Whitmer extends coronavirus state of emergency until Oct. 1 – MLive.com

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Gov. Gretchen Whitmer extended her emergency powers another four weeks, signing a new executive order extending Michigan’s coronavirus state of emergency until Oct. 1.

The state of emergency would have expired after 11:59 p.m. on Friday, Sep. 4 without the governor’s action.

Whitmer extends coronavirus state of emergency through Friday, Sept. 4

Executive Order 2020-177 allows “the state to continue to mobilize resources and take the reasonable and necessary steps to protect Michiganders and their families,” according to a governor’s office release.

“By extending the state of emergency, we can continue the crucial work needed to save lives,” Whitmer said in the release. “Since March, I have been committed to using every tool at my disposal to protect families, frontline workers, and our economy from the threat of COVID-19. I urge Michiganders to do their part by wearing a mask, practicing physical distancing and staying safe and smart.”

Whitmer pointed to positive developments in the state’s response to the pandemic, such as its 3.3% positive test rate versus the national average of 6.1%. She also pointed to recent surges in cases in “every region” of the state. Counties with universities saw the biggest case increases.

Thursday, Sept. 3, coronavirus data by Michigan county: Virus surges in four counties with colleges

“The science continues to show that this virus can affect everyone, including children,” she said in the release. “In fact, in an alarming trend, both nationwide and here in Michigan, younger people have constituted a growing share of new cases. In order to protect public health, everyone must continue to do their part to fight COVID-19 by wearing a mask, staying physically distant and limiting large social gatherings under the governor’s orders.”

The state of emergency is different than the stay-at-home order, which Whitmer lifted in June.

Michigan gyms and pools are allowed to reopen starting Sept. 9, and high school sports can take place under another Thursday move from Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

Whitmer reopens gyms, giving the green light to high school sports

Under Executive Order 175 and 176, they can reopen at 25% capacity with strict safety protocols, including that attendees must maintain six feet of physical distance and wear masks even while working out.

Bowling alleys, roller rinks, and ice rinks can reopen solely for the purpose of hosting organized sporting events.

The governor also announced organized sports could resume statewide under new guidance issued by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

COVID-19 PREVENTION TIPS:

In addition to washing hands regularly and not touching your face, officials recommend practicing social distancing, assuming anyone may be carrying the virus.

Health officials say you should be staying at least 6 feet away from others and working from home, if possible.

Use disinfecting wipes or disinfecting spray cleaners on frequently-touched surfaces in your home (door handles, faucets, countertops) and carry hand sanitizer with you when you go into places like stores.

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has also issued executive orders requiring people to wear face coverings over their mouth and nose while in public indoor and crowded outdoor spaces. See an explanation of what that means here.

Additional information is available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus.

For more data on COVID-19 in Michigan, visit https://www.mlive.com/coronavirus/data/.

Related stories:

Michigan gyms in crisis as some flout the law and others bleed out

Michigan’s 10-person limit on indoor gatherings comes with a full slate of exceptions

Saginaw Township gym fined $2,100 over coronavirus violations

Judge sides with Gov. Whitmer in Emagine lawsuit over theater closures

Gov. Whitmer ‘not going to be bullied’ into opening still-closed businesses like gyms and theaters

Michigan’s GOP State Board of Ed members ask governor to allow fall high school sports

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