October 15, 2020
MIOSHA Issues Emergency Rules On Workplace COVID Protocols
Safety requirements employers must follow to help curb the spread of COVID-19 in workplaces were clarified on Wednesday through emergency rules issued by Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration covering cleaning protocols, training requirements and more.
Under the rules (MOAHR 2020-213 ) – similar to what was in place through executive order – businesses that resume in-person work must have a written COVID-19 preparedness and response plan and provide thorough training to their employees that covers workplace infection-control practices, the proper use of personal protection equipment, steps workers must take to notify the business or operation of any symptoms of COVID-19 or a suspected or confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19, and how to report unsafe working conditions.
"Small businesses owners are dedicated to providing safe workplaces. Consistent, practical, and clear rules are important to achieving that goal," said Brian Calley, president of the Small Business Association of Michigan, in the statement the governor's office distributed. "We welcome the initiation of the departmental rule-making process to establish predicable and well defined expectations."
Since March 2020, employers have reported 30 worker deaths from COVID-19 in Michigan and 127 in-patient hospitalizations potentially linked to workplace exposure, the state said. MIOSHA has received more than 3,800 complaints from employees alleging uncontrolled COVID-19 hazards in the workplace and 263 referrals from local government, including local health departments, indicating that businesses were not taking all the necessary measures to protect their employees from infection.
The rules require employers to create policies prohibiting in-person work for those who can feasibly work remotely, require self-screening protocols for employees, and direct employees to report any signs or symptoms of COVID-19 while prohibiting those workers from reporting to work or sending them away from the workplace. They also require notification of any positive cases to those who were in close contact with the positive individual.
"As we reengage our economy, the governor's actions reiterate the importance to keep workplaces safe for employees and protect customers from COVID-19 transmission," said COVID-19 Workplace Safety Director Sean Egan. "These rules will formalize the workplace safety guidelines previously in place, and are necessary to save lives. We will continue to educate workers and employers on requirements for businesses to get open and stay open."
The state has resources online for businesses, including sample preparedness plans and a reopening checklist. Additionally, a new ambassador program will send safety and health experts to businesses for education and support.
October 14, 2020
Michigan Golf Course Association, the Small Business Association of Michigan and several other organizations joined together and our collective voice was heard in the legislature to take up common sense legislation to protect Michigan's businesses. Early in September this letter was sent to the House Judiciary Committee.
Yesterday, after hours of negotiations a legislative package consisting of coronavirus liability protections for businesses passed the Michigan Legislature and moves to the Governor’s desk for a signature. This legislation will help prevent potential COVID-19 lawsuits for employers as well as provide employee protections for employer retaliation.
The following is a summary of the package (HB 6030-6032, 6101) .
HB 6030 A Business/Person who acts in compliance with all federal, state, and local statutes, rules, regulations, executive orders, and agency orders related to COVID-19 that had not been denied legal effect at the time of the conduct or risk that allegedly caused harm is immune from liability for a COVID-19 Claim. An isolated deviation from strict compliance with such statutes, rules, regulations, executive orders, and agency orders unrelated to the plaintiff’s injuries does not deny a business/person the immunity. This applies retroactively to any claim or cause of action after March 1, 2020.
HB 6031 Amends Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Act – An employer is not liable for an employee’s exposure to COVID-19 if the employer was operating in compliance with all federal, state, and local statutes, rules, and regulations, executive orders, and agency orders related to COVID-19 that had not been denied legal effect at the time of exposure.
HB 6032 An employer shall not discharge, discipline, or otherwise retaliate against an employee who does the following:
- Opposes a violation of this act
- Reports health violations related to COVID-19
- Complies with the following, including where an employee who displays the principal symptoms of COVID-19 does not report to work and later tests negative for COVID-19.
- This does not apply to an employee who after displaying the principal symptoms of COVID-19, fails to make reasonable efforts to schedule a COVID-19 test within 3 days after receiving a request from their employer to get tested for COVID-19
Sec 5. An employee who tests positive for COVID-19 or displays the principal symptoms of COVID-19 shall not report to work until all of the following are met:
- If the employee has a fever, 24 hours have passed since the fever has stopped without medication.
- 10 days have passed since either of the following, whichever is later:
- The date the employee’s symptoms first appeared.
- The date the employee received the test that yielded a positive COVID-19 test.
- The employee’s principal symptoms of COVID-19 have improved.
An employee who has close contact with an individual who tests positive for COVID-19 or with an individual who displays the principal symptoms of COVID-19 shall not report to work until 1 of the following is met:
- 14 days have passed since the employee last had close contact with the individual.
- The individual with whom the employee had close contact receives a medical determination that they did not have COVID-19.
- These provisions do not apply to employees of the following –
- Health care professional
- Worker at health care facility
- First responder
- Child protective service employee
- Worker in a child caring institution
- Worker at an adult foster care facility
- Worker at a correctional facility
This act is retroactive to March 1, 2020.
HB 6101 Amends Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Act to add terms and definitions pertaining to House Bill 6031.
September 25, 2020
Today Governor Whitmer issued 2020-183. Under the Safe Start Order, starting October 9, 2020,
Indoor and outdoor event gathering limits have been increased. Non-residential indoor gatherings and events now must limit attendance to 20 people per 1,000 square feet or 20 percent of fixed seating capacity, with a maximum of 500 people in Michigan’s largest venues. Instead of being limited to 100 people, non-residential outdoor gatherings and events now must limit attendance to 30 people per 1,000 square feet or 30 percent of fixed seating capacity, with a maximum of 1,000 people. Regions 6 and 8 are subject to the same rules covered in the revised MI Safe Start order, except non-residential indoor venues may allow up to 25 people per 1,000 square feet or 25 percent of fixed seating capacity, with a maximum of 500 people in the regions’ largest venues.
To read the full Executive Order 2020-183, click here.
August 31, 2020
Michigan Golf Course Association, the Small Business Association of Michigan and several other organizations have joined together to urge the legislature to take up common sense legislation to protect Michigan's businesses.
As Michigan’s businesses continue to reopen, the state must provide assurance that they will not be subject to frivolous lawsuits and excessive liability, particularly in fragile economic times. The proposed legislation will also make necessary changes to the MI Occupational Safety and Health Act (MIOSHA) and codify employment protections for workers.
The Michigan Legislature is taking this bill package up this week, so please act quickly and reach out to your State Legislators and the Governor to urge them to support HB 6030-6032!
August 5, 2020
Earlier this week, Michigan Golf Course Associatoin joined with fellow statewide tourism organizations to send a letter to Governor Whitmer. The ask? To utilize some of the Federal CARES Act Funding towards Pure Michigan.
The Pure MI campaign line item has been left out. However it can be funded with the Federal CARES Act. With less than $100 million left in current funding for Michigan, our letter urges Governor Whitmer to use some of this federal funding towards our very important Pure Michigan campaign.
Please feel free to use this letter (click here) as a template for your own to Governor Whitmer or your legislators.
Other states have successfully received this for their statewide tourism budgets and we are asking Governor Whitmer the same for Pure Michigan!
July 30, 2020
Yesterday, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-160 and Executive Order 2020-161, amending Michigan’s Safe Start Order and issuing revised workplace safeguards.
Under the Safe Start Order, starting July 31, 2020, statewide indoor gatherings will be limited to 10 people and bars will be closed for indoor service across the state, including in Regions 6 and 8.
Restaurants can remain open at 50% capacity following all social distancing requirements.
Executive Order 2020-160 limits statewide indoor gatherings to 10 people or less and, across most of the state, limits outdoor gatherings to 100. (The outdoor gathering limits will remain at 250 in Regions 6 and 8.)
Executive Order 2020-160 also orders that bars in every region, including those in regions 6 and 8, must close for indoor service if they earn more than 70% of their gross receipts from sales of alcoholic beverages.
Read Executive Order 2020-160
Read Executive Order 2020-161
Q: What are the guest limits for weddings, receptions, or other social events held at a restaurant/banquet hall?
A: These events are subject to the limitations of Executive Order 2020-160. Accordingly, if the event is outdoors and among people not part of the same household, it may not exceed 100 people if in regions 1,2,3,4,5, and 7; and 250 people if in regions 6 and 8. If the event is indoors and among people not part of the same household, it may not exceed 10 people. In all cases, people not part of the same household must maintain six feet of distance from one another during the event.
The separate capacity limits applicable to restaurants, food courts, cafes, coffeehouses, bars, taverns, brew pubs, breweries, microbreweries, distilleries, wineries, tasting rooms, special licensees, clubs, and like places do not allow for larger social gatherings or events to take place by reason of the fact that they are held at such venues. A central risk of a large social gathering or event is that the people who have congregated for that gathering or event will interact with one another over a long period of time. That same level of risk is not present among people who happen to be in the same establishment and are seated at different tables.
July 10, 2020
This morning Governor Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-147 mandating masks for individuals and businesses that are open to the public. As to individuals, this order takes effect immediately. As to businesses, this order will take effect at 12:01 am on Monday, July 13. Violations remain a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $500. The order makes clear, however, that no term of confinement can be issued for a violation.
From Executive Order 2020-147, Section 1 and 3 are below and how they apply to your golf operation.
This order reiterates that individuals are required to wear a face covering whenever they are in an indoor public space. It also requires the use of face coverings in crowded outdoor spaces. Most significantly, the order requires any business that is open to the public to refuse entry or service to people who refuse to wear a face covering. No shirts, no shoes, no mask—no service.
Acting under the Michigan Constitution of 1963 and Michigan law, I order the following:
1. Any individual who leaves their home or place of residence must wear a face covering over their nose and mouth:
a. When in any indoor public space;
b. When outdoors and unable to consistently maintain a distance of six feet or more from individuals who are not members of their household; and
c. When waiting for or riding on public transportation, while in a taxi or ridesharing vehicle, or when using a private car service as a means of hired transportation.
3. To protect workers, shoppers, and the community, no business that is open to the public may provide service to a customer or allow a customer to enter its premises, unless the customer is wearing a face covering as required by this order.
a. Businesses that are open to the public must post signs at entrance(s) instructing customers of their legal obligation to wear a face covering while inside. The Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity may, in its discretion, require such businesses to post signs developed and made available by the Department, or conforming to requirements established by the Department.
b. A department or agency that learns that a licensee is in violation of this section will consider whether the public health, safety or welfare requires summary, temporary suspension of the business’s license to operate (including but not limited to a liquor license) under section 92 of the Administrative Procedures Act of 1969, 1969 PA 306, as amended, MCL 24.292(2).
To read the full Executive Order, click here.