Gov gives OK for May 7th return
LANSING, Mich. -- Today, at a press conference with leaders in health care, business, and labor, 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.
“The vast majority of Michiganders are still doing their part to protect themselves and their families from COVID-19. That’s good, but we must keep it up,” said the Governor . “As part of our MI Safe Start Plan, we are bringing business and labor leaders together to ensure that while we lift some restrictions on the previous Stay Home, Stay Safe order, we are also protecting workers and their families from the spread of this virus. I want to be clear: we must all continue to stay home and stay safe as much as possible. If we all keep doing our part, we can reduce the risk of a second wave and re-engage our economy safely and responsibly.”
The governor’s Stay Home, Stay Safe order remains in effect until May 15, 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. Executive Order 2020-70 also requires businesses to adopt measures to protect their workers against the spread of COVID-19.
“The data shows that we’re ready to lift some of these restrictions while also encouraging Michiganders to continue doing their part under the governor’s Stay Home, Stay Safe order,” said MDHHS Chief Deputy for Health and Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun.“The steps the governor is taking today will help ensure protections for workers and their families from COVID-19 while allowing for work in lower-risk fields to resume. We will keep monitoring the data closely and work with our partners across state government to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.”
“We are grateful for the governor’s commitment to protecting working people and their families from the spread of COVID-19,” said Pat Devlin , Secretary Treasurer of the Michigan Building and Construction Trades Council. “Our dedicated building tradesmen and women are ready to get back to work, and we’re glad the governor has taken steps today to help ensure their safety. We are excited to continue working with Governor Whitmer as she continues to take action on behalf of working families.”
Under the order, construction sites must adopt a set of best practices to protect their workers from infection. Those practices include:
“With an eye towards Michigan’s economic recovery, leadership representing the full spectrum of the construction industry have been working diligently and cooperatively to outline processes and practices that will allow us to safely get back to work,” said Ryan Maibach, President & CEO of Barton Malow and member of the Michigan Economic Recovery Council. “The construction industry is entrenched in a culture of safety, and as we return to work, we are developing and implementing new best practices that further emphasize the well-being of our workers and Michigan’s citizens.”
Last week, the governor signed Executive Order 2020-59 to require people to wear homemade face coverings when they enter enclosed public spaces. This requirement is still in effect under Executive Order 2020-70.
For years the Board of Public Works has held their Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day in the late spring. The annual event provides an opportunity to get rid of some of those unwanted items long stored in a corner of the garage and basement shelf or dispose of no longer needed paints, solvents, old gas containers, out of date propane tanks and other undesirables that have taken up residence.
This year the event was scheduled for May 30th but due to the COVID-19 situation the BPW made the decision to postpone the event and scheduling issues may lead to its cancellation for this year.
House, Senate move to take the matter to court
By N3 News
It seems the lines have been drawn in the latest factional fracas fomenting in our capital city.
Last night (Thursday) with a midnight deadline looming and the refusal of the Legislature to extend the emergency and disaster declaration Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed three executive orders to go forward with the extension until May 28th. Each was signed at 11:59pm.
The 'Stay Home, Stay Safe' order has not changed at this time and is set to expire on May 15.
“Unfortunately, COVID-19 will be with us for some time. But Michiganders cannot live under a state of emergency forever,” said Sen. Jon Bumstead, R-Newaygo in a press release. “Families and essential businesses are following CDC guidelines and recommendations. We have seen that we can modify our daily lives to protect ourselves and our neighbors while going about many everyday activities, but the governor refuses to give residents any indication of when or how Michigan will emerge from this state of emergency.”
“While some members of the legislature might believe this crisis is over, common sense and all of the scientific data tells us we’re not out of the woods yet.” said Whitmer. “By refusing to extend the emergency and disaster declaration, Republican lawmakers are putting their heads in the sand and putting more lives and livelihoods at risk. I’m not going to let that happen.
“We’re all in this together. Defeating COVID-19 is an all hands on deck moment for our state, and I remain hopeful that Republicans in the legislature will stop the partisan games and start working with me to re-engage our economy safely and responsibly.”
“"I believe in science and the need to protect public health, however, I firmly believe that the preventative measures taken to slow the spread of this illness have gone too far and gone on for too long,” said 100th District State Representative Scott VanSingel in an N3 article posted Wednesday. “This is not a partisan position or belief, rather, I have seen the economic devastation this shutdown has caused and believe that we need to reopen our economy as soon as possible while being conscious of best practices in regards to sanitation health.”
While SB 858 calls for more constraints on her capacity to act, the Governor has made it clear she would not sign any bill restricting her ability to respond during emergencies and disasters.
Meanwhile the Senate and House approved resolutions aimed at mounting a legal battle challenging her authority and actions during the current crisis.
“Looking forward, I would prefer to see collective discussions on decisions that drastically impact the health and welfare of every single Michigan resident,” Bumstead said. “I hope the governor reverses course and reconsiders her refusal to work with or include the Legislature in these difficult decisions.”
The Governor will be delivering an update on the state’s response to COVID-19 at 3pm today (Friday),