Upper Peninsula and Traverse City Area Start to Reopen

Governor Whitmer Reopens Retail, Restaurants, and Offices in Upper Peninsula and Traverse City Regions. Businesses that Reopen Must Adopt Workplace Safety Measures to Protect Employees and Customers. 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 … [Read more...]

Honoring Memorial Day in 2020

With much of the nation shutdown due to COVID-19, one might not even remember that May 25, 2020 is a Monday - or, more importantly, Memorial Day. The customary Memorial Day festivities of barbecues, beer, wearing white, traveling, and shopping will be truncated, if not arrested. However, perhaps this is a sublime unintended consequence of social distancing and sheltering at home orders. If it settles our minds and let us focus on first things first - actually giving Memorial Day its … [Read more...]

Executive Order to Create a Return to Learn Advisory Council

Governor Whitmer Announces Process to Chart Path for the Safe and Equitable Reopening of Schools Governor Gretchen Whitmer 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 … [Read more...]

Six Phases of Safe Start Plan and Manufacturing Resumes May 11

Governor Announces Michigan is in Phase Three 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: UNCONTROLLED GROWTH: The increasing number of new cases every day, overwhelming our health systems. PERSISTENT SPREAD: We … [Read more...]

Rochester Funeral Homes Cope With the Cruelty of COVID-19

They’re not often mentioned with the other front-line workers fighting the COVID-19 crisis, but they are there nonetheless—quietly risking their health to ease the pain of others. For the men and women of Rochester’s funeral homes who consider it a sacred trust to care for the dead and provide compassionate service to their families, the barriers imposed by COVID-19 are heartbreaking. The virus is cruel—not only to the victims whose lives it takes but also to the surviving families who face … [Read more...]

Governor Whitmer Extends Executive Order Limiting Places of Public Accommodation

More Extensions from the Governor, Effective through May 28 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. “Although we are beginning to see the curve flatten, we are not out of the woods yet. We must all continue to be … [Read more...]

A Portrait of Our Pandemic

A photographic Tour of Rochester during the Midst of Our Pandemic Photo captions by Deborah J. Larsen / Photos by Gerald Larsen   … [Read more...]

New Order Lifts Some Restrictions, Extends Others, and Adds Homemade Mask Rule

Governor Whitmer Extends Stay Home, Stay Safe Order, Directs Michiganders to Wear Homemade Masks in Enclosed Public Spaces, but also Lifts Restrictions on Activities like Lawn Care, Golfing, Boating Today, 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 … [Read more...]

Midwest Governors Announce Partnership to Reopen Regional Economy

Today, 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, … [Read more...]

Enhancing Hospital Capacity and Allowing Public Meetings to be Held Electronically

Governor Whitmer Extends Executive Orders Enhancing Hospital Capacity, Allowing Public Meetings to be Held Electronically 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 Relax regulatory requirements on hospitals and care facilities in order … [Read more...]