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Dear Friends,

I continue to work on behalf of you and your families during these troubling times.

As we continue our efforts to get Michigan back to work safely, and allow people to provide for their families, I want to provide you with a brief update with the latest resources and information on what’s happening at our state Capitol.

Are you or a loved one still experiencing issues receiving your unemployment assistance? If so, please visit so my office can assist you with your claim.

As always, my office is open remotely and my staff and I are available to assist you. You may contact us by emailing [email protected] or by telephone at 1-855-347-8034. Let me know if I can assist you in any way or if you have an idea to help move our state forward.

Also, please check out my Facebook page for updates.


Jon Bumstead
State Senator
34th District

Bumstead offers assistance to those having difficulty receiving UIA benefits

Michigan residents who have lost their jobs because of COVID-19 are struggling to get unemployment benefits.

The Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) was not prepared for the massive influx of claims and the inability of the agency to react to help those who are unemployed is not acceptable.

If you are a resident of Muskegon, Newaygo or Oceana counties and need assistance with your claim, please visit this link. My team will work on your behalf to get you the unemployment benefits you are entitled to.

If you have already contacted my office, please know that we are working on your case and waiting for responses from the UIA. If you have not reached out, you may contact us by emailing [email protected] or by telephone at 1-855-347-8034.

Bumstead highlights Mental Health Awareness Month

May is National Mental Health Awareness Month. During the month of May, residents of Michigan help break down the barriers that people may be facing when struggling with mental health issues in silence, especially while many people are at home due to COVID-19.

One of every five Americans is affected by mental health issues, and many are stigmatized by shame, fear and anxiety. This often leads to silence, instead of speaking out or seeking help.

This month helps get the word out that if you are suffering with mental health issues, you are not alone and there are people and programs waiting to help.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services provides many resources for those looking for local mental health services. If you or a loved one needs support, call the 1-888-733-7753 peer support specialist line from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. seven days a week.

In the news

$3.3 million in financial relief provided to nearly 700 bar and restaurant owners

The hospitality industry has taken one of the largest blows during the COVID-19 pandemic. To help provide relief to this struggling industry, Gov. Whitmer implemented a spirits buyback program with the Michigan Liquor Control Commission. The buyback program provided an average of over $5,000 to 657 hospitality businesses.

Pursuant to the governor’s Executive Order 2020-46, the one-of-a-kind program offered a 100% cash buyback to on-premise liquor licensees for spirits they had ordered from the commission prior to March 16, 2020. Licensees keep possession of the products the commission bought back, with no bottles being picked up. Bars and restaurants have 90 days after emergency declarations are lifted to repurchase the inventory by selling it when they’re back open for business and pay the commission back interest free.

Read more.

ER visits plummet amid pandemic: ‘More people are dying at home”

When COVID-19 first hit the Detroit area, hospitals urged sick people to stay at home. Now they’re saying come back because the original message, compounded with fears, came at a cost:

Heart attack victims died at home. Stoke patients let symptoms go unchecked for too long. Fractures from falls were left untreated or worsened.

Doctors say, this is due to fallout from COVID-19, a virus that has people so scared that they’re letting life-threating aliments go unchecked. Nationwide, nearly a third of American adults, 29%, say that they have delayed or avoided medical care because of concerns of contracting COVID-19.

Read more.

State factories to restart work next week

Some auto manufacturing and supply companies are being allowed to resume operations on Monday, one week ahead of General Motors and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV’s planned May 18 restart.

“This is good news for our state, our businesses, and our working families,” Whitmer said in a statement. “We’re not out of the woods yet, but this is an important step forward on our MI Safe Start plan to re-engage our economy safely and responsibly. As we continue to phase in sectors of our economy, I will keep working around the clock to ensure our businesses adopt best practices to protect workers from the spread of COVID-19. When we all keep doing our part, we can reduce the risk of a second wave and re-engage our economy safely and responsibly.”

Read more.

Expiration of Michigan’s emergency declaration

An extension from the Legislature is needed in order for the governor to continue to issue and enforce executive orders like the one she issued to close businesses and direct residents to stay at home.

Instead of extending the executive order, the Legislature passed a bill to continue the necessary policies like the current extension of unemployment benefits, liability protection for health care workers, and the ability for schools to continue distance learning programs, among others. Unfortunately, the governor vetoed that legislation.

Despite the fact that the Legislature did not approve an extension, Gov. Whitmer chose to reissue the emergency declaration and new executive orders. We believe the governor is acting beyond her authority and the Legislature has filed a lawsuit. It is now up to the courts to decide.

The Legislature has done everything in our power to end the emergency declaration and several of the orders issued by the governor. We expect she will continue to enforce her orders while the legal process plays out, and as such, we do not recommend that any resident defy the governor’s orders. Doing so may result in fines or other actions from law enforcement.

I would encourage you to consult with your own legal counsel if you have questions specific to your business. Unfortunately, Gov. Whitmer has made the situation in our state worse for individuals and businesses who are looking for clarity and a path forward to safely reopen their establishments.

Until then, I will continue to work with my colleagues in the Legislature to make sure the voices of our constituents are heard. In the meantime, I encourage you to contact the governor and let her know how her actions have impacted your life and your livelihood.

Recent executive orders

Governor signs executive order extending safety measures protecting consumers, employees

Gov. Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-71, which extends existing safety measures to protect consumers and employees at grocery stores and pharmacies until May 29, 2020. The order also extends temporary relief from licensing requirements for food sellers and pharmacies.

The extended executive order establishes the following guidelines:

Customers who can medically tolerate a face covering must wear one when entering a grocery store or pharmacy.
Grocery stores and pharmacies must allocate at least two hours per week of shopping time for vulnerable populations.
If an employee tests positive for COVID-19, the business must notify other employees without infringing on private health information.

Read more.

Whitmer extends executive order protecting vulnerable residents in congregate care settings

On Sunday, Gov. Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-72, which extends until May 31, 2020 the rules regarding entry to care facilities designed to protect vulnerable populations and mitigate the spread of COVID-19. The order replaces the governors previous order, 2020-37. The order requires employees of facilities covered by the order to wear face coverings while working within a facility.

In order to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and protect the health and safety of both the staff, patients and individuals under the facilities care, the order prohibits any visitors who are not necessary or essential to the services of care from entering health care facilities.

Read more.

Governor extends executive orders enabling remote transactions, easing fuel tax requirements for transporting essential personnel and supplies

Gov. Whitmer signed executive orders 2020-73 and 74, extending two executive orders signed last month to help protect the health and safety of all Michiganders during the continuing COVID-19 pandemic.

The orders continue to temporarily allow e-signatures on official documents and remote notarizations to avoid unnecessary in-person contact. The order also continues to temporarily suspend licensing, decal and trip permit requirements used by the Department of Treasury to collect taxes owed by motor carriers.

Read more.

Whitmer extends executive order allowing public bodies to meet remotely

Gov. Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-75, which extends a previous executive order that allows public bodies to conduct remote public meetings during the COVID-19 pandemic. The order is now set to expire on June 30, 2020.

Under the order, public bodies subject to the Open Meetings Act, including boards, commissions, committees, subcommittees, authorities, councils and nonprofit boards, can use telephone or video conferencing to continue meeting and conducting business during coronavirus crisis. They still must meet certain procedures, listed below:

Ensure two-way communication for members and the public to hear and address each other when speaking.
Provide adequate notice to the public of the meeting.
Post a public meeting notice on their website.
Permit participants to record or broadcast the public meeting.
Allow participants to address the public body during a public comment period.

Read more.

Governor extends Stay Home, Stay Safe order, reopens manufacturing

Yesterday, Gov. Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-77 to extend Michigan’s Stay Home, Stay Safe order to May 28. The governor’s order will allow manufacturing workers to resume work on Monday, May 11 as part of the MI Safe Start Plan.

Under Executive Order 2020-77, manufacturing facilities must adopt measures to protect their workers from the spread of COVID-19. These measures include conducting daily entry screening protocols for workers and everyone else entering the facility, including a questionnaire covering symptoms and exposure to people with possible COVID-19. Also, facilities must implement temperature screening as soon as no-touch thermometers can be obtained. They must also create dedicated entry points at every facility and suspend entry of all nonessential in-person visits, including tours.

Read more.

Recent executive orders

Executive Order 2020-72 – Temporary restrictions on entry into health care facilities, residential care facilities, congregate care facilities, and juvenile justice facilities.

Executive Order 2020-73 – Temporary relief from certain credentialing requirements for motor carriers transporting essential supplies, equipment, and persons.

Executive Order 2020-74 – Encouraging the use of electronic signatures and remote notarization, witnessing, and visitation during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Executive Order 2020-75 – Temporary authorization of remote participation in public meetings and hearings and temporary relief from monthly meeting requirements for school boards.

Executive Order 2020-76 – Temporary expansion in unemployment eligibility and cost-sharing.

Executive Order 2020-77 – Temporary requirement to suspend certain activities that are not necessary to sustain or protect life.

Additional information on the governor’s executive orders and other state news can be found here.

Michigan's 34th Senate District

The 34th State Senate District includes the counties of Muskegon, Newaygo, and Oceana.

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Thank you for subscribing to my electronic newsletter! I am honored to represent you in the state Senate. As always, please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or concerns. Please feel free to forward this on to others who may be interested in receiving the 34th District E-news. You may sign up for it also at my website.

Senator Jon Bumstead
4600 Connie Binsfeld Building
P.O. Box 30036
Lansing, MI 48909-7536

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