Here is some information that I hope you will find helpful, including some updates on the state’s efforts to address COVID-19 and its effects on housing, employment, and more.
Bi-partisan Budget Agreement Announced
On Monday, Gov. Whitmer and legislative leaders reached an agreement for budget adjustments for the remainder of the current fiscal year, which ends September 30, 2020. The agreement adjusts the existing budget and distributes federal CARES Act funding to local governments, schools, colleges, and universities to cover costs associated with COVID-19. This includes reimbursement for COVID-19 related expenses and funds needed to prepare for the upcoming school year. Some details still need to be worked out, but this initial agreement is encouraging.
Gov. Whitmer Releases ‘Return to School Roadmap’
On Tuesday, Gov. Whitmer announced the “MI Safe Schools: Return to School Road Map”. This roadmap will help local school districts create plans for in-person learning in the fall while following safety protocols. The safety protocols correspond to the six phases of the MI Safe Start Plan. The roadmap includes guidance on personal protective equipment, disinfecting schools, social distancing in classrooms, athletics, and screening for the virus.
School districts must create a COVID-19 Preparedness and Response Plan. This plan must address how the school will protect students and employees in each phase of the MI Safe Start Plan. The recent budget agreement for the current fiscal year provides $256 million to implement the Preparedness and Response Plans.
Auto Insurance Changes Went Into Effect on July 1
The changes to Michigan’s no-fault auto insurance started to take effect on July 1. These changes include improved consumer protections, more coverage options, and an end to discriminatory pricing. For more information on coverage changes visit michigan.gov/autoinsurance.
Eviction Diversion Program Created, Evictions Suspended through July 15
Last week, Gov. Whitmer signed an executive order creating the Eviction Diversion Program. Beginning on July 16, $50 million in rental assistance will be available to landlords who allow tenants to remain in their homes. Qualifying landlords are required to forgive late fees and up to 10% of the overdue rent. Tenants and mobile home owners can remain in their homes through July 15 even if they are unable to pay their rent.
Youth Work Permit Application Requirements Suspended Through July 31
Some requirements for minors to obtain work permits continue to be temporarily lifted. This change was made because school closures have made it more difficult for young workers to obtain necessary records from their schools. Under this executive order, these permits can be mailed, emailed, faxed, or sent online through July 31.
Have a Safe, Happy Fourth of July!
Keep social distancing and other health recommendations in mind as you celebrate Independence Day this weekend. Despite recent setbacks, Michigan continues to do fairly well in containing COVID-19. If you choose to socialize this weekend, keep your gathering small. And make sure to wear a mask, socially distance, and wash your hands. For additional health information, visit the state’s coronavirus website.
While legislative offices remain closed to the public, my team is still providing responsive service as they work from home. Please don’t hesitate to contact us at (517) 373-0587 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org if we can help.