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steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Michigan movie theaters and other indoor entertainment venues will soon be allowed to re-open. 

Doors closed at cinemas and similar businesses in March during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic in Michigan.

But while other businesses have slowly reopened in recent months, indoor movie screens have remained dark.  

absentee ballot
Jodi Westrick / Michigan Radio

Absentee voting began Thursday in Michigan.

Absentee ballots were put in the mail to people who requested them. Registered voters can also stop by clerks’ offices to fill out their ballots.

In a web conference with progressive activists, Governor Gretchen Whitmer noted the election in Michigan was very close in 2016.

Gretchen Whitmer
Michigan.gov

Michigan is on the road to carbon neutrality by 2050, per an executive order Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed on Wednesday.

Whitmer made the announcement at a U.S. Climate Alliance virtual meeting. That’s a group of states led by governors who have committed to addressing climate change according to the framework laid out by the Paris Agreement, which President Donald Trump announced the withdrawal of the U.S. from in 2017.

State renames building for two Michigan civil rights pioneers

Sep 21, 2020
daisy elliott holds papers posing in front of the Michigan Capitol
Courtesy of the Michigan History Center

Governor Gretchen Whitmer has formally dedicated a state office building with a new name that honors two civil rights pioneers.

The former Lewis Cass building in downtown Lansing is now the Elliott-Larsen Building.

MICHIGAN.GOV

Governor Gretchen Whitmer asked business owners Thursday to be patient with executive orders and other actions taken to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Whitmer engaged in an online session with the Small Business Association of Michigan.

She said it’s important that businesses be held to the existing standard of taking “reasonable” efforts to provide a safe environment.

Gretchen Whitmer at a podium
michigan.gov

Governor Gretchen Whitmer says she supports the Big 10’s decision to allow an abbreviated football season.

That’s after the conference reversed its earlier decision and agreed to protocols to allow football games.
Whitmer said it’s not her decision, but she’ll keep a close eye on how things play out at Michigan State University and the University of Michigan.

Mark Brush / Michigan Radio

Michigan has closed on a sale of $800 million in bonds to rebuild some of the most traveled highways in the state.

Gretchen Whitmer at a podium
michigan.gov

Governor Gretchen Whitmer leveled harsh words Thursday against President Donald Trump over his handling of the COVID-19 crisis.

She called Trump “the biggest enemy of the state” over an interview taped by journalist Bob Woodward.

In it, Trump said he downplayed the danger of COVID-19. The governor said, if that is true, the President prolonged the crisis.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

This week, the Michigan Supreme Court is scheduled to hear arguments in a legal challenge to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s use of emergency powers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Whitmer has faced numerous legal challenges to their use of emergency powers during the coronavirus outbreak. Just last month, the Michigan Court of Appeals sided with the governor in a lawsuit filed by Republican lawmakers.  

MICHIGAN.GOV

Governor Gretchen Whitmer said Friday that she’s concerned gatherings over the three-day Labor Day holiday weekend could lead to a spike in COVID-19 cases in the state.

The governor has relaxed some restrictions to allow more school sports and the re-opening of gyms and pools. At the same time, she extended the state of emergency in Michigan to October 1st.

Rodrigo Sarsfield / Unsplash

Gyms and pools in Michigan can re-open next week, but with new rules to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. That’s under two executive orders signed Thursday by Governor Gretchen Whitmer.

She is also allowing organized sports practices and competitions to resume in regions where they’ve been banned.

GUNDULA VOGEL / PIXABAY

A task force charged with recommending how nursing homes should manage COVID-19 in the event of a second wave submitted its report to Governor Gretchen Whitmer this week.

Gretchen Whitmer at a podium
michigan.gov

Two conservative groups, One Nation and Election Integrity Fund, filed suit in federal court, claiming that Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s Executive Orders violate their rights. Whitmer's orders limit the number of people who can gather in an attempt to avoid spreading the COVID-19 pandemic.

The U.S. Justice Department is asking for data on COVID-19 nursing home deaths from Michigan and other states.

The agency says it’s evaluating whether to initiate investigations under the federal Civil Rights of Institutionalized Persons Act (CRIPA), which protects the civil rights of persons in state-run nursing homes, among others.

Flint water plant
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

This is a developing story. Last update was Thursday August 20 at 5:17 p.m. 

Michigan will pay $600 million to compensate Flint residents whose health was damaged by lead-tainted drinking water after the city heeded state regulators’ advice not to treat it properly.

State Attorney General Dana Nessel confirmed the preliminary settlement Thursday morning, after the details had been leaked to news outlets late Wednesday.

Gretchen Whitmer at a podium
michigan.gov

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer Friday extended her executive order declaring a state of emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic through September 4.

“We are in a crucial time in our fight against COVID-19, and we must do everything we can to protect ourselves, our loved ones, and the brave men and women on the front lines of this crisis from a second wave,” says Whitmer.

Adobe Stock

Governor Gretchen Whitmer is extending the mask requirement to include children as young as two years old in some cases, after several coronavirus outbreaks linked to childcare centers and youth camps.

Gov. Whitmer says by requiring face coverings in her latest executive order, childcare centers and camps can remain open while keeping children and staff members safe.

Gretchen Whitmer at a podium
michigan.gov

An executive directive signed by Governor Gretchen Whitmer declares racism a public health crisis in Michigan.

The directive creates a Black Leadership Advisory Council to identify resources within the executive branch to attack the problem of systemic racism, especially when it comes to health care.

The council will be lead by Lieutenant Governor Garlin Gilchrist. He says the council will identify ways that bias contributes to health disparities.

One of a series of reports looking at Joe Biden's potential running mates


As the coronavirus spread across the country in March, President Trump held a conference call with the nation's governors and reportedly told them they should try to find their own supplies of ventilators and respirators.

SHARI BERNSTEIN

This week a shopper in Meijer in Acme threatened an employee with a knife, upset he was told to wear a mask.

In Lansing, a man was stabbed and in May, a security guard at a Flint dollar store was shot to death.

Northern Michigan businesses say confrontations have increased recently, as customers unhappy with the mask policy harass workers tasked with enforcing the policy.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

President Donald Trump has approved a major disaster declaration for mid-Michigan counties affected by May’s floods.

The president tweeted on Thursday that he approved a major disaster declaration to provide more than $43 million in federal funds to “help the people of the GREAT State of Michigan recover from the recent dam break flooding.” 

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Governor Gretchen Whitmer vetoed a series of tax bills on Wednesday.

The governor described the bills as “a commendable effort” to provide relief to Michiganders during a time of crisis. But Whitmer says she vetoed the bills because local governments told her the bills would create more problems than they would have solved.  

State Representative Jim Lower (R-Greenville) says his bills were intended to give homeowners and business owners more flexibility for paying 2020 summer property taxes due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Expect to see people collecting signatures soon on a petition to repeal the Michigan law that's given Governor Gretchen Whitmer broad emergency powers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Board of State Canvassers approved language for the petition Monday.

people signing petitions
Fraitag.de / Adobe Stock

The Board of State Canvassers will consider two petitions Monday, both related to Governor Gretchen Whitmer's use of emergency powers during the pandemic.

One petition is sponsored by a single individual, Michael Garabelli. It seeks to recall the governor for some of her actions during the coronavirus crisis, including an executive order that prohibited evicting residents from long-term care nursing facilities.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is shutting down indoor bar service in lower Michigan to slow the spread of coronavirus.

But for some bar owners, it could be “last call.”

The governor signed the executive order Wednesday to combat a rise in COVID-19 cases.  

ROV footage of the pipeline along the Straits of Mackinac.
EGLE

Updated 1:14 p.m., June 25, 2020: 

Ingham Circuit Judge James Jamo Thursday ordered Enbridge to fully shut down the Line 5 pipeline at the bottom of the Mackinac Straits within 24 hours.

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel requested the shutdown after Enbridge reported damage to an anchor support.

free weights and exercise machines inside gym
Mark Bertulfo / Unsplash

Most Michiganders will have to wait a little longer before they can return to exercising inside a gym.

A three-judge panel from the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals issued a ruling late Wednesday night siding with Governor Gretchen Whitmer's decision to keep gyms closed in 66 counties across lower Michigan.

Flickr/creative commons / Jeff Clark, BLM

Updated:  6/18/2020

Sixty eight people have died of COVID-19 so far in Michigan prisons, according to the Michigan Department of Corrections.

It's the second highest number of COVID-19 related deaths in a state prison system in the country, according to the non-profit Marshall Project, which is tracking the cases. Ohio is number one for COVID-19 related inmate deaths.

Michigan State Capitol
Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

Governor Gretchen Whitmer and state lawmakers may give themselves more time this year to put together a state budget.

A bill moving through the Legislature would create a one-year reprieve from the July 1 budget deadline.

That date aligns with the fiscal years of local governments and school districts.

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