Dear Neighbor,

Here is some information that I hope you will find helpful, including some updates on the state’s efforts to address COVID-19 as well as other news from your state government.

MDHHS Announces Vaccine Priority Groups

On the heels of exciting news about approval of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services announced priority for vaccine administration. The vaccine will be rolled out in four phases:

  • Phase 1A: Healthcare workers who have direct or indirect exposure to patients and residents of long-term care facilities;
  • Phase 1B: Workers in “essential and critical industries” like those working in corrections facilities, critical infrastructure, schools, and child cares;
  • Phase 1C: Individuals who are considered high risk for getting severely sick from COVID-19, including those with underlying medical conditionals and those 65 and up; and
  • Phase 2: Mass vaccination for all adults.

The State of Michigan is aiming to vaccinate 70% of Michigan residents age 16 and older by the end of 2021. More information on the COVID-19 vaccine in Michigan can be found at

Tax Assistance for Businesses Affected by Epidemic Order

Businesses that have been negatively affected by MDHHS’s epidemic order now have an additional month to make their December sales, use and withholding tax monthly payment. The majority of entertainment and recreation venues; restaurants that depend on indoor dining; and any other businesses that have been affected by these MDHHS orders who were scheduled their make their monthly sales, use, and withholding tax payments on Dec. 20, 2020, can now postpone filing and payment requirements until Jan. 20, 2021 with no penalties or interest.

$10 Million of Grant Funding Approved for MI Small Businesses

The Michigan Strategic Fund has approved an additional $10 million in grant funding for small businesses that have been hurt by COVID-19. Under this program, 650 small businesses will be awarded grants for up to $15,000. Small businesses can submit applications beginning Dec. 15 at To qualify, businesses must be in a targeted industry; have between 2 and 49 employees; and need help with payroll, rent, mortgage, or other necessary expenses to continue or restart business operation. More information about the Pure Michigan Small Business Relief Initiative can be found here.

Health Insurance Open Enrollment Ends Today

Today, December 15, is the last day to enroll in 2021 health insurance coverage. Anyone who wants to enroll, renew, change, or update their health plan for next year should do so before this deadline. To find out more information, visit

Swearing in for 101st Legislation Session

I am humbled and grateful for the opportunity to return to the Capitol for the 101st Legislative Session. I look forward to continuing my work on quality, affordable health care; access to clean drinking water for everyone; and more stability and support for working families. There is no doubt that we have many challenges ahead, but I am determined to work through them and make things better for everyone in the process.



While legislative offices remain closed to the public, my team and I are still providing responsive service as we work from home. Please don’t hesitate to contact us at (517) 373-0587 or by email at if we can help.


Kara Hope
State Representative