Young People’s Concert: Link Up: The Orchestra Rocks; May 8, 2020
Symphonie Fantastique: May 9, 2020
A letter will be mailed regarding options for both Season and single ticket patrons.
DIFS’ Call Center Working Remotely to Assist Consumers with Insurance And Financial Services Questions And Complaints
LANSING, MICH. The Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) announced that its call center continues regular operations and remains prepared to assist Michigan consumers with their insurance and financial services concerns, especially those individuals impacted by coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
The call center consists of representatives that can assist with insurance, banking, credit union, mortgage and other consumer financial concerns. The Office of Consumer Services also has analysts available to review complaints against insurance or financial service entities. DIFS encourages consumers to first attempt to resolve disputes directly with their insurance and/or financial service provider. If a resolution cannot be reached, DIFS Office of Consumer Services can help try to resolve your dispute. The live call center can be reached by calling toll-free at 877-999-6442, and is available Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m.
“Michigan consumers will not see a change in the way they obtain help from DIFS as we work remotely,” added Fox. “DIFS live call center team will continue to answer phones and address their needs.”
DIFS stands ready to assist with:
For more information visit: www.michigan.gov/difs, call toll free at 877-999-6442 or email DIFSComplaints@michigan.gov.
LANSING, Mich. –The Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s Pure Michigan Business Connect program has launched a new grant program providing a total of $1 million in grants to Michigan’s small manufacturers looking to retool and produce critical health and human service supplies in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.
The PMBC COVID-19 Emergency Access and Retooling Grants program will award grants of $10,000 to $150,000 to companies that can quickly and effectively manufacture critical health and human service supplies. Michigan small businesses (per SBA size standards) and established nonprofits are eligible to apply. Businesses can use the funds to support the purchase of equipment necessary to manufacture critical supplies, logistics and shipping costs of procuring necessary equipment, technology upgrades and other costs related to operationalizing new product lines.
To qualify, companies must submit an application at https://pmbc.connect.space/covid19/forms. Eligible applications will be reviewed based on ability to execute project; need for financial assistance; timeliness; product need in market; economic impact. Applications will be reviewed on an ongoing basis until the total $1 million in grant funds are expended. To learn more about the program, visit here: https://www.michiganbusiness.org/pmbc-retooling-grants/.
While the program does not guarantee sales channels, the Pure Michigan Business Connect team will assist grantees by connecting them with demand identified through the COVID-19 Virtual Procurement and Donation Assistance portal. The portal, an effort of PMBC in collaboration with the State Emergency Operation Center, is a free, virtual procurement and donation platform that provides health and human service providers direct access to businesses within the state providing and donating supplies including personal protection equipment, food, medical devices, paper products, cleaning equipment and more.
The platform is also offering a place for companies with manufacturing capabilities for personal protection equipment to indicate which items (i.e. masks, gowns, ventilators) they are able to produce, along with quantity and timing detail. To learn more, visit here: https://www.michiganbusiness.org/virtual-procurement/.
Last week, the MEDC announced applications are now being accepted for the Michigan Small Business Relief Program, authorized by the Michigan Strategic Fund on March 19, to provide up to $20 million in grants and loans to provide economic assistance to Michigan’s small businesses that have been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 virus. The funds are being administered by 15 local and nonprofit economic development organizations (EDOs) around Michigan, covering all 83 counties in the state. Visit https://www.michiganbusiness.org/msbrp for more information on how to apply.
In addition, michiganbusiness.org/covid19 also features other resources for businesses across Michigan to assist them in recovering from economic losses as a result of the COVID-19 virus. This includes U.S. Small Business Administration emergency loans, support services offered through the SBDC and more. The MEDC has also developed a FAQ for Michigan businesses and communities at michiganbusiness.org/covid19-faq.
Over 2,000 Michigan Companies Hiring Now
Michigan companies need to fill thousands of critical, immediate vacancies to support work during the COVID-19 pandemic, including those in logistics, healthcare, manufacturing and agribusiness industries. The State’s employment search engine – Pure Michigan Talent Connect – provides job seekers and employers with an online portal at MiTalent.org to post, search and connect to these job openings.
Thousands of new jobs are being posted to MiTalent.org each day. Employers looking to hire during the COVID-19 pandemic should use the COVID-19 On-Demand Hiring Intake Form to ensure their postings appear in the search results.
MICHIGAN LAUNCHES COVID-19 VOLUNTEER WEBSITE
As Michigan’s healthcare system faces tremendous strains due to the spread of COVID-19, Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) are calling on medical professionals and everyday Michiganders to volunteer their talents and time to save lives.
Governor Whitmer and MDHHS launched a new volunteer website, www.michigan.gov/fightcovid19, where trained medical professionals can register to serve their fellow Michiganders by assisting hospitals in fighting COVID-19. Other state residents also can use the site to find out how they can help in their local communities, give blood, donate money or needed medical supplies, or assist public health officials in tracking infections.
Governor Whitmer has signed a “Stay Home, Stay Safe” Executive Order, directing all non-critical businesses to temporarily close, all Michiganders to stay home or six feet away from others during COVID-19 crisis. The order is effective at 12:01 am on March 24, 2020 until April 13, 2020 at 11:59 pm. The complete Executive Order is at the end of this information page.
If you have questions related to the governor’s order or the resources below, contact:
Eligible employees are strongly encouraged to apply for unemployment benefits online at Michigan.gov/UIA or by calling 866-500-0017. A factsheet on how to apply for benefits can also be found online.
Governor Whitmer’s Executive Order 2020-10 expands unemployment benefits to:
The governor’s order also extends access to benefits for unemployed workers:
Visit the Unemployment Insurance Agency website for:
Unemployment Resources for Employees
Employee Frequently Asked Questions
The State is also seeking solutions for self-employed workers and independent contractors who traditionally do not have access to unemployment insurance. The governor has requested that President Trump issue a Major Disaster Declaration so that Individual Assistance and Disaster Unemployment Assistance through FEMA may be made available to additional Michiganders affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Employers are encouraged to implement the State’s Work Share program that permits employers who may be facing maintain business operations during declines in regular activity instead of laying off workers. The program allows employers to keep their employees working with reduced hours, while employees collect partial unemployment benefits to make up a portion of the lost wages. More information about Work Share is available online at www.michigan.gov/WorkShare.
Unemployment Resources for Employers
Employer Frequently Asked Questions
Unpaid Leave vs. Termination
Due to the uncertainty regarding potential congressional action regarding whether furloughed workers will be able to access federal resources, employers are urged to place employees on temporary leave as opposed to termination. View the State’s guidance for employers contemplating potential layoffs.
Capital Resources for Employers
Business Call Centers
The MEDC’s call center stands ready to support businesses with questions about assistance available to small business through existing state programs by calling 888.522.0103. The Michigan Small Business Development Center can also provide resources at https://sbdcmichigan.org/small-business-covid19/.
Small Business Association Loans
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) approved the governor’s request for a statewide Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) declaration, opening the opportunity to small businesses to access low-interest loans from the SBA.
Michigan small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, and nonprofits that have suffered substantial economic losses as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak can now apply for low-interest loans as part of $1 billion in funding. The application for disaster loan assistance is available at: disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/.
Michigan Small Business Relief Program The Michigan Strategic Fund approved the Michigan Small Business Relief Program which authorizes the MEDC provide up to $20 million in support for small businesses. The funding is divided between $10 million in small business grants and $10 million in small business loans to support businesses facing drastic reductions in cash flow and the continued support of their workforce. The $10 million in grant funding will be provided to local or nonprofit economic development organizations throughout the state to provide grants up to $10,000 each to support certain small businesses that have realized a significant financial hardship as a result of the COVID-19 virus. For more information visit, michiganbusiness.org/covid19
Tax Assistance for Small Businesses The Michigan Treasury Department is providing small businesses that have experienced disrupted operations due to the COVID-19 additional time to make their sales, use and withholding tax monthly payment. Small businesses scheduled to make these payments on March 20 can postpone filing and payment requirements until April 20. Penalties and interest penalties will be waived for 30 days. Learn more about penalties and interest online or by calling the Treasury Business Tax Call Center at 517-636-6925.
Here is the State of Michigan HOTLINE for coronavirus calls: 888-535-6136
With the closure of all K-12 schools around the state a map to locate meals for children can be found at this link:
On 3/16, Governor Whitmer ordered the closing of all restaurants, bars, theaters, casinos and other public spaces (restaurant take-out/delivery permitted). For area establishments offering takeout/delivery and more, see the following links:
Other Important Links:
Information about the COVID-19/Coronavirus is changing rapidly. For the latest information, visit:
Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus.
To slow the spread of COVID-19 in Michigan, following are some of the mitigation strategies being recommended:
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) approved the governor’s request for a statewide Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) declaration, opening the opportunity to small businesses to access low-interest loans from the SBA. The application for disaster loan assistance is available at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/. For businesses looking for more information on how to apply for an SBA EIDL loan or whether it is something they should consider, visit michiganbusiness.org/covid19.
Mid Michigan Waste Authority Services Update:
Mid Michigan Waste Authority is making some changes to its residential curbside collection services due to the impact of COVID-19 and related emergency declarations. They’re suspending collection of bulk items effective April first. That includes large items like couches, or anything that can’t be contained in a bag or can and weighs more than 50 pounds. Also, yard waste collection, which was scheduled to start on April first, has been postponed.
Acting under the Michigan Constitution of 1963 and Michigan law, I order the following: