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Whitmer extends state of emergency

Gretchen Whitmer at a podium

The COVID-19 state of emergency in Michigan has been extended by Governor Gretchen Whitmer through October 27.

This action is not a surprise since Governor Whitmer already said she intended to renew the emergency declaration. But it’s still controversial since her authority to do so and continue to issue emergency orders is being challenged in court.

Michigan has been in a state of emergency since March 10, and the governor said the emergency will continue as long as COVID-19 poses a threat to public health and safety, as well as to the state’s economy.

In her order, the governor said the emergency exists as long as COVID-19 poses a threat to the state’s economy, public health, and safety.

From her order:

Statewide coordination of these efforts is crucial to creating a stable path to recovery. Until that recovery is underway, the economic and fiscal harms from this pandemic have been contained, and the threats posed by COVID-19 to life and the public health, safety, and welfare of this state have been neutralized, statewide disaster and emergency conditions will exist.

The governor also extended emergency orders that restrict entry into health care, residential,  and juvenile justice facilities – with some limited exceptions. Also extended are protocols for jails and prisons, and requiring food stores to offer restricted shopping hours for people vulnerable to infection.

Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987.
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