Updates from Jan. 6 MBA Newsletter

Update on federal vaccine mandate

The MBA has been keeping you updated on the “federal vaccine mandate” (Emergency Temporary Standard) that was announced by President Biden in early November. We reported throughout November and into December that the ETS had met a number of speedbumps in U.S. Circuit Courts, prompting the ETS to go on hold. If you’ll remember, the vaccine (or routine testing, for those who have that option) was scheduled to go into effect in early January. The official deadline is Jan. 10, with enforcement beginning Feb. 9. Employers should plan to be able to demonstrate that they are working towards full implementation after Jan. 10.

Our last report on this topic indicated that the 6th U.S. Circuit Court would issue a ruling on the matter, which would apply to the entire nation. On Dec. 17, that court ruled to uphold the ETS.

As expected, the case now resides with the U.S. Supreme Court, which will take up the issue tomorrow. At the core of the case is whether the ETS represents government overreach.

Here in Michigan, about 2.6 million employees could be subject to the vaccine (or routine testing) mandate, creating an undue burden on employers at a time when staffing shortages are already threatening businesses’ ability to operate efficiently. The MBA has joined the Listen to MI Business coalition, which includes 26 business organizations opposing the ETS. Many Michigan businesses are already preparing for the mandate, should it be upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Next week, will provide an update on the ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court.

…And More News on COVID-19…

Late in December, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) updated their guidance for individuals who test positive for COVID-19 or are exposed to someone who has tested positive. Summary for the new guidance:

If you test positive for COVID-19, isolate for five days. If you are asymptomatic or your symptoms are resolving (without fever for 24 hours), follow that by five days of wearing a mask when around others.

If you are exposed to someone who is COVID-19 positive:

  • Unvaccinated, or more than six months out from full vaccination?… CDC now recommends quarantine for five days, followed by strict mask use for an additional five days.
  • Fully vaccinated?… No quarantine is necessary, but wear a mask for 10 days after exposure.

Additionally, the agency recommends getting a test, if possible, prior to leaving quarantine.

We share this with our family of readers because, throughout the pandemic, the MBA has recommended that businesses look to the CDC for guidance. These new guidelines represent a significant break from the previous guidelines, in that it cuts the quarantine period in half.

Wondering what the hospitalization rate is here in Michigan? Check out Bridge Magazine’s online dashboard.

Wondering where to find a COVID-19 test near you? Check out this online search, offered by MDHHS.

That’s a Wrap On the Maps

Michigan’s redistricting commission has completed its work and approved three new maps:

US House

State Senate

State House

The maps will go into effect with the 2022 elections and will stay in effect for ten years. Generally speaking, the maps are expected to set up more competitive elections, particularly for those districts where incumbents will face one another in their next elections.

The new maps will spark a change in Michigan’s representation in Congress. The state will lose one seat in the U.S. House (from 14 to 13) due to population losses. Additionally, the redrawn district lines differ significantly from previous lines. Use this online tool to compare the new map vs. the old map, including an indication of how voters in these areas tend to lean. Congressman John Moolenaar has already announced his intent to run for re-election, although he will be running in a newly-created district that will include about half of Midland County without the City of Midland. Court challenges are still pending regarding the new maps.

We hope to hear much more about how the newly-drawn maps will impact our state’s elected officials in the next few months.

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