.pdf

4/13/20 – Gov. Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-46, tasking the Michigan Liquor Control Commission (MLCC) with initiating a spirits buy-back program to offer financial relief to bars and restaurants with on-premises liquor licenses affected by Executive Order 2020-9 during the continuing COVID-19 crisis. EO 2020-46.pdf

4/13/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer, along with a coalition of governors from Delaware, Illinois, Maine, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin sent a letter to U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Seema Verma to ask that the Administration reconsider its decision and take swift action to allow for a special enrollment period of at least 30 days on the federal health care exchange. In the face of the worst public health crisis in modern history, it is imperative that every step be taken to expand access to affordable health care for those in need.  ACA Special Enrollment Letter 4.13.2020.pdf

4/12/20 – Governor Whitmer COVID-19 Daily Update

4/10/20 – Michigan’s self-employed workers, gig workers, 1099-independent contractors and low-wage workers affected by COVID-19 can apply for federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) beginning Monday, April 13 at 8AM. Under the federal CARES Act, workers on state unemployment have already begun receiving the set $600 federal weekly payment in addition to their state benefit amount. Michigan is one of the first states to begin sending the $600 payment. View the complete story

4/10/20 – The Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) announced that the state has received agreements from nearly all of the state’s health insurance companies to waive cost-sharing, including copays, deductibles, and coinsurance for coronavirus (COVID-19) testing and treatments. The Whitmer Administration and DIFS had worked with insurers to waive these costs.  View complete story


4/10/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today announced the dates for a special election in the
4th District of the Michigan House of Representatives to fill the vacancy of former Representative Isaac Robinson, following his passing on March 29. A special primary election to fill the vacancy will be held on August 4, 2020, and the general election will be held on November 3, 2020.   

4/9/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer created the Michigan Coronavirus Task Force on Racial Disparities. The task force, chaired by Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist II, will consist of leaders across state government and health care professionals from communities most impacted by the spread of coronavirus. The task force will hold it’s first meeting this week. As of today, over 40% of COVID-19 deaths in Michigan are African Americans, but only 14% of Michiganders are African Americans. The Michigan Coronavirus Task Force on Racial Disparities will provide the governor with recommendations on how to address this disparity as we work to slow the spread of COVID-19 in our state.

4/9/20 – Governor Whitmer signed executive order 2020-42, extending her prior “Stay Home, Stay Safe” order through the end of April. As with the prior order, Executive Order 2020-42 limits gatherings and travel and requires all workers who are not necessary to sustain or protect life to stay home. Executive Order 2020-42 also imposes more stringent limitations on stores to reduce foot traffic, slow the spread of the coronavirus, and save lives EO 2020-42.pdf   Press Conference PowerPoint: PPT 4.9.20 Final.pdf

4/9/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today announced a partnership of health care providers providing critical support, staffing and resources at the TCF Regional Care Center, scheduled to accept its first 25 patients this Friday, April 10. The partnership includes Henry Ford Health System, McLaren Health Care, Beaumont Health and the Detroit Medical Center.

4/8/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-41, which will protect the health and safety of Michiganders by reducing unnecessary in-person contact, through the use of electronic signatures, remote notarizations, remote witness attestations and acknowledgments, and remote visitations. Executive Order 2020-41 is effective immediately and continues through May 6, 2020 at 11:59 pm. EO 2020-41 Emerg order – notaries.pdf

4/8/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-40, which waives International Fuel Tax Association (IFTA) credentialing requirements and ensures emergency medical supplies, sanitary supplies and key personnel can continue to flow into Michigan during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. EO 2020-40.pdf

4/7/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-39, temporarily suspending requirements regarding licensing and regulation of emergency medical services. Executive Order 2020-39 takes effect immediately and will remain in place until the end of the governor’s declared emergency or until otherwise rescinded. EO 2020-39.pdf

4/6/20 – The State of Michigan has selected the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi as the site of a second alternate care facility to expand medical capacity during the state’s response to COVID-19. This decision comes days after Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced the state’s first alternate care facility at TCF Center in Detroit. After conversion, the Suburban Collection Showplace will provide 250,000 sq. ft. and bed space to accommodate up to 1,000 COVID-19 cases.

4/6/20 – The Michigan Secretary of State has put together a Frequently Asked Questions sheet concerning their services during this period of office closure. COVID-19-OFFICE-CLOSURE-FAQ_684644_7

4/5/20 – Governor Whitmer Daily COVID-19 Update

4/5/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-38, which relaxes requirements for responding to FOIA requests made by mail or fax during the COVID-19 emergency. This action will protect workers who handle FOIA requests by allowing public bodies to defer portions of requests that would require workers to report to work in-person. The Executive Order takes effect immediately and ends at 11:59 p.m. on June 4, 2020. EO 2020-38.pdf

4/5/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed executive order 2020-37, which renews the restrictions on entry into care facilities and juvenile justice facilities the governor issued on March 14, 2020 until May 3, 2020. The order now requires facilities to use best efforts to facilitate remote visitations between individuals under their care and their loved ones, using phone or video conferencing software.

The order also clarifies that “residential care facilities” include, but are not limited to, homes for the aged, nursing homes, adult foster care facilities, hospice facilities, substance abuse disorder residential facilities, independent living facilities, and assisted living facilities. EO 2020-37.pdf

4/5/20 – The Michigan National Guard has received a request to support the Forgotten Harvest Food Bank in Royal Oak. Approximately 10 Airmen from the 127th Wing, Selfridge Air National Guard Base, will serve at this site beginning April 6. Support is expected to continue through the end of April.

Nearly 450 Michigan National Guard members have been called to active service to aid Michigan’s response since March 18.  Across nine counties, members of the National Guard are supporting requests from local communities and state agencies. Other response activities include logistics support for medical equipment, medical screening operations, planning augmentation, and support for construction of alternate care facilities. The Michigan National Guard has an additional 6,600 members ready to assist at the request of Michigan’s communities.

4/3/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-36, prohibiting all employers from discharging, disciplining, or otherwise retaliating against an employee for staying home from work if they or one of their close contacts tests positive for COVID-19 or has symptoms of the disease. Executive Order 2020-36 also strengthens the governor’s “Stay Home, Stay Safe” executive order by declaring that it is the public policy of the state that all Michiganders who test positive or show symptoms, or who live with someone who tests positive or shows symptoms, should not leave their homes unless absolutely necessary.

Executive Order 2020-36 takes effect immediately and will remain in place until the end of the governor’s declared emergency or until otherwise rescinded.  EO 2020-36.pdf     COVID-19 When is it Safe to Leave Home .pdf

4/2/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-35, which orders all K-12 school buildings to close for the remainder of the school year — unless restrictions are lifted — and ensures continuing of learning by setting guidelines for remote learning. District facilities may be used by public school employees and contractors for the purposes of facilitating learning at a distance while also practicing social distancing.

School districts will have the flexibility to adopt a balanced calendar for the 2019-2020 school year and/or to begin the 2020-2021 school year before Labor Day without having to seek additional approval. Teachers and school employees will be paid for the remainder of the school year. Student teachers will still be able to get a temporary certification and current teachers will still be able to get their certifications renewed, even if they can’t meet all the requirements due to COVID-19.  EO 2020-35.pdf

4/2/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-34, to clarify the temporary restrictions she placed on non-essential veterinary procedures as part of Executive Order 2020-32.  EO 2020-34 Emerg order – vet services – reissue.pdf

4/1/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-33, which recognizes the expanded scope of economic, educational, and civic dislocation caused by the COVID-19, and equips the administration to address fully the devastation caused by virus. The order also formally declares a state of disaster. EO 2020-33.pdf

In addition to issuing Executive Order 2020-33, Governor Whitmer sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey and House Speaker Lee Chatfield requesting a concurrent resolution extending this declared state of emergency and disaster under Executive Order 20-33 by 70 days from the date of the resolution. Letter, Gov. Whitmer to Speaker Chatfield and Leader Shirkey (4.1.20).pdf

4/1/20 – Approximately 20 members of the Michigan National Guard will assist the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) with logistics support to establish a Federal Medical Station (FMS) at TCF Center, March 31 – April 1.
Michigan National Guard members will augment FEMA, assisting with inventory of equipment and supplies as the FMS is established as an ad hoc site to receive COVID-19 cases during a period of surge demand. The FMS received by the State of Michigan supports the 1,000-bed alternate care site being established at the TCF Center in partnership with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

3/31/20 – Overview of Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act from SEIU International

3/30/20 – Today, President Trump authorized the use of National Guard members under Title 32, United States Code, section 502(f), granting Governor Whitmer’s request for a formal Mission Assignment (MA) to allocate and order up to 3,000 members of the Michigan Army and Air National Guard for up to 90 days to perform humanitarian missions across the state.

Michigan’s National Guard, under Governor Whitmer’s command and control, will perform humanitarian missions across the state, such as helping run mobile screening facilities, distributing food and medical supplies, ensuring resiliency of supply lines, disinfecting public spaces, and supporting public safety when required. Presidential Authorization for National Guard Deployment

3/30/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-32, which places a temporary restriction on non-essential veterinary procedures during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The order prohibits all non-essential veterinary procedures starting on March 31, 2020, and encourages veterinarians and veterinary technicians to practice telemedicine as much as possible to help stop the spread of COVID-19. EO 2020-32 Emerg order – vet services.pdf

3/30/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-31, suspending the April 1 requirement for lower vapor pressure gasoline. The order takes effect immediately and expires on April 30, 2020.

To ensure the health and safety of the public, gasoline supplies must remain available to support essential functions during the COVID-19 pandemic. This public health emergency has caused an unexpected oversupply of higher volatility gasoline, which is occupying bulk fuel storage systems and preventing many distributors from shifting their supplies to lower volatility gasoline that meets vapor pressure requirements for sale in Michigan beginning April 1, 2020.

Stocks of winter-blend gasoline, which is sold in Michigan prior to April 1, are ample and available to supplement the undersupply of April-compliant gasoline stocks during this emergency. EO 2020-31.pdf

3/30/20 – The Michigan National Guard has received a request to aid Food Banks in four communities across the state, including Ann Arbor, Comstock Park, Flint, and Pontiac. Approximately 10 Michigan National Guard members will be serving at each site. Support to the Food Banks is scheduled to begin March 30 and is expected to continue through mid-April.

The food distribution sites requested Michigan National Guard personnel to assist with mobile food distribution, which serves between 300-600 Michigan families daily. Guard members will direct traffic for the drive-through distribution site and assist with packing bags of fruit and handing bags to cars. The guard members will perform their duties with personnel protective equipment to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, including gloves and hand sanitizer.

Since March 18, guard members have provided logistics support to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, assembling and loading critical personal protective gear such as gowns and face shields. There are also members of the Michigan National Guard serving the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans and the D.J. Jacobetti Home for Veterans in Marquette. Their support includes temperature screening of all employees before they enter the homes, and ensuring screening protocols are being followed to protect resident veterans from the spread of COVID-19.

3/30/20 – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Directive 2020-3, temporarily restricting discretionary spending by state departments and agencies while they work to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in Michigan. The governor also signed Executive Directive 2020-4, temporarily suspending hiring, creating new positions, filling vacant positions, transfers, and promotions within the executive branch of state government.
ED 2020-3.pdf     ED 2020-4.pdf

3/30/20 – Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, Sen. Mike Shirkey, Sen. Jim Ananich, Rep. Lee Chatfield, and Rep. Christine Greig issued the following joint statement on the signing of two supplemental budget bills that provide $150 million in new state funding in the current fiscal year for the response to COVID-19.

“Residents across the great state of Michigan need to know that the Executive and Legislative branches of state government are working together to do whatever is necessary to ensure an effective response to COVID-19. Today’s signing of two supplemental budget bills will provide new state funding of $150 million to bolster response efforts. To date, the state has already expended more than $130 million to secure more than 20 million masks, more than 2,000 ventilators, nearly 9 million ounces of hand sanitizer, more than 255,000 boxes of gloves, 2.4 million gowns, more than 2,000 beds, 210,000 testing supplies, 3,000 thermometers, 185,000 face shields, 22,000 cartons of disinfecting wipes, as well as other needed supplies. The additional funding provided today, along with the supplies and funding provided by the federal government, helps ensure that Michigan has the necessary resources to save lives and slow the spread of COVID-19.”

The supplemental appropriations are contained in SB 151, sponsored by Sen. Jim Stamas, and HB 4729, sponsored by Rep. Shane Hernandez. The vetoes in SB 151, totaling nearly $80 million in the state’s General Fund, were agreed to by both branches of government so that funding could be reprioritized for COVID-19.

3/29/20 – Governor Whitmer Daily COVID-19 Update

3/29/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-30, which relaxes scope of practice laws to give hospitals and other health-care facilities the flexibility they need to successfully deploy qualified physician assistants, nurses and other health care providers to combat COVID-19. EO 2020-30.pdf

3/29/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-29, which protects vulnerable populations in Michigan’s county jails, local lockups and juvenile detention centers during the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The Executive Order details risk-reduction protocols that have been adopted and implemented by the Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC) and that county jails and local lockups are strongly encouraged to adopt. EO 2020-29.pdf

3/29/20 – Today Governor Gretchen Whitmer accepted the recommendation of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Detroit District, for an alternate care facility conversion at the TCF Center in Detroit. The decision comes as Michigan continues its effort to address imminent capacity issues resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. FEMA will fund construction and supply the site which will have approximately 900 bed spaces.

3/28/20 – Gov. Whitmer Daily COVID-19 Update

3/28/20 – Today Gov. Whitmer and MDHHS launched a new volunteer website, www.michigan.gov/fightcovid19, where trained medical professionals can register to serve their fellow Michiganders by assisting hospitals in fighting COVID-19. Other state residents also can use the site to find out how they can help in their local communities, give blood, donate money or needed medical supplies, or assist public health officials in tracking infections.

3/28/20 – President Trump approved Governor Whitmer’s request for a Major Disaster declaration in Michigan. The declaration means that Michigan is now eligible for participation in the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) programming to provide relief for Michiganders impacted by the COVID-19 virus and measures to slow the spread of the virus. While Michigan made a broad request for aid in every Individual Assistance and Public Assistance program from the Individual Assistance category, funding was approved for the Crisis Counseling Program and funding for Emergency Protective Measures from the Public Assistance Category was also approved. 

3/28/20 – Michigan Receives 112,800 N95 Masks from Strategic National Stockpile. Today, Gov. Whitmer announced on Twitter that the State of Michigan received a shipment of 112,800 N95 masks from the strategic national stockpile this morning, with an additional shipment of 8,000 masks on the way. Gov. Whitmer Twitter Announcement

3/27/20 – Governor Whitmer COVID-19 Daily Update

3/27/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-27, encouraging Michiganders to vote absentee by allowing the Department of State to assist local jurisdictions in mailing absentee ballot applications to every registered voter, and to provide absentee ballots directly to new registrants. Local jurisdictions will still need to keep at least one polling place open for those who wish to vote in-person or are unable to vote by mail. EO 2020-27.pdf

3/27/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-26, which pushes all April 2020 state and city income tax filing deadlines in Michigan to July 2020, as a part of continued efforts to help Michiganders during the COVID-19 pandemic. EO 2020-26.pdf

3/26/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer sent a letter to the president requesting a major disaster declaration during the COVID-19 pandemic.

If granted in full, among other things, a major disaster declaration would help the state provide meals to families who need them and provide rental assistance and temporary housing to families. It would also allow the state to provide counseling and therapy for Michigan residents whose mental health is affected by COVID-19, whether they or a loved one gets sick or hospitalized. Additionally, the declaration would provide much-needed additional capacity and funding to the state in the event Michigan needs to quickly set up field hospitals or other facilities.

Request for Presidential Disaster Declaration.pdf
Letter Gov. Whitmer (Mich.) – Major Disaster Declaration Request.pdf

3/26/20 – SEIU International has created a top line summary of the COVID-19 Federal Legislative Package #3, which passed the Senate on a 96-0 vote last yesterday evening. We expect the House to pass the bill on Friday. 3-26-2020 COVID-19 Legislative Package #3 Summary

3/25/20 – Governor Whitmer Daily COVID-19 Update

3/25/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-25, which will allow pharmacists to dispense emergency refills of prescriptions for up to 60 days’ worth of supply for patients and require insurers to cover these emergency refills during the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The order will also allow pharmacists to dispense COVID-19 treatments according to government-approved protocols. EO 2020-25.pdf

3/25/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-24, clarifying how the expansion of eligibility for unemployment benefits during the COVID-19 will work.  EO 2020-24 Emergency Order -Unemployment.pdf

3/25/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer  today signed Executive Order 2020-23, which temporarily allows the Michigan Employment Relations Commission, Unemployment Insurance Agency, and other administrative hearings to be held by video conference or phone in place of in-person hearings. The order also temporarily allows e-signatures in place of written signatures on related documents. EO 2020-23.pdf

3/24/20 – Governor Whitmer Daily COVID-19 Update

3/24/20 – SEIU’s legal department explains the paid sick and paid leave provisions included in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA, which was signed into law on March 18th and is different than the bill that is currently being debated in the Senate). There are still a lot of open questions on how the federal government, states, and employers will interpret and implement rules. SEIU will continue to monitor and give more information when available. View the provisions here.

3/24/20 – Governor Whitmer Calls on Michiganders, Businesses to Donate Essential Medical Supplies, Personal Protective Equipment to Hospitals. With many hospitals throughout Michigan facing potential shortages of face masks and other essential medical supplies and personal protective equipment, Governor Gretchen Whitmer called upon Michiganders and businesses to donate items needed most by hospitals and medical providers.  

Donations of essential items will be used to meet medical providers’ most pressing needs during the COVID-19 pandemic. Below are the material donations most needed by hospitals. This list will be updated as efforts continue to progress. 

Items most needed at this time 

  • Hospital Gowns 
  • Ventilators
  • Sanitizer (Hand / Wipe)
  • Gloves  
  • Surgical Masks
  • Masks N95-N100
  • No-Touch Thermometers 

Donations can be directed to the Michigan Community Service Commission at COVID19donations@michigan.gov or 517-335-4295.  

3/23/20 – Governor Whitmer Daily COVID-19 Update

3/23/20 – Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s office issued the following statement today from Press Secretary Tiffany Brown on the governor’s “Stay Home, Stay Safe” executive order:

“Gov. Whitmer is committed to ensuring that Michigan students have access to the food they need during the COVID-19 pandemic. Under the governor’s executive order, K-12 school food services are considered critical infrastructure and should continue. The governor deeply appreciates the vital work that our frontline school employees are doing every day to ensure that our kids have the food they need while the order is in effect.”

3/23/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed the “Stay Home, Stay Safe” Executive Order (EO 2020-21), directing all Michigan businesses and operations to temporarily suspend in-person operations that are not necessary to sustain or protect life. The order also directs Michiganders to stay in their homes unless they’re a part of that critical infrastructure workforce, engaged in an outdoor activity, or performing tasks necessary to the health and safety of themselves or their family, like going to the hospital or grocery store.  EO 2020-21 Stay Home, Stay Safe.pdf

3/22/20 – Governor Whitmer Daily COVID-19 Update

3/21/20 – Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-20, which makes clear that all facilities that provide non-essential personal care services must temporarily close. These services include hair, nail, tanning, massage, spa, tattoo, body art and piercing services, and similar services that require individuals to be within 6 feet of each other. This order does not apply to services necessary for medical treatment as determined by a licensed medical provider. EO 2020-20 Emerg Order – Public Accommodations.pdf

3/20/20 – Governors Gretchen Whitmer and Mike DeWine (R-OH) called on President Trump and Congress to ensure the automotive industry and the hundreds of thousands of jobs it supports are able to weather the rapid economic deceleration brought on by the coronavirus (COVID-19) global pandemic. MI.OH.Auto Industry Support Letter.March 2020.pdf

3/20/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-19, which allows tenants and mobile home owners to remain in their homes during the COVID-19 pandemic even if they are unable to stay current on their rent. The order also relieves courts from certain statutory restrictions to enable them to stay eviction-related proceedings until after the COVID-19 emergency has passed. The executive order takes effect immediately and will remain in effect until April 17 at 11:59 p.m. EO 2020-19 Emerg Order – Eviction Prohibition.pdf

3/20/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-18, which included minor clarifications of her executive order that temporarily imposed enhanced restrictions on the excessive pricing of goods, materials, emergency supplies, and consumer food items. EO 2020-18 Emerg Order – Price Gouging.pdf

3/20/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun will provide an update on the state’s response to COVID-19 on Friday, March 20th at approximately 4:30 p.m.

Social Media and Live Streaming: Twitter.com/MichStatePolice / Facebook.com/MichiganStatePolice /  or

TV 7 (Detroit) at www.wxyz.com

3/20/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-17, which imposes temporary restrictions on non-essential medical and dental procedures beginning as soon as possible but no later than March 21, 2020 at 5:00pm. EO 2020-17 Emerg Order -Nonessential Procedures.pdf

3/19/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer Daily Update

3/19/20 – Yesterday, Governor Gretchen Whitmer wrote a letter to President Trump requesting federal funding for the use of Michigan’s National Guard to be dedicated to COVID-19 response and support. Under the Governor’s command and control, the Michigan National Guard would be used to aid in the distribution of resources like food and supplies to families who have been impacted by the spread of COVID-19. Letter Gov. Whitmer to Pres. Trump .pdf

3/19/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced today the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has approved her request for a statewide Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) declaration, opening the opportunity to small businesses to access low-interest loans from the SBA.  View more of the story   

3/18/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer Daily Update

3/18/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-16 to expand the capacity for child care services for health care workers, first responders, and other members of the essential workforce providing critical infrastructure to Michiganders during the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis. The order provides temporary and limited relief from certain regulatory restrictions regarding child care services and facilitates the use of certain property for child care services. EO 2020-16 Emerg order – Child Care.pdf

3/18/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-15 to order a temporarily change to the Open Meetings Act to allow public bodies to conduct their meetings electronically, while also facilitating public participation, until April 15, 2020 at 11:59PM. EO 2020-15 Emergency Order – OMA.pdf

3/18/230 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-14, extending the deadline for Michigan residents to pay back taxes and avoid foreclosure on their property during the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. EO 2020-14 Emergency Order.pdf

3/18/20 – What’s Happening? – Two DOC Employees Test Positive For Coronavirus: Two state Department of Corrections workers, 1 Probation Agent and 1 Corrections Officer, have tested positive for coronavirus. These employees work in Jackson County and the Detroit Detention Center.

May Election Options: Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson is exploring options for the May 5 elections to not put public health at risk. This could include voting by mail or moving ballot issues to the August election.

DHHS Closing Lobbies Except For Appointments: All Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) lobbies will close to the public and go on an appointment basis. Residents will no longer be required to visit a DHHS office to receive state assistance benefits during the COVID-19 outbreak. People can use www.michigan.gov/MIBridges to submit necessary paperwork, review benefit information, report changes, apply for benefits and complete the process for redetermining eligibility for assistance. Individuals may also call DHHS offices.

3/18/20 – Legislature Approves Coronavirus Response Bills.  The Michigan Legislature passed $125 million in additional money for coronavirus response. Check out the bills here: HB 4729      SB 373

3/17/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today formally requested the U.S. Small Business Administration to issue an Economic Injury Disaster declaration for the state. View more of the story.

3/17/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-13, to temporarily lift regulatory requirements on hospitals and care facilities and help ensure an adequate number of health care providers available to patients during the spread of Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). EO 2020-13.pdf

3/17/20 – SEIU International has provided information for those members whose job it is to clean and sanitize our workplaces in this crisis. This information may also be of interest to the whole membership on best practices of cleaning away the virus. Checklist on Coronavirus     10 STEPS TO PREVENTING Janitorial Specific

3/16/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-12, temporarily lifting weight and other delivery-related restrictions for vehicles carrying essential supplies to mitigate the spread of Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). The executive order is effective immediately and extends until Monday, April 13 at 11:59pm. EO 2020-12.pdf

3/16/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-11, to prohibit all events over 50 people or assemblages in shared indoor spaces over 50 people beginning Tuesday, March 17 at 9:00am.  EO 2020-11 Emergency Order – Assemblages .pdf

3/16/20 – Executive Order 2020-10 to temporarily expand eligibility for unemployment benefits. 

3/16/20 – Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-9, which temporarily closes theaters, bars, and casinos, and limits restaurants to carry-out and delivery orders effective at 3:00 p.m. today. EO 2020-9.pdf

3/16/20 – Governor Whitmer Coronavirus Daily Update 3/16/20

3/15/20 – Executive Order from Governor Whitmer Concerning Price Gouging

3/13/20 – Executive Order from Governor Whitmer Concerning Events and Large Assemblage Prohibition and Temporary School Closings

3/13/20 – State Employees Use of Sick Leave – SPDOC 20-02

3/11/20 – Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Interim Recommendations for COVID-19 Community Mitigation Strategies

 

View all of Governor Whitmer’s press releases here.

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