FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 21, 2021
Governor Whitmer Announces Initiative for Nation-Leading Wireless EV Charging Infrastructure in Michigan
Wireless charging advances Governor Whitmer’s goals for EV adoption and environmental sustainability in Michigan
PONTIAC, Mich. – While participating in the opening ceremony at Motor Bella today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced a new initiative to develop the nation’s first wireless charging infrastructure on a public road in the U.S. right here in Michigan. The development of a wireless dynamic charging roadway in Michigan is a step forward in addressing range anxiety and will accelerate the transition to all-electric transit fleets in Michigan, and beyond.
“Michigan was home to the first mile of paved road, and now we’re paving the way for the roads of tomorrow with innovative infrastructure the will support the economy and the environment, helping us achieve our goal of carbon neutrality by 2050,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “This project reinforces my commitment to accelerating the deployment of electric vehicle infrastructure in Michigan and will create new opportunities for businesses and high-tech jobs amidst the transition to electric vehicles.”
The Inductive Vehicle Charging Pilot is a partnership between the Michigan Department of Transportation and the Office of Future Mobility and Electrification that will deploy an electrified roadway system that allows electric buses, shuttles and vehicles to charge while driving, enabling electric vehicles to operate continuously without stopping to charge. Electrified roadways have the potential to accelerate adoption of electric vehicles by consumers and fleet operations alike by enabling continuous vehicle operations and turning public streets into safe and sustainable shared energy platforms. As the first in the nation to deploy this forward-looking infrastructure, Michigan
MDOT will release a Request for Proposal on Tuesday, September 28, 2021 to design, fund, evaluate, iterate, test and implement the Inductive Vehicle Charging Pilot along a one-mile stretch of state-operated roadway in Wayne, Oakland or Macomb counties. This partner will work closely with MODT, the Office of Future Mobility and Electrification, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, and Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy on this project. The RFP (Requisition 3524) will be posted to eProposal; which can be accessed through MILogin at MILogin for Third Party or at the following link starting on September 28.
“At MDOT, we know the future of mobility involves connectivity, and this initiative dovetails nicely with our other successes linking vehicles and infrastructure through technology,” said MDOT Director Paul C. Ajegba. “This is a model we will build on across the state to further promote the governor’s broad and ambitious vision.”
To date, MDOT has activated the largest vehicle-to-infrastructure technology deployment – nearly 600 miles – in the United States, including a first-of-its-kind connected and autonomous vehicle (CAV) corridor. Michigan is also home to the most diverse collection of automated vehicle and drone testing environments in the world, more mobility-related patents than any other state, and more engineers per capita than anywhere else in the world.
Today’s news builds on announcements by the administration in the past month, including the first round of Michigan Mobility Funding Platform funding grants to accelerate mobility and EV investments in the state, a robot delivery program to address last-mile delivery challenges in Detroit’s Corktown neighborhood; Detroit Smart Parking Lab, a new public/private sector collaboration launching the nation’s first-of-its-kind, real-world test site for parking solutions, also in Corktown; and a MOU between Michigan and Ontario on cross-border activities to spur technology innovations and transportation solutions that enhance crossings by land, air, and water.
“We’re in the midst of the most significant shift in the automotive industry since the Model T rolled off the assembly line more than a century ago, and Michigan is once setting the course manufacturing the vehicles of the future and deploying charging solutions that make EV adoption more widely available” said Trevor Pawl, Chief Mobility Officer with the Office of Future Mobility and Electrification. “This electrified roadway has the potential to accelerate autonomous vehicles at scale and turn our streets into safe, sustainable, accessible and shared transportation platforms.”
Learn more about how Michigan is leading in transportation mobility and electrification visit www.michiganbusiness.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 20, 2021
Gov. Whitmer Secures Grants to Empower Women
Fostering Access Rights and Equity Grant will help women workers understand and exercise their rights and benefits in the workplace
LANSING, Mich. – Governor Whitmer today announced that the U.S. Department of Labor Women’s Bureau awarded the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO) $350,000 in
“Women have been disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, and it is crucial that we step up to empower women at the workplace,” said Governor Whitmer. “I am grateful to Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh and the Biden Administration for their work in supporting women’s economic recovery by increasing access to resources. This FARE grant will help our community organizations co
The Michigan Women’s Commission, housed within LEO, will administer the grant and work with community-based organizations in southeast Michigan to connect women to eligible benefits under the American Rescue Plan, prioritizing available child care subsidies and eligibility for additional benefits.
“With continued investments in programs and services that remove barriers that prevent women from full and continuous participation in the workforce, we will ensure Michigan women are fully accessing these opportunities,” said Susan Corbin, LEO director. “The Michigan Women’s Commission is uniquely positioned to help connect women to these resources, paving a path for more Michigan women, children and families to succeed.
The Michigan Women’s Commission will receive funding in the form of a grant to help women workers understand and exercise their rights and benefits in the workplace by doing the following:
“As our nation continues its recovery, we must include targeted programming for women workers who are affected by the coronavirus pandemic disproportionately,” said U.S. Deputy Secretary of Labor Julie A. Su. “Fostering Access, Rights and Equity grants fund vital partnerships to help inform women about their rights and benefits and ensure that women workers share in the prosperity of the nation’s economic recovery.”
“The Women’s Bureau is determined to overcome the systemic discrimination, racism and gender inequality that women have historically faced,” said Women’s Bureau Director Wendy Chun-Hoon. “The grants we’ve awarded today support organizations working on behalf of underserved and marginalized low-income women to ensure their rights to employment are protected and that they have access to all of the benefits available to them.”
Two National Digital Government Organizations Award Oakland County’s Digital Response To Pandemic
Pontiac, Michigan – Two national awards are shining a spotlight on Oakland County’s digital response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The county received the Granicus Digital Government Award for its overall Digital Coronavirus Response and a Project Experience Award from the Center for Digital Government for its #OaklandTogether COVID-19 Tribute.
“These awards highlight the talent and dedication of the county’s communications, information technology, and public health teams throughout the pandemic,” County Executive Dave Coulter said. “When we learned about our first COVID-19 case, my administration made a commitment to be transparent and keep the public informed. Digital communications played a key role in that effort.”
Oakland County’s Digital Coronavirus Response for which it won the Granicus Digital Government Award included:
- A COVID-19 website and dashboards
- Press conferences and Board of Commissioners meetings by virtually accessible videos with online citizen feedback
- Streamlined CARES Act grant process, increasing transparency through GIS-powered dashboards
- Redesigning Workforce Development website to help connect job seekers and businesses with vital information while reducing number of service calls
- Launching a separate Vaccine hub with dashboard, FAQs, newsletters, and the ‘Save Your Spot’ online form. The hub has had more than 2.2 million pageviews, with 767,000 users since it launched in January 2021.
- The ‘Save Your Spot’ online form for vaccine appointment registrations which at its height had 600,000 names on the list
- A COVID-19 vaccination weekly newsletter, including a video message, to nearly 115,000 email and text subscribers
- The utilization of crowdsourcing for a COVID-19 safety video, art public service announcements competition, and the Oakland Together COVID-19 Tribute Gratitude and Remembrance Story maps
- The COVID-19 Tribute Month initiatives to honor and remember everything we’ve experienced together this past year implemented through a website, crowdsourced Remembrance and Gratitude Maps, a Tribute Walk, community discussion, and videos.
“Oakland County responded to COVID-19 with a host of digital services and tools,” Granicus said. “In addition to organizing virtual press conferences and board meetings, it developed a dedicated COVID-19 website, redesigned its workforce development website to connect job seekers to employers, and created a digital vaccine hub with a ‘save your spot’ online form that has generated over 2 million page views since its launch.”
The Center for Digital Government’s Project Experience Award highlights Oakland County’s collaborative effort to produce the #OaklandTogether COVID-19 Tribute. Oakland County lead the project and coordinated across county departments, including the County Executive Office, Health Division, Information Technology, and Oakland County Parks and Recreation, as well as a vendor, Bluewater Technologies. Tribute events included:
- A virtual discussion and COVID-19 update by County Executive Coulter and Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist on the inequities people of color faced when confronting the virus. This video had more than 1,700 views.
- A video of county officials remembering one year of living with COVID-19 while reflecting on the pandemic and the tragedies, suffering, and heroism many experienced since March 10, 2020. The video received more than 2,700 views.
- Remembrance and Gratitude Story Maps which were crowdsourced story maps for stories and photos of those we have lost to COVID-19 on the Remembrance Map as well as appreciation for acts of kindness for frontline workers and support for local businesses on the Gratitude Map.
- The #OaklandTogether COVID-19 Tribute Walk, a half-mile immersive light display that honored the memories of those lost to COVID-19 and gave thanks to those who risk their health and safety the past year. More than 3,000 people attended in person, and another 5,243 viewed the livestream. After expenses were covered, $3,500 was donated to CARE House, a Pontiac-based agency that provides services for children who are the victims of child abuse and neglect.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 20, 2021
Contact: Kathleen Achtenberg, achtenbergk@
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer Announces Michigan projects receive $65,000 to document two significant Civil Rights sites in Detroit
LANSING, Mich. – Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation today announced two projects in Michigan focused on Civil Rights history have been awarded $65,000 in federal Underrepresented Community Grant Program fundin
“These grants will shine a light on places and experiences vital to the Civil Rights movement and help us further expand our understanding of the Civil Rights movement in Michigan,” said Gov. Whitmer. “The nomination of Vaughn’s Bookstore to the National Register will recognize a significant location that served as a center for Black culture and played a meaningful role in the Civil Rights movement in the city of Detroit.”
The SHPO grant was one of two projects in Michigan to receive funding from the National Park Service’s Underrepresented Community Grant Program. A separate $50,000 grant was also awarded to the city of Detroit to develop a historic context for the city’s Latinx community. This historic context document will provide a broad historical overview on the settlement and development patterns of Latinx communities in Detroit between 1880 and 1980.
The SHPO will utilize its grant to document and nominate Vaughn’s Bookstore in Detroit to the National Register of Historic Places. Established on Dexter Avenue in the early 1960s by Edward Vaughn, Vaughn’s Bookstore was Detroit’s first Black-owned bookstore. Born in Alabama in 1934, Edward Vaughn graduated from Fisk University in 1955 and served in the U.S. Army before settling in Detroit.
As a Black-owned enterprise, Vaughn’s Bookstore specialized in African American history, literature, and other materials, which were virtually impossible to find in traditional White bookstores. It became a center of black intellectual life in the city, not just for the content it offered for sale, but as a venue for people to gather and learn. During the 1960s, when the struggle for African Americans equality became more visible and mainstream, the bookstore became a nexus at the height of the black liberation and nationalism movement.
“As the first Black-owned bookstore in Detroit and a hub of African American journalism and conversation, Vaughn’s Bookstore played a key role in the tumultuous Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s,” said Michigan’s State Historic Preservation Officer Mark A. Rodman. “An important priority of the National Register program is to document those sites associated with significant events that have contributed to broad patterns of our history. We look forward to nominating the property to the National Register as the first step toward its reuse.”
The building was damaged after the Detroit Rebellion of 1967, and later saw other uses before it was abandoned. Vaughn remained active in the Civil Rights Movement, serving as chair of the Housing and Redevelopment Committee of the Citywide Citizens Action Committee and as the head of the Black Star Co-op. He later served several terms in the Michigan State House of Representatives.
The building’s known Civil Rights significance has already saved it from destruction. When the bookstore was identified several years ago for its cultural role in the neighborhood, representatives from the Detroit Land Bank Authority recognized it as a site on their list of properties to be demolished. They immediately removed it from the demolition list. Knowing its significance, the city of Detroit has been trying to save it and incorporate its reuse in its neighborhood planning efforts. National Register documentation will become the first step in that process.
The National Register is the official federal list of districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects significant in American history, architecture, archaeology, engineering, and culture. National Register properties have significance in the history of their community, state, or the nation. Once listed, any federal project must take into account the potential for impacts on sites listed in the National Register, just as they must consider impacts to the natural environment.
The listing is honorary and is used to recognize and celebrate how the past plays a role in the future. Once listed, the bookstore will join nearly 2,000 other National Register-designated places in Michigan, including several other sites relating to Civil Rights history in Detroit.
“Through these grants to our state, Tribal, and certified local government partners, the National Register will continue to expand to help tell our nation’s diverse history,” said NPS Deputy Director Shawn Benge. The Underrepresented Community Grant Program of the National Park Service focuses specifically on work toward diversifying the nominations submitted to the National Register of Historic Places.
This funding is the latest in a series of competitive National Park Service grants awarded to the Michigan SHPO and partners to better document and tell Civil Rights stories across the state. The award directly builds on a 2016 grant which documented thirty 20th Century civil rights sites in Detroit, developed National Register of Historic Places nominations for five initial sites, and created a bike tour encompassing 15 of the sites, including the Vaughn’s Bookstore, which launched in late 2020 and can be found online at www.miplace.org/biketour. This 2021 award builds on these prior efforts and the momentum to properly document Michigan’s complete range of Civil Rights sites and consider their significance.
Focused on the historic preservation of culturally or archaeologically significant sites throughout the state, Michigan’s State Historic Preservation Office’s main function is to provide technical assistance to local communities and property owners in their efforts to identify, evaluate, designate, interpret and protect Michigan’s historic above- and below-ground resources. SHPO also administers an incentives program that includes federal tax credits and pass-through grants available to certified local governments.
To learn more about the State Historic Preservation Office, visit https://www.miplace.org/
About Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation is the state’s marketing arm and lead advocate for business development, job awareness and community development with the focus on growing Michigan’s economy. For more information on the MEDC and our initiatives, visit www.MichiganBusiness.org
The National Register Nomination for Vaughn’s Bookstore is supported through the Underrepresented Communities grant program as administered by the National Park Service, Department of Interior.
This material was produced with assistance from the Underrepresented Communities, administered by the National Park Service, Department of the Interior. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Department of the Interior.
The views and conclusions contained in this document are those of the authors and should not be interpreted as representing the opinions or policies of the U.S. Government. Mention of trade names or commercial products does not constitute their endorsement by the U.S. Government.
This program receives Federal financial assistance for identification and protection of historic properties. Under Title VI of the Civil Rights Acts of 1964, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, as amended, the U.S. Department of the Interior prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, disability, or age in its federally assisted programs. Michigan law prohibits discrimination on the basis of religion, race, color, national origin, age, sex, marital status, or disability. If you believe you have been discriminated against in any program, activity, or facility as described above, or if you desire further information, please write to:
Chief, Office of Equal Opportunity Programs
United States Department of the Interior
National Park Service
1849 C Street, NW, MS-2740
Washington, DC 20240
Health Division Awarded National Accreditation
County’s Public Health Team Meets All Standards for Accreditation
Pontiac, Michigan – Oakland County Health Division’s robust relationships with community partners, commitment to improvement and growth as an organization, and skill in promoting the value of public health is getting national recognition. The Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) cited these as the Health Division’s top strengths when it awarded the Health Division its coveted national accreditation today.
During the PHAB accreditation process, partners described Oakland County Health Division as reliable and innovative and always ready to meet the changing needs of the community.
“I’m so proud of our public health team,” County Executive Dave Coulter said. “Meeting the high standards of PHAB’s national accreditation in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic reassures our residents, partners, and local officials that our public health services are top notch and responsive to the needs of our community.”
Oakland County Health Division met all the standards for accreditation. The Health Division received perfect scores in health equity, data collection and use, environmental health, lab services, emergency preparedness, access to care, and workforce. It also had high scores in quality improvement/performance management and planning.
“Going through the national accreditation process has helped our health department become better connected to the community and our partners, more knowledgeable about our community’s needs, more focused on quality improvement, and more dedicated to health equity and addressing the root causes of poor health,” Oakland County Director of Health & Human Services Leigh-Anne Stafford said.
The national accreditation program, which receives support from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, sets standards against which the nation’s governmental public health departments can assess and continuously improve the quality of their programs and services. More than 80 percent of the U.S. population now reap the benefits of being served by a health department that has undergone PHAB’s rigorous, multi-faceted, peer review process to ensure it meets a set of quality standards and measures.
“The value of becoming nationally accredited through PHAB extends far beyond the interior walls of the health department,” said PHAB President and CEO Paul Kuehnert, DNP, RN, FAAN. “People living and working in communities served by these health departments can be assured that their health department is strong and has the capacity to protect and promote their health. Just going through the accreditation process itself helps health departments pinpoint the areas that are critical to improving the work they do for their communities.”
To learn more about Oakland County Health Division programs and services, click on the Health Division’s website at oakgov.com/health or by contacting Nurse on Call at 800-848-5533 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For up-to-date public health information, follow @publichealthOC on Facebook and Twitter.
About the Public Health Accreditation Board
The Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) was created to serve as the national public health accrediting body and is jointly funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The development of national public health department accreditation has involved, and is supported by, public health leaders and practitioners from the national, state, local, Tribal, and territorial levels. For more information, contact PHAB Communications Manager Janalle Goosby at email@example.com. Learn more about PHAB and accreditation at www.phaboard.org, and by signing up for the PHAB e-newsletter.
Attorney General Nessel Provides Update on Fight Against Robocalls
LANSING – Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel, who has made fighting robocalls a top priority, released an update on telecom companies’ progress in implementing the Anti-Robocall Principles she signed onto in 2019.
Since September 2019, companies that agreed to these principles have identified more than 52 billion spam or spoofed numbers calls, authenticated the caller ID numbers of hundreds of billions of calls, and blocked more than 32.5 billion spam, spoofed, or illegal calls. There is more work to do, however. Already this year, 391,453 Americans have filed reports with the FTC about robocalls, reporting totals of at least $356 million in losses. These numbers underscore the need to continue to fight back against the scourge of robocalls.
“Cracking down on robocalls has remained a priority since the start of my tenure,” Nessel said. “While we’re making progress, I recognize there is much more work to be done by this office and my colleagues across the country to shut down these operations. We will continue to protect Michigan consumers and pursue illegal robocalls to the furthest extent of the law.”
Early last year, Nessel led a bipartisan coalition of 52 attorneys general in calling on US Telecom and its Industry Traceback Group to continue its collaboration with state attorneys general by bolstering technological capabilities to improve enforcement against illegal robocallers.
In addition, Nessel reached a settlement with a California-based Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) voice service provider, MODOK LLC, to exit the VoIP telecom industry and begin winding down its operations.
The agreement marked the first time a state attorney general was able to permanently shut down a VoIP service provider and bar its ownership from working in the industry.
The Department’s developments in this area also led to criminal charges against a pair of political operatives who had orchestrated a series of robocalls aimed at suppressing the vote in the November general election.
The Anti-Robocall Principles required companies to:
Enforcement actions have increased as a result of these efforts by the telecom companies that signed onto the Principles. Since the Principles were established:
Industry Traceback investigations and governmental enforcement actions will continue. Help bolster investigations in Michigan by reporting your robocalls online.
You can learn more about Nessel’s enforcement efforts and robocall initiatives on the Department’s website.