Employers Must Provide Masks Under Extended Stay Home Order

Governor Gretchen Whitmer today issued Executive Order 2020-59, which modifies and extends the earlier “Stay Home. Stay Safe.” order to May 15, 2020. While the new order does allow some lawn, garden and retail workers to resume in-person work, it does not expand the scope of manufacturing critical infrastructure workers.

Additionally, beginning Monday, April 27, individuals must wear face coverings in public and employers whose workers perform in-person work must provide face coverings for their workers. Employers must provide non-medical grade face coverings at a minimum; supplies of N95 masks and surgical masks should generally be reserved for health care professionals and first responders.

In our conversations with the Whitmer Administration, we understand this to be an incremental step and expect more direction next week. MMA will continue to advocate for the ability of the manufacturing industry to safely reopen to lead solutions to Michigan’s health care crisis and economic crisis.

New & Notable

Legislative Response to Whitmer
COVID-19 Action

The Michigan Legislature met today to pass House Concurrent Resolution 20, which creates a bicameral, bi-partisan oversight committee to review Governor Whitmer’s actions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Joint Select Committee on the COVID-19 Pandemic will consist of 10 legislators and has the power to subpoena and inspect records from any state department, board, institution or agency. The Committee will report a summary of its findings and will issue recommendations for further actions the Legislature can take to address the crisis.

The Senate also passed legislation on party-line votes to limit some of the emergency powers bestowed upon the Governor’s office. Senate Bill 857 (Senator Tom Barrett, R-Charlotte) would repeal the Emergency Powers of the Governors Act, which allows the Governor to proclaim a state of emergency and promulgate reasonable orders, rules and regulations to protect life and property. Senate Bill 858 (Senator Barrett) would limit gubernatorial authority to declare an emergency without legislative consent from 28 days to 14 days.

Today’s action by the Senate set the stage for final passage of the bills by the House during their next scheduled session day on April 30. Governor Whitmer has been clear that she will veto any bills that diminish the powers of her office, foreshadowing a showdown between the legislative and executive branches of Michigan government next week.

MMA Urges Manufacturing Restart

MMA joined with six other Midwest manufacturing associations last week to recognize the importance of the industrial sector and call on their respective state governors to reopen all of manufacturing to reignite the economy. Read the letter here.

MMA Best Practices for Operating
Safely and Productively

MMA is working to support manufacturers as they plan to reopen for greater levels of production. In addition to guidance for worker safety procedures, MMA’s Best Practices for Operating Safely and Productively will connect manufacturers with critical suppliers, service providers and trusted experts who can support their efforts to scale up operations in a safe manner.

If your company is uniquely positioned to support manufacturers as they work to bring the industry back to full strength, contact Delaney McKinley, MMA Vice President of Membership and Marketing, at mckinley@mimfg.org or 517-487-8530.

Additional Funding Approved for Small Businesses

The federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) will receive an infusion of $310 billion under legislation passed by Congress and signed by President Donald J. Trump today.

The initial $350 billion in the program, which provides critical funding for small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic, was quickly exhausted though more than 43,000 Michigan companies received over $10 billion in loans from the first round of PPP funding. An additional $60 billion will also be directed to small business through Economic Injury Disaster Loans.

Learn more about how to access these and other programs available to support your company’s financial needs in MMA’s COVID-19 Financial Relief Tool Kit.

Resources for Manufacturers

Clark Hill’s webinar on Tuesday, 4/28/20, will provide guidance and insight into issues associated with reopening workplaces, such as dealing with retaliation, continued requests for telework and/or the refusal to return to work, the development of pandemic policies and more. Register online.

Stay updated and compliant with the many changes imposed over the last few weeks. Find state, federal and member resources on MMA’s COVID-19 Resources.

Please continue to reach out to the MMA team with questions.