July 5, 2020

Volume X, Number 187

July 03, 2020

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Michigan Enters Stage 4 Of Reopening


Michigan residents are no longer required to stay home, subject to social gathering restrictions

Retailers, bars and restaurants are scheduled to reopen the first two weeks of June, subject to capacity restrictions and other safety measures

Gyms, salons, tattoo parlors and other businesses that necessarily involve close contact and shared surfaces must remain closed

On June 1, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-110 that moves the state to Stage 4 of Michigan’s Safe Start Plan. 

Stage 4 of the Safe Start Plan provides that Michigan residents are no longer required to stay home and may attend social gatherings of up to 10 people indoors and not more than 100 people outdoors, with required social distancing.  

Additionally, the order allows most business sectors to resume operations, subject to the implementation of certain safeguards, within the first two weeks of June. Certain businesses are still required to remain closed or limit in-person work. The order also prohibits specific activities that present a higher risk of infection.

Timeline for Reopening Specific Businesses

Beginning June 4, retailers will no longer be required to permit patrons to enter by appointment only, but rather can resume full operations subject to capacity limits based on the store’s size.  

Per the order, on June 8, restaurants and bars may fully reopen subject to a 50 percent capacity limit Outdoor swimming pools and day camps for children, outdoor parks and recreational facilities, libraries and museums may also fully reopen on June 8, subject to prior guidelines. Note that local regulations may still prohibit the opening of outdoor parks and recreational facilities, public swimming pools, and libraries and museums.

Office buildings are likewise able to reopen, however, any work that is capable of being performed remotely must continue to be performed remotely under the order.  

Reopening Safeguard Requirements

The reopening of permitted businesses is subject to the restrictions and safeguard requirements set forth in Executive Order 2020-97 to help mitigate the risk of spreading the coronavirus.    

The “Safeguards” order incorporates both general and industry specific workplace standards contained in prior executive orders applicable to all businesses which were previously permitted to reopen, along with additional provisions governing the reopening of outpatient healthcare facilities, requiring such healthcare facilities to:

  • Post signs at entrance(s) instructing patients to wear a face covering when inside

  • Limit waiting-area occupancy to the number of individuals who can be present while staying 6 feet away from one another and ask patients, if possible, to wait in cars for their appointment to be called

  • Mark waiting rooms to enable six feet of social distancing (e.g., by placing X’s on the ground and/or removing seats in the waiting room)

  • Enable contactless sign-in (e.g., sign in on phone app) as soon as practicable

  • Add special hours for highly vulnerable patients, including the elderly and those with chronic conditions

  • Conduct a common screening protocol for all patients, including a temperature check and questions about COVID-19 symptoms

  • Place hand sanitizer and face coverings at patient entrance(s)

  • Require employees to make proper use of personal protective equipment in accordance with guidance from the CDC and the U.S. Occupational Health and Safety Administration

  • Require patients to wear a face covering when in the facility, except as necessary for identification or to facilitate an examination or procedure

  • Install physical barriers at sign-in, temperature screening, or other service points that normally require personal interaction (e.g., Plexiglas, cardboard, tables)

  • Employ telehealth and telemedicine to the greatest extent possible

  • Limit the number of appointments to maintain social distancing and allow adequate time between appointments for cleaning

  • Employ specialized procedures for patients with high temperatures or respiratory symptoms (e.g., special entrances, having them wait in their car) to avoid exposing other patients in the waiting room

  • Deep clean examination rooms after patients with respiratory symptoms and clean rooms between all patients

  • Establish procedures for building disinfection in accordance with CDC guidance if it is suspected that an employee or patient has COVID-19 or if there is a confirmed case

In addition to the “Safeguards” order, Executive Order 2020-111 was also issued on June 1 setting forth certain requirements relating to the housing and working conditions of migrant and seasonal agricultural workers.

Businesses Still Prohibited from Opening

EO 2020-110 continues to prohibit the opening of those businesses and activities that necessarily involve close contact and shared services, including: 

  • Indoor theaters, cinemas and performance venues

  • Indoor gyms, fitness centers, recreation centers, sports facilities, exercise facilities, exercise studios, pools, and the like

  • Facilities offering nonessential personal care services, including hair, nail, tanning, massage, traditional spa, tattoo, body art, piercing services, and similar personal care services that involve close contact of persons

  • Casinos licensed by the Michigan Gaming Control Board, racetracks licensed by the Michigan Gaming Control Board, and Millionaire Parties licensed by the Michigan Gaming Control Board

  • Indoor services and facilities or outdoor services or facilities involving close contact of persons, for amusement or other recreational or entertainment purposes, such as amusement parks, arcades, bingo halls, bowling alleys, indoor climbing facilities, indoor dance areas, skating rinks, trampoline parts, and other similar recreational or entertainment facilities

© 2020 BARNES & THORNBURG LLPNational Law Review, Volume X, Number 156


About this Author

Mary E. Comazzi Aviation and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles & Corporate Attorney Barnes & Thornburg Southfield, MI
Of Counsel

Mary Comazzi learned precisely what direction she wanted for her career by taking the right steps on the right course at the right time, and she strives to do the same for her clients. Mary’s general commercial and aviation clients appreciate her honesty, practicality and responsiveness in assessing their issues and helping address problems they are facing, in the air or on the ground.

Mary helps clients craft, negotiate and document mergers, acquisitions, reorganizations, joint ventures, and other complex commercial transactions. She also has extensive experience structuring...

Erika Weiss, Barnes Thornburg Law Firm, Grand Rapids, Tribal Law and Litigation Attorney

Erika Weiss is an associate in Barnes & Thornburg’s Grand Rapids office and a member of the Litigation Department. Ms. Weiss provides organizational and strategic guidance to the firm’s litigation clients. She has experience in commercial litigation, business law, securities litigation and American Indian tribal law.

Prior to joining Barnes & Thornburg, Ms. Weiss worked for a firm representing tribal governments and tribal entities. She provided general counsel legal services to tribally owned businesses and assisted tribes in residential and businesses leases on tribal land. She has defended tribes in tribal, state and federal courts, as well as U.S. territory administrative bodies.

As a descendant of the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians, Ms. Weiss will continue to focus her practice on providing legal services to tribal governments and their businesses. She has experience drafting ordinances, codes and regulations; representing tribal interests in numerous Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) cases; and assisting tribal housing authorities draft policies and procedures, recover property, and prepare for the implementation of Helping Expedite and Advance Responsible Tribal Home Ownership (HEARTH) Act regulations.