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Coalition Updates

                                         

2021

April

Below, please find this week’s Michigan government update.  The update will continue to be published every Friday.  If you would like to add or remove individuals on this update, please reply to this email.

 

Michigan Legislature

Work on the budget continued this week as budget subcommittees began reporting their recommendations to each chamber’s appropriations committee.  Many in Lansing were surprised by a major change in many budgets- a shift to a quarterly basis for most departments and agencies.  The move is designed to improve oversight of taxpayer dollars, but was panned by many observers.  Budget highlights include:

 

  • Changing the funding model for colleges and universities to receive appropriations based on a funding formula that uses a three-year average of fiscal year equated students multiplied by an established funding per FYES measure and 2020-21 funding levels
  • Increases in basic foundation allowance and per-pupil funding for K-12 education
  • $77 million to increase public assistance for child development and care by increasing the program’s income entry threshold to 160% of the federal poverty level and increase the hourly reimbursement rate to 15%
  • $37.5 million for nursing home support
  • 10% increase in funding for local public health departments
  • $1 million GF for infrastructure improvements at the Michigan Career and Technical Institute
  • Funding for 120 new MSP troopers
  • $500,000 for officer de-escalation training
  • $4 million to address UIA fraud
  • $25 million for PFAS cleanup
  • $1 million for a dam safety grant program

 

House Appropriations Chairman Thomas Albert (R-Lowell) also announced a $13 billion supplemental spending plan to distribute money given to the state by the federal government.  Highlights include:

 

  • $743 million for food assistance and $481 million to assist with rent, utility and energy bills
  • $4.8 billion for students and schools and $1.4 billion for early childhood care
  • $400 million to help move people off unemployment, $686 million for local governments and $205 million for renovations at mental health facilities
  • Funding for hazard pay for some state employees and others working on the front lines during COVID
  • $1.2 billion for roads, including $700 million to pay down bond debt, $250 million for water and sewer replacement grants and $150 million for rural broadband
  • Funding for airports, PFAS pollution cleanup and high lake levels
  • $350 million to the Rainy Day Fund, $595 million to pay the Flint water settlement and $20 million to payoff the Michigan Venture fund
  • $50 million "to right size state government and accelerate the state's consolidation of office space.”

 

The House Oversight Committee issued a subpoena to former MDHHS Director Robert Gordon this week as part of a broader look into the Whitmer administration’s use of separation agreements and payments to departing state officials.  Former Director Gordon has said that he will honor the subpoena.

 

Michigan Executive and State Departments

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer came under fire this week after it was revealed that she took a trip to Florida to visit her father more than a month ago, directly contradicting administration guidance on travel for the public.

 

Gov. Whitmer appointed Henry L. Williams as the new executive director of the Michigan Gaming Control Board, commencing after approval of the Senate.  His terms lasts for six years.  Mr. Williams currently serves as deputy director of the Casino Operations Division at the Michigan Gaming Control Board.

 

COVID-19

  • The total number of confirmed cases in the state is now 809,591, including 17,139 deaths.  So far, 6,280,313 vaccination doses have been administered.  A graph of the overall case trends is available here.
  • What to do, and not do, with your COVID-19 vaccine card
  • MDHHS announced a partnership with MDOT to implement a Travel Points Testing program this spring.  The program will bring quick and free testing to several Michigan Welcome Centers and airports throughout the state.

 

Client News

  • Kelley Cawthorne is pleased to announce that we are beginning to work with ActivePure Technology, whose devices are proven to neutralize pathogens, including the virus that causes COVID-19.  More information on ActivePure Technology is available here.
  • AT&T announced a $2 billion, 3-year commitment to help address the digital divide through low-cost broadband offers, participation in the Emergency Broadband Benefit, and community investment.  More information is available here.

 

Elections

 

Other

Below, please find this week’s Michigan government update.  The update will continue to be published every Friday.  If you would like to add or remove individuals on this update, please reply to this email.

 

Michigan Legislature

The House Oversight Committee voted on a 6-2-1, party-line vote to give itself subpoena power to look into the departure of former Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Director Robert Gordon.

 

Sen. Adam Hollier (D-Detroit) and Sen. Jeremy Moss were announced as co-chairs of the Senate Democrats’ 2022 campaign team.  Sen. Winnie Brinks (D-Grand Rapids) and Sen. Sylvia Santana (D-Detroit) were announced as finance co-chairs.

 

The Livingston County Prosecutor’s Office has authorized an arrest warrant for Rep. Jewell Jones (D-Inkster) in connection with an alleged drunken driving crash.  It is also alleged that Rep. Jones fought with police.  He is charged with four counts of resisting arrest, one count of operating with a high blood alcohol content (also known as the state’s “super drunk” law), one count of operating while intoxicated, one count of possession of a weapon under the influence, and one count of reckless driving.

 

The Senate Fiscal Agency released its March Monthly Revenue Report.  The report is attached.

 

Michigan Executive and State Departments

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced this week changes to protocols for state contract bids to implement the Michigan Jobs First Executive Directive.  Under the new protocols, bidders must certify their labor and environmental compliance records as well as that they have properly classified their employees.  The new protocols are aimed at companies that classify full-time employees as independent contractors.

 

Gov. Whitmer continued to respond this week to criticisms that senior administration officials travelled out of state for vacations, despite state guidance not to do so.  Although it was acknowledged that members of the administration travelled to Alabama and Florida for vacations with their families, the trips appear to have occurred in a socially distant manner.

 

COVID-19

 

Client News

  • The McLaren Greater Lansing Foundation is beginning a yearlong series of Gratituesday Webinars!  This month’s webinar takes place on May 18th at 3:00 p.m. and features Foundation Vice President Lynn Griffor and Special Events Coordinator Rachel Turek, who will provide an update on new hospital construction and philanthropy.  Registration is available here.

 

Elections

 

Other

 

Please reach out if you have any questions and we will continue to keep you apprised of further updates. 

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Below, please find this week’s Michigan government update.  The update will continue to be published every Friday.  If you would like to add or remove individuals on this update, please reply to this email.

 

Michigan Legislature

The Michigan Legislature adjourned for spring break on Thursday, March 25.  It will return to session on Tuesday, April 13.

 

Rep. Jewell Jones (D-Inkster) was arrested on Tuesday in connection with a traffic crash on I-96.  Charges have not yet been filed in the incident.

 

Michigan Executive and State Departments

The State Budget Office has released an overview of the state impact of the American Rescue Plan, the latest round of federal COVID-19 spending.  The overview is attached.

 

In a press conference today, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer called on high schools to voluntarily pause in-person learning and sports for two weeks following spring break.  The governor also asked Michiganders to avoid indoor dining.  The call comes after a large surge in coronavirus cases in the state, the largest since the first surge approximately one year ago.

 

COVID-19

  • The total number of confirmed cases in the state is now 731,131, including 16,426 deaths.  So far, 5,132,443 vaccination doses have been administered.  A graph of the overall case trends is available here.
  • Vaccine eligibility has expanded to all Michiganders age 16 and up.  Vaccines are available at local health departments and hospitals, pharmacies, and other sites such as the West Michigan Vaccine Clinic at DeVos Place in Grand Rapids and the Regional Community Vaccination Site at Ford Field in Detroit.  For assistance navigating the vaccine process, call (888) 535-6136.
  • Myths and facts about the COVID vaccine shot as Michigan opens access to all

 

Elections

 

Other

 

Please reach out if you have any questions and we will continue to keep you apprised of further updates. 

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Below, please find this week’s Michigan government update.  The update will continue to be published every Friday.  If you would like to add or remove individuals on this update, please reply to this email.

 

Michigan Legislature

The Michigan Legislature adjourned for spring break on Thursday, March 25.  It will return to session on Tuesday, April 13.

 

In response to an inquiry by Rep. Kevin Hertel (D-St. Clair Shores), the Secretary of State’s Bureau of Elections issued a preliminary response indicating that an elected official can purchase personal protective equipment (PPE), a bulletproof vest, or a home security system using campaign funds.  Rep. Hertel’s inquiry asked whether campaign funds could be used to mitigate the risks associated with coronavirus and increased threats at home and in Lansing.  The response is attached.

 

Michigan Executive and State Departments

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer issued an executive order to establish the Task Force on Forensic Science.  The task force will be an advisory body within Michigan State Police (MSP) and will work to ensure forensic science is applied in a manner that ensures people receive fair trials.  The order is attached.

 

COVID-19

 

Elections

  • The 6th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a ruling by a lower court that Michigan’s signature requirements for independent candidates was unconstitutional.  The ruling also lowered the number of signatures required from 30,000 to 12,000.

 

Other

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March

Below, please find this week’s Michigan government update.  The update will continue to be published every Friday.  If you would like to add or remove individuals on this update, please reply to this email.

 

Michigan Legislature

The House of Representatives unanimously passed legislation aimed at expanding open records laws for the executive office and legislature.  HBs 4383-4392, which passed 109-0, would apply the Freedom of Information Act to the governor and lieutenant governor’s office and create the Legislative Open Records Act for the state legislature.  The Senate is expected to move similar legislation to the floor next week.  Previous efforts on the legislation have typically encountered resistance on the Senate floor.

 

Senate Democratic leadership announced that they would no longer automatically vote to give immediate effect to legislation.  The move means that newly-enacted legislation could see a delayed implementation date unless Democratic support is given.  The tactic comes after continually increased tension between legislative Republicans and Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s administration.

 

The Senate Fiscal Agency released a comprehensive memo detailing the impact on state and local government revenues in Michigan.  The memo is attached.

 

Michigan Executive and State Departments

Following increased scrutiny on her administration’s use of separation agreements, particularly with former Department of Health and Human Services Director Robert Gordon, Gov. Whitmer and Robert Gordon announced they would waive the confidentiality portion of Director Gordon’s separation agreement.  The move comes after the House of Representatives began taking steps to hold hearings, and possibly issue subpoenas, on the matter.

 

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) Executive Committee voted to appoint its chair and vice chair to jointly manage the affairs of the MEDC until the search for a permanent CEO could be completed.  On paper, MEDC Vice Chair Jeff Noel has been designated CEO with signing authority, but Chair Awenate Cobbina will be advising and assisting Noel in that capacity.

 

Federal

The Internal Revenue Service announced this week that the deadline for individuals to file for the 2020 tax year has been extended from April 15, 2021 until May 17, 2021.  The extension is designed to provide relief to taxpayers and help the IRS address the increasing backlogs of unprocessed returns.  The Michigan Department of Treasury has extended their tax deadline to May 17, 2021 as well, matching the federal deadline.

 

COVID-19

 

Elections

 

Other

 

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We hope you will find this new, broader update helpful.  The update will continue to be published every Friday.  If you would like to add or remove individuals on this update, please reply to this email.

 

Michigan Legislature

A fight over supplemental appropriations aimed to help Michigan residents and businesses recover from the impacts of COVID-19 escalated this week.  Following the legislature’s passage of HB 4047 and HB 4048, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer line-item vetoed approximately $650 million from the two bills.  Included in the vetoes was:

 

  • $150 million to the Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund to offset fraud impacts
  • $405 million for business tax and fee relief
  • $86.8 million for non-public schools
  • $10 million for a summer school grant program

 

Following the vetoes, the House of Representatives passed SB 29 and SB 114 on 60-50 and 66-44 votes, respectively.  The bills would restore the funds previously vetoed by the governor.  During a speech in support of the legislation, House Appropriations Chair Thomas Albert (R-Lowell) doubled down on previous remarks regarding his willingness to negotiate with the governor, saying “I wonder if t he governor now knows how the rest of us have felt over the past year.”  Rep. Albert had previously indicated that he would not give the governor input on budget negotiations unless she agreed to give up some of her pandemic emergency powers.

 

The House Fiscal Agency and Senate Fiscal Agency released reports this week indicating revenues for the state were much higher than projected.  Combined General Fund and School Aid Fund revenues were $486.7 million ahead of what was expected based on the January consensus revenue estimate.  Additionally, the Senate Fiscal Agency released its February Monthly Revenue Report and November Michigan Economic Indicators report.  Both reports are attached.

 

Following its introduction last week, the House Health Policy Committee continued its work on a package of bills that seeks to decrease prescription drug prices and increase consumer transparency.  The committee moved two bills, HB 4347 and HB 4353, and heard further testimony on the rest of the package.  Policies in the package include requiring PBMs to be licensed and regulated in Michigan, prohibiting the switching of drug formularies during a plan year, requiring pharmacists to provide information about generic drug alternatives, requiring drug manufacturers to report drug price increases over a certain threshold to DIFS, increasing a consumer’s right to shop, and ensuring all co-pays are counted toward deductibles. It is expected that the committee will vote out the remaining bills next week.

 

The Michigan Senate voted 20-14 Thursday to adopt SR 26.  The resolution grants Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey (R-Clarklake) the authorization to file a lawsuit against Gov. Whitmer if her administration spends any funding that was tied to vetoed provisions in the COVID-19 supplemental.

 

Michigan Executive and State Departments

Following revelations that Gov. Whitmer’s administration had entered into separation agreements with multiple senior administration officials, the governor today issued an executive directive on the subject.  Under the directive, separation agreements may include a monetary payment if the employee agrees not to sue the state and   is “based on a reasonable judgment that securing the release of claims will mitigate financial risk for the state and protect taxpayer money.”  The directive also says that separation agreements can only include a non-disclosure agreement if it memorializes confidentiality requirements otherwise required by law, preserves confidentiality obligations in place during employment, or maintains confidentiality regarding an employment decision or dispute.  The full directive is attached.

 

Federal

President Joe Biden signed the American Rescue Plan on Thursday night, enacting approximately $1.9 trillion of financial aid to federal agencies, individuals, businesses, and state and local governments.  Michigan is expected to receive $10.1 billion from the federal stimulus package, with $5.7 billion going to the state and $4.4 billion going to local governments.  Highlights of the package include:

 

  • Direct payments to residents of up to $1,400
  • Extension of unemployment benefits of $300 per week, through September 6
  • $47.8 billion to HHS for COVID-19 testing, tracing, monitoring, and mitigation
  • $7.5 billion to the CDC implement vaccine distribution and administration nationally
  • $25 billion for bars and restaurants that have lost revenue
  • $15 billion for Economic Injury Disaster Loan Advanced grants
  • $15 billion for the Child Care Development Block Grant program

 

COVID-19

  • The total number of confirmed cases in the state has risen to 603,375, including 15,729 deaths.  So far, 2,753,502 vaccination doses have been administered.
  • Gov. Whitmer announced today that the state is expanding eligibility for the COVID-19 vaccine to Michiganders 16 years of age and older with disabilities or medical conditions that put them at high risk of negative COVID-19 outcomes.  From there, vaccine eligibility will be open to all Michiganders ages 16 years and older beginning April 5.  More information, including the most recent COVID-19 vaccination guidance, is attached.
  • A mass vaccination site with the capacity to administer 6,000 doses each day will open on March 24 at Ford Field in Detroit.  The site will serve residents in the broader southeast Michigan region and will be in place for eight weeks.

 

Elections

The Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission adopted a resolution allowing its general counsel to ask a court to change the deadline for completion of new legislative maps.  The current deadline of November 1 became unworkable after the U.S. Census Bureau announced it would not have redistricting data to states until September 30.

 

Other

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Attached is the updated legislative update and log for your review.  Please let me know if you have any questions.

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February

Please find the current legislative update and log for this week.   Please note the committees that are scheduled for this week.

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We hope you and your families are managing well and doing your best to stay safe and healthy during this uncertain time, and had a safe and relaxing holiday season.  The total number of confirmed cases in the state has risen to 578,091, including 15,273 deaths.  This includes 23,773 cases and 145 deaths within the Michigan Department of Corrections.  A graph of the overall case trends is available here.

 

Michigan Legislature

The Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (MIOSHA) investigation into COVID-19 safety within the Michigan House found that a “correctable deficiency” existed with regards to some legislators not wearing masks.  In response, House Business Office Director Doug Simon asserted that there was no authority to condition the right of lawmakers to vote on bills and participate in the legislative process on the wearing of masks.  Following Simon’s response, MIOSHA responded that they strongly recommend legislators and staff be required to follow CDC guidelines, and that they consider the complaint to be “closed at this time.”

 

Michigan Executive and State Departments

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) was notified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that due to ongoing winter storm conditions in Kentucky and Tennessee, vaccine shipments this week continue to be delayed.  This includes both Pfizer and Moderna vaccines.

 

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced this week that approximately $52.5 million in grant funding was awarded to nearly 6,000 small businesses through the Michigan Small Business Survival Grant Program.  The grants will help businesses retain over 52,500 jobs.  More information is available here.

 

Federal

Our colleagues at Cornerstone Government Affairs in Washington, D.C. have highlighted some updates on the federal level:

 

  • The CDC released highly anticipated guidance for reopening K-12 schools. The indicators and thresholds in the operational strategy replace the core indicators in the previous Indicators for Dynamic School Decision-Making. A comparison of the former and new indicators and thresholds is provided here. The guidance, as anticipated, was met with mixed reviews from stakeholders who do not believe the guidance goes far enough, to critics who feel this is either long overdue or overreaching.  
  • COVID-19 czar Jeff Zients told governors that the weekly vaccine supply going out to states is increasing by more than 20 percent to 13.5 million doses this week. This announcement followed a letter from the National Governors Association sent yesterday, asking President Biden "for enhanced reporting and coordination between federal and state governments on COVID-19 vaccine distribution efforts."
  • The CDC has published new science briefs, including on the transmission of coronavirus in K-12 schools and on options to reduce quarantine, here
  • The CDC is organizing a virtual National Forum on COVID-19 Vaccine Feb. 22- Feb. 24 that will bring together practitioners from national, state, tribal, local, and territorial levels who are engaged in vaccinating communities across the nation. 
  • The FDA posted the webpage, COVID-19 Vaccine Safety Surveillance, which provides an overview of the Agency's active and passive systems used to monitor the safety of authorized COVID-19 vaccines. The FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research is conducting these surveillance efforts in collaboration with the CDC, CMS, the VA, and other academic and large non-government healthcare data systems.
  • Last week, the FDA issued an EUA for a monoclonal antibody combination for the treatment of mild to moderate COVID-19 in adults and pediatric patients (12 years of age or older weighing at least 40 kilograms) who test positive for coronavirus and who are at high risk for progressing to severe COVID-19.
  • The FDA informed the drugmaker Moderna that it can put up to 40 percent more coronavirus vaccine into each of its vials. A 14-dose vial load could increase the nation’s vaccine supply by as much as 20 percent.
  • The most recent COVID-19 Science Update from the CDC is here
  • The DoD has put about 3,600 service members on orders to be ready to deploy around the country to help with mass vaccination efforts.
  • U.S. Navy officials announced that three sailors aboard the U.S.S. Theodore Roosevelt have tested positive for COVID-19.
  • FEMA launched its first mass COVID-19 vaccination sites in Los Angeles and Oakland today. Inclement weather delayed the opening of similar sites in Texas. 
  • As part of his National Strategy for the COVID-19 Response and Pandemic Preparedness, President Biden announced a series of new actions to expand COVID-19 testing. These actions include: Expanding COVID-19 testing for schools and underserved populations; Increasing domestic manufacturing of testing supplies; and Rapidly increasing virus genome sequencing.
  • President Biden is set to announce that the U.S. will provide $4 billion between 2021 and 2022 to Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance for the COVAX Advance Market Commitment, the innovative financing instrument of the COVAX Facility, which supports access to safe and effective vaccines for 92 low- and middle-income economies. 
  • A transcript from the most recent White House COVID-19 Response Team briefing is here
  • The USDA, the FDA, and the CDC published a statement underscoring that there is no credible evidence of food or food packaging associated with or as a likely source of viral transmission of COVID-19.
  • The CDC has published and updated a number of COVID-19 and vaccine materials and resources on its dashboard, and you can keep track of vaccinations here. Please continue to check these for information on things like recommended quarantine periods and return-to-work guidance. To highlight a few of the recent updates:
  • CDC's weekly COVIDView report has been replaced with the COVID Data Tracker Weekly Review. This new webpage and newsletter will highlight key data from CDC’s COVID Data Tracker, narrative interpretations of the data, and visualizations from the week. The new Weekly Review will also summarize important trends in the pandemic and bring together CDC data and reporting in a centralized location. 
  • There are multiple relevant hearings coming up in Congress:
  • The NIH announced it is funding a new study that will evaluate the effects of remdesivir in pregnant women who have been prescribed the drug to treat COVID-19. The study, which will be conducted at 17 sites in the continental U.S. and Puerto Rico, aims to determine how pregnant women metabolize the drug and whether there are any potential side effects.
  • 331 tests and sample collection devices are authorized by the FDA under EUA. These include 247 molecular tests and sample collection devices, 70 antibody tests and 14 antigen tests. There are 37 molecular authorizations that can be used with home-collected samples. There is one molecular prescription at-home test, one antigen prescription at-home test and one over-the-counter (OTC) at-home antigen test.
  • Top Republicans on the House Energy and Commerce Committee wrote a letter to CDC Director Rochelle Walensky pressing for more information on the agency’s guidance for reopening schools. Committee Ranking Member Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), and Reps. Brett Guthrie (R-KY) and Morgan Griffith (R-VA), wrote that 89 percent of the nation’s school children, or over 65.3 million students, currently live in areas that would be considered high transmission areas based on the new guidance.
  • HHS and the White House COVID-19 response team have released the weekly state profile snapshot. The purpose of this report is to develop a shared understanding of the current status of the pandemic at the national, regional, state, and local levels.
  • The DoD published its most recent COVID-19 Travel Restrictions Installation Status Update.
  • DHS announced it has seized more than 11 million counterfeit N95 masks meant for frontline workers in recent weeks, including more than 1 million on Wednesday.
  • The CDC is organizing a virtual National Forum on COVID-19 Vaccine Feb. 22- Feb. 24 that will bring together practitioners from national, state, tribal, local, and territorial levels who are engaged in vaccinating communities across the nation. 

 

Other

 

As things develop involving the COVID-19 outbreak in Michigan, please continue to share with us your organization’s developments.  Let us know how we can assist with distributing both good news and important information to government stakeholders.

 

Michigan’s COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard is available here.  A vaccine locator can be found here.  For more information on the vaccine, visit Michigan’s vaccine home page here.

 

The state’s MI Safe Start Map dashboard is available here.  Subscribe to the State of Michigan’s COVID-19 website here.  The state is also operating a coronavirus hotline at (888) 535-6136.  The U.S. Centers for Disease Control updates information and resources here.

 

Please reach out if you have any questions and we will continue to keep you apprised of further updates. 

Attached is the current legislative update and new legislative log for this session.  Please pay close attention to the committee portion.  There are a number of relevant committees this week that are important to the fire services.

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January

We hope you and your families are managing well and doing your best to stay safe and healthy during this uncertain time, and had a safe and relaxing holiday season.  The total number of confirmed cases in the state has risen to 544,311, including 14,053 deaths.  This includes 22,567 cases and 134 deaths within the Michigan Department of Corrections.  A graph of the overall case trends is available here.

 

Kelley Cawthorne announced the addition of former State Representative Jason Sheppard to its advocacy team.  Sheppard, of Temperance, was elected to the House of Representatives three times by Monroe County voters, holding office from 2015–2021. He held several leadership positions during that time, including serving as House Majority Whip and chair of the House Government Operations Committee.

 

Michigan Legislature

The House Democratic Caucus announced that Rep. Sarah Anthony (D-Lansing) will return to her role as caucus chair.  Additionally, the caucus announced that Rep. Matt Koleszar (D-Plymouth) would become the minority whip.

 

Michigan Executive and State Departments

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced details for her Michigan COVID Recovery Plan.  The proposal would direct $2 billion to schools and $225 million for business support programs.  Details include:

 

  • $90 million increase for vaccine distribution
  • $575 million for increased testing and tracing
  • $1.7 billion federal and $300 million in state funds to help schools provide an in-person learning option by March 1, as well as address learning loss caused by the pandemic
  • $225 million in funds for Michigan Economic Development Corporation programs:
    • Michigan Mainstreet Initiative
    • Michigan Microenterprise Support Initiative
    • Business Accelerator and Resiliency Initiative
  • Extension of unemployment benefits from 20 weeks to 26 weeks
  • Food assistance
  • Rental assistance
  • Creation of an Office of Rural Development
  • Property tax assistance

 

More details on the plan are attached.

 

The governor also announced a new epidemic order, effective February 1.  The order, which is attached, allows indoor service at bars and restaurants to resume.  Details include:

 

  • Bars and restaurants will be allowed to reopen at 25% capacity with up to 100 people.
  • Tables must be six feet apart with no more than six people per table.
    • Outdoor tents with four sides are permitted under this rule.
  • Bars and restaurants must close by 10:00 p.m.
  • Contact information must be collected from customers for contact tracing purposes.

 

The state is also implementing a “MI COVID-19 Safer Dining” program.  The program allows food service establishments to become certified by having their ventilation system inspected and submitting the inspection report to the state indicating they are optimizing airflow.  Once certified, businesses will be featured on the Michigan.gov/covidsaferdining website and receive a copy of their certification to post at their establishment to alert diners of their participation.

 

The Whitmer administration announced the creation of several COVID-19 vaccine resources.  Michigan’s COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard is available here.  A vaccine locator can be found here.  For more information on the vaccine, visit Michigan’s vaccine home page here.

 

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) announced it had identified the first case of a new COVID-19 variant in the state.  The variant, which is believed to be more contagious, was found in a Washtenaw County woman who had recently traveled to the United Kingdom, where the variant originated.

 

MDHHS also issued guidance encouraging colleges and universities to require COVID-19 testing for on- and off-campus students.  The guidance is attached.

 

The Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) cited 10 more businesses for COVID-19 violations.  Penalties associated with this round of violations will total more than $24,000.

 

The Michigan Liquor Control Commission suspended the licenses of two more businesses, bringing the total number of suspended liquor licenses to 37.

 

Federal

Our colleagues at Cornerstone Government Affairs in Washington, D.C. have highlighted some updates on the federal level:

 

 

Other

  • The U.S. is currently averaging more than 3,300 new COVID-19 deaths per day. The country has recorded more than 61,000 deaths from the disease just since the start of the month, which is approximately one American death from COVID-19 every 30 seconds.  New daily deaths have risen more than 30 percent in the last two weeks.

 

As things develop involving the COVID-19 outbreak in Michigan, please continue to share with us your organization’s developments.  Let us know how we can assist with distributing both good news and important information to government stakeholders.

 

Michigan’s COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard is available here.  A vaccine locator can be found here.  For more information on the vaccine, visit Michigan’s vaccine home page here.

 

The state’s MI Safe Start Map dashboard is available here.  Subscribe to the State of Michigan’s COVID-19 website here.  The state is also operating a coronavirus hotline at (888) 535-6136.  The U.S. Centers for Disease Control updates information and resources here.

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2021.01.22_Masks_and_Gatherings_order_71[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [307.7 KB]

please find the House standing policy and appropriations subcommittee assignments for the 2021-22 session.  Also attached is the most up-to-date House Republican Policy Office directory.

101st Legislature Appropriations Subcomm[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [417.0 KB]
fireworks bill 2.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [425.1 KB]
HRPO Committee and Contact Information.p[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [134.0 KB]

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