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STATE NEWS for FRI 03APR20
84-year-old man in the U-P's Chippewa County was killed on his 53rd
wedding anniversary. The man's son reportedly says his father pulled out
of his driveway and was hit by a pickup truck in Dafter Township early
A 62-year-old man was seriously injured in a crash in southern lower
Michigan's Newton Township in Calhoun County. The Sheriff's Office says
the man hit a tree yesterday afternoon and was flown to a hospital in
Kalamazoo. The cause of the crash is being investigated.
mom is an intensive care unit nurse at a hospital so a 12-year-old boy
from Sault Ste. Marie is making headbands for ICU nurses in the area.
Reece Wyckoff is sewing buttons onto headbands to War Memorial Hospital to
help relieve the pressure from face masks on their ears. His mother,
Danyalle, tells 9 and 10 News that because they wear their masks for so
long, their skin and ears start to hurt and their skin starts to break
down. She says he was worried that if their ears hurt, they would take
their masks off.
If you violate one of Gretchen Whitmer's new executive orders
related to the COVID-19 pandemic you could face a fine or even go to jail.
The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services says you could face
fines of up to 1-THOUSAND dollars or even spend up to 90 days in jail if
you violate the stay-at-home order. A non-essential business found
operating could be forced to close permanently and be subject to
discipline from their licensing board.
is the time to get creative when “social distancing” keeps you at a
distance from getting physical. Relationship expert Doctor Joe Kort says
if you’re single, dating apps, video chats and even old-fashioned phone
calls can help you improve your flirting and conversation skills. And he
says couples in long distance relationships can also use technology to
share and connect in intimate ways. Kort says “stay home” doesn’t mean an
end to dating or relationships. It’s just about finding new ways to
connect so that when “dinner and movie” returns to the real world bonds
can be even stronger.
The pediatrician who exposed the Flint water crisis back in 2015,
Dr. Mona HannaAttisha, has tested positive for Coronavirus. Dr. Hanna
Attisha revealed the diagnosis on Twitter and says she's doing fine. She
says she's been sick since mid-March and she's not sure where she got
it...although she was in New York in early March. She says she shared her
diagnosis because she wants others who are getting better to do something
good, such as donating their convalescent plasma for a possible treatment.
organization One Fair Wage has received a major boost from Detroit native,
comedian Lily Tomlin. Tomlin, who co-stars with Jane Fonda in the popular
Netflix show, “Grace and Frankie,” donated 100-thousand-dollars to the
emergency fund to help service workers in Michigan. The fund will provide
cash assistance to workers who have been hard hit due to the shutdowns
caused by the Coronavirus. One Fair Wage also received a combined
$250-thousand-dollars from Slack CEO Stewart Butterfield and Away
co-founder Jen Rubio. Workers who are in need of assistance can apply on
One Fair Wage’s website.
Homeless shelters are seeing a jump in the need for services in west
Michigan. WOOD TV reports the president and CEO of Mel Trotter Ministries,
Dennis Van Kampen, says they're seeing an increase in singles of about
25-percent. He says if Mel Trotter suddenly closed tonight, there would be
almost 400 people who would be on the streets with no one to care for
them. He says they're coming into the shelter because he thinks they're
scared. They are practicing social distancing among the homeless at the
an effort to help hospitalized patients battling covid-19 communicate with
their loved ones. Once a patient is hospitalized, they are isolated and
not allowed to have visitors. The Auto Club Group (Triple-A) is donating
100 tablets to Beaumont Health system for patients in isolation to use to
talk with loved ones. Triple-A says this is an effort to help those
working on the front lines and possibly those being treated for virus.
Tablets will be delivered Friday by Triple-A’s roadside assistance team.
Detroit Pistons are teaming up with Wayne County and several corporate
partners to announce a $375,000 grant to Forgotten Harvest. Pistons Owner
Tom Gores says "The community needs everyone to come together now more
than ever,” Forgotten Harvest delivers 138,000 pounds of surplus food per
day to local charities six days a week, providing families in need with
fresh and nutritious food free of charge.
STATE NEWS for THU 02APR20
Gretchen Whitmer announced this morning that the entire school year is
over. Lansing Bureau Chief Tim Skubick reports Whitmer agrees with House
republicans that some type of online learning should take place by
mid-May. She will call for the Fall semester to begin in August, before
Labor Day. Local school districts will decide the graduation requirements
so seniors can graduate on time.
Governor Whitmer is asking state lawmakers to extend Michigan's
state of emergency by 70 days, but one leading Republican thinks that's
too much. But Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey says that he plans to
work with the governor because he feels that "emergency circumstances
persist." The governor's original state of emergency declaration is set to
expire next Tuesday. Meantime, the governor's "stay home, stay safe" order
is in effect until April 13th.
has now been a death in Grand Traverse County due to the Coronavirus, the
county's first. 9 and 10 News reports that the county health department
says the man was in his 60's. Health officer Wendy Hirschenberger says
“Although we anticipated we would eventually have to make this
announcement, it doesn’t make it any easier. She says their thoughts are
with the family and friends directly affected by this death, as well as
the Munson medical staff that provided care for their community member".
West Michigan hospitals are getting ready for an increase in
patients due to the Coronavirus pandemic. WOOD TV reports the Institute
for Health Metrics and Evaluation indicates Michigan will reach peak
resource use for COVID-19 patients on April 9th. It's expected that more
than two thousand ventilators will be needed along with more than
25-hundred intensive care unit beds. The I-H-M-E says the state has 742
ICU beds and a published report says there are 17-hundred ventilators in
Michigan. Hospitals are trying to acquire more.
Sheldon Neeley says starting today, there will be a city-wide curfew
nightly from nine p-m to six a-m and it'll be in effect for 30 days.
People caught violating curfew could be charged with a misdemeanor, which
carries penalties including a 500-dollar fine and 30 days in jail.
Residents who are considered 'vulnerable', and are already staying home
virtually all the time, can sign up for home delivery of water starting
The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services is requesting
federal approval of flexibilities for the state’s Medicaid Program that
are consistent with the commitment of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Chief
Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun (Je-Nay Kal-doon) to keep Michigan’s
most vulnerable residents safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. It's making
the request to the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to
temporarily waive a number of Medicaid requirements. Whitmer says
Michiganders need easy access to healthcare coverage now more than ever.
volunteer fire department in Newberry in the eastern U-P is helping people
during this COVID-19 pandemic. It's reportedly taking grocery orders from
people who can't go to the store. They are making about one delivery a
day, but they expect that to increase in the coming weeks.
A southwest Michigan couple is getting creative since they're getting
married this weekend. Because of the Coronavirus pandemic, Dan Stuglik (Stewg-lik)
and Amy Simonson, of Coloma Township, won't be able to have the 150 guests
they had invited, so they'll get married in front of a cardboard audience.
Stuglik went to Menasha Packaging to buy cardboard, but the company made
the people cutouts as a gift to the couple.
Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network are expanding coverage
for services related to COVID-19, waiving all member co-pays, deductibles
and coinsurance for COVID-19 testing and treatment. The coverage applies
to commercial PPO, Medicare Advantage PPO and HMO plans.
If you've been in downtown Detroit in the last couple of years, you've
seen plenty of electric scooters on the sidewalks, ready for anybody to
pick up and ride for a fee. But, of the three companies that had scooters
in the city, all but one have picked up and left. Bird and Lime are gone
while only Spin has remained. Spin is owned by Ford Motor Company.
STATE NEWS for WED 01APR20
isn't just lethal for the elderly, a 24-year old political intern is among
the latest suspected victims. Ben Hirschmann, who was working as an intern
for Michigan State Senator Pete Lucido, died yesterday. In a statement,
Hirschmann's family says "he was full of love and compassion. His father
and I and his three siblings ache for his loss. The loss is not
definable." An autopsy is pending.
more Michiganders head to northern Michigan to get away from higher
concentrations of confirmed Coronavirus cases, officials in some northern
cities want visitors to self quarantine for at least 14 days. That's
reportedly so they won't spread the virus. A spokesperson for Munson
Healthcare says don't go to the grocery store or the pharmacy or seek
healthcare unless absolutely necessary because that's how they can help
control the spread to their community.
west Michigan man's family had to tell him goodbye through an I-Pad when
he died from Coronavirus last month. WOOD TV reports 71-year-old Lee Burns
died at Spectrum Health Blodgett Hospital in east Grand Rapids due to complications of
COVID-19. He did have underlying health conditions. His daughter Angie
Lynn Denny says the most that he did was go down to the grocery store and
she says that is a wake-up call. Burns lived in a senior apartment complex
with his wife.
Transit service in Grand Rapids is limiting the number of passengers on
its buses as a way for passengers to have social distance from one
another. DASH buses will have only 10 passengers at a time. Only 15
passengers will be allowed on Silver Line and other fixed route buses. If
a bus is at capacity, it will only stop for people to get off.
Auto Workers at Ford's Flat Rock Assembly Plant are being asked to help
make respirators as part of the nationwide effort to fight Coronavirus, or
COVID-19. According to the Facebook page for Local 3000, which represents
those workers, robo-calls were going out last night to ask for volunteers.
There are two shifts. One at 6am and one at 6pm. Work will
likely start next week.
Michigan DNR is closing the Tippy Dam Recreation Area in Manistee County
until further notice to help slow the spread of the Coronavirus. The DNR
says it observed many instances of improper social distancing and visitors
traveling a long way to visit these outdoor spaces. It says Tippy Dam has
seen a drastic increase in visitors and this type of nonessential travel
could unintentionally increase the spread of COVID-19/ All other state
parks and recreation areas remain open , but the DNR says social
distancing practices must be adhered to in order to keep these open.
77-year-old Toledo man is dead, following a head-on crash in Monroe
County. Sheriff's deputies say that Tuesday's crash was in Bedford
Township, near the Ohio border. Police say it appears that the victim was
heading eastbound when he crossed into oncoming traffic and struck a
pickup truck. The 38-year-old driver of the pickup truck, also from
Toledo, was taken to an area hospital and is expected to recover. Police
don't think excessive speed played a role in the crash.
is legal but large gatherings currently are not. So, instead of taking
place in Ann Arbor on UofM's campus. The annual "Hash Bash" will be
online this year. Held yearly on the first Saturday of April since 1972,
the rally will still feature speakers like actor Tommy Chong, famed grower
DJ Short and former Detroit Red Wing star Darren McCarty. The virtual
party starts at noon this Saturday on Planet-Green-Trees-TV-dot-com.
STATE NEWS for TUE 31MAR20
head of West Michigan’s largest hospital system says the capacity for
Coronavirus patients could be
by early May. Spectrum Health President and CEO Tina Freese Decker made
the statement in a video statement last night. Decker said the system
overload would last for many weeks. Spectrum has taken a number of steps
to increase hospital capacity, but Decker says that unless residents
maintain social distancing rules the 13-county hospital system will still
be overwhelmed by infected patients.
Berrien County Health Department is reporting its first death of a
resident from the Coronavirus. The person who died was a man over the age
of 70 who was hospitalized at Lakeland Medical Center in St. Joseph. He
did have serious underlying health conditions. The county currently has 32
positive cases of COVID-19, including this reported death. Most of these
individuals are recovering from their symptoms at home, and at this time,
10 of those positive cases are known to have fully recovered from their
salaried employees will have to live with 20-percent less pay for the next
3 months. CEO Mike Manley says the measure comes as Fiat Chrysler is
trying to avoid permanent layoffs. Manley will
a fifty percent pay cut during that time, and other top executives will
also take a thirty percent cut. Fiat Chrysler board members will receive
no compensation for the rest of the year.
report says that Governor Whitmer will likely order that Michigan schools
will remain closed for the rest of the school year. According to Bridge
Magazine, she's expected to sign an executive order in the coming days to
officially close public and private K-12 schools due to the Coronavirus
pandemic. While sources said it was not finalized, that order is expected
to include details of some form of remote learning through the rest of the
school year. Under the plan, high school seniors would graduate and other
students would be promoted to the next grade.
first case of Coronavirus has been confirmed in Mackinac County. The Luce,
Mackinac, Alger Schoolcraft District Health Department says the person has
a history of recent domestic travel, and has been hospitalized outside of
the region. The LMAS District Health Department will notify people who
have been identified as close contacts, but will not be disclosing
additional information about the individual.
coming to Girl Scout cookie sales because of the Coronavirus. The Girl
Scouts organization says it has suspended door-to-door sales and cookie
booths to protect scouts from the Coronavirus. However,
lovers can still stock up on their favorites by shopping online at
GirlScouts.org. Shoppers can choose to have their orders shipped directly
to them or they can opt to have their purchases sent to first responders,
volunteers or other local causes.
all North American auto plants remain closed, even though they were
scheduled to re-open by this date. All indications are shut down orders
will remain in place through this month and it's too early to tell if
carmakers will try to get any plants up and running earlier. The
automakers say their reopening decisions will be guided by safety.
restaurants are now able to sell meat, produce, toilet paper and other
products, just like grocery stores. The Michigan Department of Agriculture
and Rural Development is teaming up with the Michigan Restaurant and
Lodging Association to train restaurants on proper labeling, so they can
begin selling food and pantry items. The state says this opportunity can
help the supply chain move in more directions. Although some restaurant
owners are saying it doesn’t make sense for them financially.
Governor Gretchen Whitmer's order, Michigan’s marijuana industry is
considered an essential business and that’s leading to a boom in sales.
The 76 cannabis retailers in Michigan had their best week ever earlier
this month. During the week of March 16th recreational sales rose more
than 20-percent to five-point-eight million (5.8M) dollars while medical
sales jumped 27-percent to seven-point-nine million dollars. The stricter
restrictions on social distancing from the governor have led dispensaries
to institute curbside pick-ups and delivery of marijuana.
STATE NEWS for MON 30MAR20
Gretchen Whitmer has signed another executive order, this one to protect
the employees and the inmate population of Michigan's Department of
Corrections during the COVID-19 outbreak. Anybody going into or coming out
of Michigan's prisons will be screened for the
Visits to inmates are halted. Only lawyers are allowed to visit their
clients in jail. The order also calls on
county sheriff's to do what they can to limit the population of local
jails by releasing older or ill inmates or those that are of the lowest
risk to society. Transfers to and from Michigan's prisons and jails will
Production of surgical masks begins today at General Motors' old Warren
Transmission plant. The needed machinery was delivered Friday. The
expectation is to make 50- thousand masks daily within the next two weeks
before reaching 100-thousand per day
based on the materials available. GM
says the employee-led initiative was created, planned and approved in
about 48 hours with the automaker's normal supply base along with new
partnerships in the medical device industry.