In collaboration with the Western U.P. Health Department and Emergency Operation Centers in Baraga County, Gogebic County, Houghton County, Keweenaw County and Ontonagon County, Copper Country Strong Daily Briefs will be shared each weekday through the duration of the COVID-19 Pandemic.
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State of Michigan Updates
- Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-160 and Executive Order 2020-161, amending Michigan’s Safe Start Order and issuing revised workplace safeguards. Under the Safe Start Order, starting July 31, 2020, statewide indoor gatherings will be limited to 10 people and bars will be closed for indoor service across the state, including in Regions 6 and 8.
“As we see COVID-19 cases continue to rise, Michiganders cannot afford to drop our guard. We must take every step possible to save lives, protect the brave men and women on the front lines, and avoid overwhelming our healthcare system while we continue to combat COVID-19,” said Governor Whitmer. “After seeing a resurgence in cases connected to social gatherings across the state, we must further limit gatherings for the health of our community and economy. By taking these strong actions, we will be better positioned to get our children back into classrooms and avoid a potentially devastating second wave.”
COVID-19’s resurgence is closely associated with super-spreading events at large social gatherings, often attended by young people. An outbreak at a Lansing bar has resulted in 187 infections; more than 50 cases have been linked to a single house party in Saline; and a sandbar party at Torch Lake over the July 4 weekend led to at least 43 confirmed cases. Therefore, Executive Order 2020-160 limits statewide indoor gatherings to 10 people or less and, across most of the state, limits outdoor gatherings to 100. (The outdoor gathering limits will remain at 250 in Regions 6 and 8.)
Executive Order 2020-160 also orders that bars in every region, including those in regions 6 and 8, must close for indoor service if they earn more than 70% of their gross receipts from sales of alcoholic beverages.
Under the governor’s orders, Detroit casinos will also be allowed to open on August 5, but their occupancy will be limited to 15% capacity. Casinos must also, among other things, conduct a daily entry screening protocol for customers and employees, temperature screening. Casinos must require patrons to wear a face covering, except while eating or drinking or for identification purposes.
Executive Order 2020-160 will rescind Executive Orders 2020-110, 2020-115, 2020-120, 2020-133, and 2020-143. Read Executive Order 2020-160 (PDF). Read Executive Order 2020-161 (PDF).
Updates from Western U.P. Health Department
Below are number updates since the last reported numbers on Monday, July 27.
- TOTAL: 16 more cases, two more probable, seven more recoveries
- GOGEBIC COUNTY: 14 more cases, one more probable, three more recoveries
- HOUGHTON COUNTY: One more case, three more recoveries
- KEWEENAW COUNTY: One more probable
- ONTONAGON COUNTY: One more case, one more recovery
Updates from Michigan Department of Health and Human Services
- Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Director Robert Gordon issued an Emergency Order July 29 reinforcing Executive Orders 2020-160 and 2020-161 and allowing for civil fines of up to $1,000 and referral to licensing agencies for violations. This new order rescinds a June 5 order referencing earlier versions of the governor’s orders.
“Michigan’s efforts to suppress the virus have reduced Michigan’s infection rate from among the highest in the country to a rate similar to the national average, Gordon said. “However, case counts have recently trended upward, from fewer than 100 cases per day in mid-June, to between 500 and 1,000 per day in recent days. We must remain vigilant in our response to this ongoing threat and take all appropriate measures to reduce its impact.”
The Emergency Order requires that everyone must comply with the procedures and restrictions outlined in the following Executive Orders:
Executive Order 2020-160, which limits statewide indoor gatherings to 10 people or less and, across most of the state, limits outdoor gatherings to 100. (The outdoor gathering limits will remain at 250 in Regions 6 and 8.) It also orders that bars in every region, including those in Regions 6 and 8, must close for indoor service if they earn more than 70 percent of their gross receipts from sales of alcoholic beverages
Executive Order 2020-161, which orders businesses to develop COVID-19 preparedness and response plans, designate supervisors to implement and monitor those plans, and train employees on workplace infection control and use of personal protective equipment.
Under the governor’s orders, Detroit casinos will also be allowed to open on Aug. 5, but their occupancy will be limited to 15 percent capacity. Casinos must also conduct a daily entry screening protocol for customers and employees and temperature screenings. Casinos must require patrons to wear a face covering, except while eating or drinking or for identification purposes.
Any violations of this Emergency Order by a person regulated by a licensing agency must be referred to the relevant licensing agency for a determination on whether to pursue additional enforcement action on a case-by-case basis.
Pursuant to MCL 333.2235(1), local health departments are authorized to carry out and enforce the terms of this order. Law enforcement officers may enforce this order and are authorized to investigate potential violations. They may coordinate as necessary with the local health department and enforce this order within their jurisdiction.
Law enforcement officers, as defined in the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards Act, 1965 Public Act 203, MCL 28.602(f), are deemed to be “department representatives” for purposes of enforcing this order and are specifically authorized to investigate potential violations of this order. They may coordinate as necessary with the appropriate regulatory entity and enforce this order within their jurisdiction.
Criminal penalties for violation of the Governor’s Executive Orders will remain an option for prosecutors. The Emergency Order is issued under MCL 333.2253(1). Information around this outbreak is changing rapidly. The latest information is available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus.
- Statement from WUPHD on increase of COVID-19 cases in Copper Country, via Daily Mining Gazette
- Western U.P. COVID-19 Numbers Jump, via Keweenaw Report
- GCC masks up for fall in-person class, via Daily Globe
- Wisconsin governor enacts statewide mask mandate, via CBS 3
- Restart grants available to UP small businesses through August 5, via ABC 10
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