FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 27, 2023
I-75 closing between US-24 and Saginaw Road/Dixie Highway for bridge demolition near the Oakland/Genesee county line
VILLAGE OF CLARKSTON, Mich. – Beginning 9 p.m. Friday, Aug. 4, I-75 will be closed in each direction between US-24 and Saginaw Road for the demolition of the Rattalee Lake Road bridge over I-75. All traffic will be detoured onto Dixie Highway. Work is expected to be completed by 5 a.m. Monday, Aug. 7.
Northbound I-75 traffic will take US-24 (Dixie Highway) Exit 93 in the village of Clarkston and continue north to I-75 in Genesee County.
Southbound I-75 traffic will be detoured in Grand Blanc Township and exit at Dixie Highway/Saginaw Road Exit 106, continuing on Dixie Highway to I-75 in Oakland County.
The Michigan Department of Transportation is investing approximately $160 million to resurface and repair I-75 from M-15 (Ortonville Road) to the Oakland/Genesee county line. This project includes resurfacing I-75, repairing 11 bridges, drainage improvements, culvert replacements, signs, and guardrail. Various work will be performed in different locations with different schedules throughout the 15 miles over four years, with overall project completion expected in 2026.
Funding for this project is made possible by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s Rebuilding Michigan program to rebuild the state highways and bridges that are critical to the state’s economy and carry the most traffic. The investment strategy is aimed at fixes that result in longer useful lives and improve the condition of the state’s infrastructure.
Based on economic modeling, this investment is expected to directly and indirectly support 1,936 jobs.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 27, 2023
Contact: [email protected]
Governor Whitmer Makes Appointments to Boards and Commissions
LANSING, Mich. — Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced the following appointments to the Elevator Safety Board, Michigan Unarmed Combat Commission, Water Use Advisory, and Michigan Council for Rehabilitation Services.
Today’s appointees represent Michigan’s young professionals, communities of color, seniors, and more. The appointees announced this week build on Governor Whitmer’s work to ensure appointees reflect Michigan’s diverse population. Sixty percent of appointees are women or people of color, and the Whitmer cabinet is the most diverse in Michigan history.
Elevator Safety Board
Joshua Jacobs, of Leroy, is a serviceman for Elevator Services in Grand Rapids since 2022 and has over 24 years of experience in the elevator industry. He is a licensed Elevator Journeyperson and Elevator Contractor and completed journeyperson training with the National Elevator Industry Education Program. Mr. Jacobs is reappointed to represent manufacturers of elevators used in this state for a term commencing July 27, 2023, and expiring July 22, 2027.
The Elevator Safety Board promulgates rules and prepares examinations in relation to contractor licenses. The Board also conducts hearings to determine whether an elevator contractor license or certificate of competency or commission should be suspended or revoked.
This appointment is subject to the advice and consent of the Senate.
Michigan Unarmed Combat Commission
Byron Osbern, of Detroit, is a Business Representative for IBEW Local 58. Additionally, he has also held positions on the Detroit Charter Commission 2018, Detroit Board of Ethics, Detroit Mayors Workforce Development Board, and the Detroit Brownfield Redevelopment Authority Community Council. Mr. Osbern is reappointed to represent the general public for a term commencing July 27, 2023, and expiring June 5, 2027.
The Michigan Unarmed Combat Commission is the successor to the Michigan Boxing Commission and is responsible for the regulation of professional boxing and mixed martial arts. The Commission and the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs are vested with management, control, and jurisdiction over all professional boxing, professional or amateur mixed martial arts, or unarmed combat contests or events conducted in this state.
These appointments are subject to the advice and consent of the Senate.
Water Use Advisory Council
Frank Ettawageshik, of Harbor Springs, is a founding member of Michigan Tribal Advocates and serves as the Executive Director of United Tribes of Michigan. He has a long history of leadership within the tribal community, first as a member of the board, vice chairman, and eventually as Chairman of the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians. Mr. Ettawageshik is reappointed to represent Indian Tribes, for a term commencing July 27, 2023, and expiring February 26, 2027.
Dave Hamilton, of Haslett, is a retired water management professional having most recently served as a senior policy advisor for The Nature Conservancy. He also held numerous positions in the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality over the course of his career all relating to water use and management. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Agricultural Engineering from MSU and a Master of Science in Civil Engineering, Water Resources from MIT. Mr. Hamilton is reappointed to represent statewide conservation organizations, for a term commencing July 27, 2023, and expiring February 26, 2027.
Katy Lindstrom, of Saline, is a Senior Environmental Engineer at Barr Engineering Co. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Engineering from Michigan Tech, and a Master of Science in Hydrologic Science and Engineering from the Colorado School of Mines. Ms. Lindstrom is appointed to represent professional hydrologists and hydrogeologists, as defined in section 32706c, with hydrogeology field experience, for a term commencing July 27, 2023, and expiring February 26, 2027. She succeeds James Nicholas, whose term has expired.
Dave Maturen, of Vicksburg, is currently the president of the Michigan Lakes & Streams Association. He is also a former member of the state house representing the 63rd district from 2015 to 2018 holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration and a Master of Public Administration degree from Western Michigan University. Mr. Maturen is appointed to represent a statewide riparian landowners association, for a term commencing July 27, 2023, and expiring February 26, 2027. He succeeds Mike Gallagher, whose term has expired.
Patrick J. Staskiewicz, P.E., of Grand Haven, is the Public Utilities Director at Ottawa County Road Commission. He holds a Bachelor of Science, Civil and Environmental Engineering from Michigan State. He also holds a Professional Engineer license in the state of Michigan and Waterworks System Operator licenses from EGLE: S-1 (water distribution), D-2 (limited treatment). He has over 30 years of experience in municipal drinking water and wastewater systems and is the Past-Director of the Michigan Section, American Water Works Association (AWWA) and is a Past-Vice-President of AWWA. Mr. Staskiewicz is reappointed to represent municipal water suppliers, for a term commencing July 27, 2023, and expiring February 26, 2027.
The Water Use Advisory Council advises the Department of Environmental Quality, Department of Natural Resources, and Department of Agriculture and Rural Development on the State’s Water Use Program, which includes the following major elements: Great Lakes Compact; water withdrawal; and water use conflict.
These appointments are not subject to advice and consent of the Senate.
Michigan Council for Rehabilitation Services
Margi Williams, of Mattawan, is the Managing Partner and Career/Transition Employment Specialist at Diversified Career Services. She has a bachelor’s of business administration from Baker College, and a Master of Science in Industrial and Organizational Psychology from Baker College. Ms. Williams is appointed to represent business, industry or labor for a term commencing July 27, 2023, and expiring December 31, 2024.
Kelsey Hockaday, of Midland, is the Quality Assurance Manager at the Disability Network of Mid-Michigan. She holds a Bachelor of Science in History from Northern Michigan University. Ms. Hockaday is appointed to represent business, industry or labor for a term commencing July 27, 2023, and expiring December 31, 2024.
Kathryn Flagstadt, of Marquette, is retired as the Site Manager at Michigan Rehabilitaion Services. She is a member of the State Employee Retirees Association, and the Marquette County Aging Services Advisory Committee. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and Management from Northern Michigan University and a Master of Social Work from Michigan State University. Ms. Flagstadt appointed to represent vocational rehabilitation programs for a term commencing July 27, 2023, and expiring December 31, 2025.
The Michigan Council for Rehabilitation Services reviews, analyzes, and advises Michigan’s rehabilitation programs and services, and advises the department director and Governor. The Council works in partnership with Michigan Rehabilitation Services (MRS) and the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs’ Bureau of Services for Blind Persons (LEO-BSBP).
These appointments are not subject to the advice and consent of the Senate.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 26, 2023
CONTACT: Lynn Sutfin, 517-241-2112, SutfinL1@
Medicaid beneficiaries will continue to have an extra
LANSING, Mich. – The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) announced today that Medicaid beneficiaries with upcoming deadlines for returning renewal forms will have an extra month to submit paperwork to avoid loss of health care coverage due to not responding. This timeline will continue monthly going forward through May 2024 and does include individuals with a Monday, July 31 deadline.
“MDHHS is taking proactive steps to ensure that Medicaid recipients have as much time as possible to submit their renewal paperwork,” said MDHHS Director Elizabeth Hertel. “Our goal is to preserve health benefits for all qualifying residents and will continue to use every option available to achieve that outcome.”
Today’s action is the latest effort by MDHHS to preserve Medicaid and Healthy Michigan Plan eligibility for residents as requirements for annual renewals have resumed following the COVID-19 pandemic. MDHHS will work with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to delay procedural terminations for future months to ensure beneficiaries have adequate time to complete and submit renewal paperwork.
Previously, the department gave Medicaid beneficiaries who had been asked to return forms by June 30 another month, with a new deadline of Monday, July 31 before they would be disqualified for not responding. That approach was successful with approximately 15,000 additional renewals in July and, as a result, MDHHS decided to apply that strategy going forward to this first year of eligibility renewals after the pandemic.
That deadline for the June cohort doesn’t extend further based on today’s announcement. Additional information about new due dates can be found in the Eligibility Timeline.
Additional MDHHS efforts to help Michiganders keep their coverage are possible as a result of the CMS approving new flexibilities and strategies to state officials to lessen the impact of the resumption of Medicaid renewals.
MDHHS advises families to return any renewal paperwork they receive from the department even if they believe they are no longer eligible for Medicaid. Some members of a household can obtain health care coverage even when others are not eligible. For example, a child may be eligible for MiChild, even if their parent is not eligible for other Medicaid programs. Or some Michiganders may have income that is over the income limit for one program and will still be able to obtain health care benefits through another program.
Starting in June this year, Medicaid and Healthy Michigan Plan beneficiaries were required to renew their coverage, as was the case before the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency, to comply with federal legislation.
Renewals for traditional Medicaid and the Healthy Michigan Plan are staggered to take place monthly starting in June 2023 and running through May 2024. MDHHS will send monthly renewal notices three months before a beneficiary’s renewal date.
More than 3 million Michiganders, including 1 million Healthy Michigan enrollees, benefitted from keeping their Medicaid coverage without redeterminations on eligibility during the COVID-19 pandemic.
During the federal COVID-19 Public Health Emergency, Congress enacted the Families First Coronavirus Response Act that required state Medicaid agencies to continue health care coverage for all medical assistance programs, even if someone’s eligibility changed. Michigan’s Medicaid caseload grew by more than 700,000 people during the public health emergency. This requirement was ended by the federal Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023 signed Dec. 29, 2022.
MDHHS will assess a household’s eligibility for all Medicaid programs – not just for the programs in which an individual is currently enrolled, and also for each family member in the household.
MDHHS advises all Medicaid enrollees to check their renewal month at Michigan.gov/MIBridges.
Michiganders who no longer qualify for Medicaid will receive additional information about other affordable health coverage options available, including on HealthCare.gov. Affected Michiganders will be able to shop for and enroll in comprehensive health insurance as they transition away from Medicaid, and many Michiganders can purchase a plan for less than $10 per month.
What Michigan Medicaid beneficiaries need to do to prepare:
The Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) is working with MDHHS to help impacted Michiganders get affordable, comprehensive health insurance if they are determined to be no longer eligible for Medicaid. DIFS can answer questions about purchasing a health insurance plan. Call DIFS at 877-999-6442, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. or visit Michigan.gov/StayCovered to learn more.
To ensure beneficiaries are aware of upcoming federal redetermination requirements and help them keep their coverage if eligible, MDHHS has launched a multimedia advertising campaign. This includes radio, audio streaming, outdoor, mobile and social media ads, including minority media outlets and stakeholder communications. The department is also working with other state government departments in its efforts to get the word out to beneficiaries.
More information about the how benefits connected to the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency are changing can be found at Michigan.gov/
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 26, 2023
CONTACT: Chelsea Wuth, 517-241-2112, [email protected]
MDHHS reports presumptive positive case of influenza A H3 (swine flu) variant detected in Lapeer County resident
LANSING, Mich. — The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and Lapeer and Oakland County health departments have identified a presumptive positive human case of influenza A H3 variant (swine flu) in a Lapeer County resident who was an exhibitor at the Oakland County Fair. The fair took place July 7-16 at the Springfield Oaks County Park in Davisburg. A respiratory specimen that tested presumptive positive for swine flu will be sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for confirmatory testing.
Oakland County Health Division has been reaching out to swine exhibitors and their families who visited the swine barns at the Oakland County Fair to identify any additional illnesses in those who may have been exposed to influenza from infected pigs. Oakland County Health Division has already alerted providers in their jurisdiction to watch for patients presenting with respiratory symptoms who report exposure to swine or who visited the fair.
“Visitors of the Oakland County Fair should monitor for flu-like symptoms: fever, respiratory symptoms like cough and runny nose, and body aches, nausea, vomiting or diarrhea,” said Dr. Natasha Bagdasarian, MDHHS chief medical executive. “If you believe you may have the flu, contact your health care provider and stay home until you have recovered.”
Below are some steps you can take to protect yourself and prevent the spread of any illness:
Pigs may be infected with swine influenza viruses that are different from human flu viruses. Swine flu viruses spread among pigs and – while rare – they can spread from pigs to people too. Spread of swine flu viruses from a pig to a person is thought to happen in the same way that human flu viruses spread; mainly through droplets when infected pigs cough and sneeze.
Symptoms of variant influenza infection in people are similar to those of seasonal flu viruses and can include fever and respiratory symptoms, such as cough and runny nose, and possibly other symptoms, such as body aches, nausea, vomiting or diarrhea. Infections with influenza viruses (including variant viruses like influenza A H3) can sometimes cause severe disease, even in healthy people.
Severe illness can include complications, such as pneumonia, which may require hospitalization, and sometimes causes death. People who are at high risk of developing complications if they get variant influenza infection include children younger than 5 years of age, people 65 years of age and older, pregnant women and people with certain long-term health conditions, such as asthma, diabetes, heart disease, weakened immune systems and neurological or neurodevelopmental conditions.
The time period it takes from exposure to illness for variant influenza is similar to that of seasonal influenza, which can be up to 10 days, but is most commonly three days. Currently, there is no vaccine for influenza A H3 and the seasonal flu vaccine will not protect against Influenza A H3; however, prescription antiviral drugs, such as oseltamivir and zanamivir, are effective in treating influenza A H3 virus infections. Early treatment works best and may be especially important for people with a high-risk condition.
For more information, visit CDC.gov/SwineFlu
Applications are due by Tuesday, Aug. 8. The listed job titles for these temporary positions include:
Questions? Call Jennifer Schafer or Brandi Holden at 517-284-WILD (9453) or email DNR-Wildlife-HR-and-