These past two months have not been easy, and I want to thank you for staying home and staying safe.
Because all of us are doing our part, we are continuing to see our daily positive COVID-19 cases and deaths trending on a decline. This puts us on track to safely reengage our economy and return to work. We have seen many restrictions lifted this past week, and can look forward to more as the illness rates decline.
While this is great news, we must not forget that COVID-19 is still present and if we can, we should be considerate by wearing masks in public, reducing our public activities and socially distancing.
During the “Stay Home Stay Safe” order, my staff and I will not be in our Lansing office regularly. We will be in the 52nd District working to assist you and to advocate for our community’s needs. To reach out, please email me at DonnaLasinski@house.mi.gov.
Please remember to wash your hands regularly, avoid direct contact with others and if you feel ill, please contact your healthcare provider immediately.
COVID-19 Michigan Statistics
At this time, Michigan ranks 8th total COVID-19 tests, 7th in the nation for the number of COVID-19 cases, but ranks 4th in COVID-19 deaths. You can see our state’s COVID-19 statistics and data here.
State Total Confirmed Cases: 53,510
State Total Deaths: 5,129
State Total Tests: 471,625
As of 5/19/20 – State Daily COVID-19 Tests: 18,359
Washtenaw County Total Confirmed Cases: 1,265
Washtenaw County Total Deaths: 95
Information is changing rapidly. We are working hard to share updates and information as quickly as possible on social media. Please take a moment to like and follow me on Facebook, as this is where information will first be shared.
On Thursday, May 21st, Governor Whitmer lifted some Stay Home order restrictions.
- Permitting social gatherings of 10 people or less, so long as the group adheres to social distancing. This starts effective immediately.
- Reopening of statewide retail stores and auto showroom sales by appointment only. This starts on May 26th.
- Lifting the requirement that healthcare providers delay some nonessential medical, dental & veterinary procedures. This starts on May 29th
On Tuesday, May 19th, I was proud to introduce House Resolution 264. This resolution calls on the federal government to reconsider and approve a federal waiver to exclude Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation [commonly referred to as the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA)] from counting as income under the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. While our neighbors are receiving their unemployment benefits, they are losing their SNAP eligibility. At a time when our community is struggling, we must ensure that families can afford to put food on their table.
On Friday, May 15th, our non-partisan, state House and Senate Fiscal Agencies came together to report on the fiscal outlook of our state and the effects the COVID-19 pandemic will have on our state budget. This annual report is called the Consensus Revenue Estimating Conference (CREC).
During the CREC, it was estimated that Michigan will lose $1.9 billion in expected revenue from our General Fund and $1.2 billion from our School Aid Fund.
On Friday, May 15th, Governor Whitmer announced the Return to Learn Advisory Council. This council will work to provide recommendations to the state on how schools might safely reopen this fall. it 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 within the State Emergency Operations Center with recommendations on how to safely, equitably, and efficiently return to school in the Fall.
I Want to Hear from You
During this challenging time, I want to hear from you. What do you need? How can we help you? Please, reach out to me at DonnLasinski@house.mi.gov.
Tuesday Town Halls
Out of an abundance of caution, all previously scheduled coffee hours and in-district meetings are cancelled. Our next Facebook Live Townhall will be June 2 at 7pm.
Small Business Assistance
The Small Business Association of Michigan (SBAM) has released a comprehensive set of resources, guides and tips for small businesses preparing to reopen and operate safely as we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic.
SBAM has include numerous ideas for small businesses to consider when enacting safe workplace procedures, revising employee manuals, policies and handbooks, and information for employers to discuss with staff.
This site also has a comprehensive list of sources for small businesses to obtain safety equipment and personal protection equipment. Visit the site here.
This is an extremely difficult time for those with mental health issues. They may not able to see their doctors face-to-face, feelings of isolation and loneliness, or not being able to see loved may exacerbate conditions.
If you need someone to talk to, the state has launched a statewide, peer-run warmline for Michiganders living with persistent mental health conditions during this pandemic.
The warmline will operate seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. at 888-PEER-753 (888-733-7753).
It is intended to serve individuals living with persistent mental health challenges including anxiety, depression and trauma.
Individuals in crisis, including those considering suicide, are urged to contact the Disaster Distress Helpline 24/7 at 800-985-5990 or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 24/7 at 800-273-8255.
If you have yet to apply, please visit here to watch informational videos on how to apply or access your federal benefits application.
Visit here for the MiWAM toolkit to help you navigate the MiWAM website and properly set up your account.
If you have questions as you apply, or are unsure of what you will need to apply visit here for the UIA’s Unemployment Benefits FAQ.
For more information or to apply for unemployment benefits, visit Michigan.gov/UIA or call (866) 500-0017.
Faith in Action is still proudly serving the families of Western Washtenaw County. If you need food assistance, or you know someone who might need help, Faith in Action is still operating and delivering food.
They can be contacted by calling (734) 475-3305.
Their hours of operation are:
M/W: 11am-7pm Tu/Th: 9am-4pm Friday: closed
Meals for School Age Students
Ann Arbor Public Schools
Breakfast and lunch packages are available for pickup from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Fridays. If you can’t make the pick-ups or have food allergy concerns, call the AAPS Food Service Hotline at 734-994-2265. For more information, including pickup locations, visit here.
Chelsea School District
Food Service is providing sack breakfast and lunch meals for students from 10 a.m. to noon at the Chelsea High School commons entrance. If you do not have transportation, contact the district at 734-433-2208 ext. 6082 to discuss alternative plans.
Dexter Community Schools
Drive-up pickup will be in the Mill Creek Parking Lot from 8:00-9:30 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. on Tuesdays and Fridays. Families can pick up on both Tuesdays and Fridays each week. Each pickup will include breakfast and lunch for 7 days worth per child. For families who cannot come in to pick up food or have special dietary needs, we have established a hotline number to call 734-424-4186.
Manchester Community Schools
For Manchester Schools food distribution services, please visit their website and fill out the school closure meals form.
Visit michigan.gov.meetupeatup for all of the school locations providing meals. These meals are available to all children ages 0-18 at no cost.
Governor Whitmer acted to protect workers from retaliation by their employers, if they stay home because one of their close contacts has tested positive for COVID-19: Click here for post and further information.
The Attorney General’s office has created a website to help you “know your rights” as an employee if you are still required to work during this time. Click here
52nd District Resources
My office and I have created a Google Drive of resources and information regarding COVID-19 for individuals, employers and employees. Click here to access the entire drive.
You can receive continual updates from the MI Dept. of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) by clicking here.
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United Way of Washtenaw County Free Tax Preparation Help
As the new year begins, we also need to start preparing to file our 2019 taxes. The United Way of Washtenaw County offers free tax preparation help to those who are eligible. To see if you are eligible for their tax preparation help, please visit the website below. If you are eligible, you can schedule your appointment online or call the phone number below.
Please note that they will only be able to help with the 2019 tax filing year. Prior years will be on hold until spring 2020 (after this tax season).
Phone: (734) 677-7235
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State Representative Donna Lasinski