LANSING, Mich. (WXYZ) — As protesters speak out against her actions Governor Gretchen Whitmer is firing back, saying there is evidence demonstrations may have spread the virus to other parts of the state.
There is no question. The COVID-19 crisis is having a negative economic impact on not just families and businesses, but the state. This week state lawmakers warned that we are going to see billions of dollars less in sales tax and other tax revenue for the state as people are not out spending. Some warned that it could force cuts of 10 to 30% in per pupil funding in schools. Governor Gretchen Whitmer (D-Michigan) said the situation is dire.
“We know it is going to be a big hit to our school aid and our general fund and that is why we need Congress to move quickly,” said Gov. Whitmer.
Protesters in Lansing are sending the message the governor needs to lift restrictions on businesses and gatherings to stop that financial pain. The governor says the problem is that if we see a second wave of COVID-19, the economy will suffer.
“COVID-19 is still present in 79 out of 83 of our counties. We are not out of the woods yet,” said the governor in response to pressure.
She is calling on people to persevere and continue social distancing, offering hope. We are trending towards lifting more restrictions soon.
“Having a gathering that is ten or less would be in the next phase and that is a phase I am hopeful we can move into very quickly,” she said.
Governor Gretchen Whitmer says to ensure we do take precautions to stop the spread of COVID-19. She says that message is key for protesters because there is some evidence demonstrations may have spread the virus to other parts of the state.
“There was a company that put a geo-fence around the first protest and it does appear to correlate with where we saw some COVID activity soar,” she explained.
“If you are unhappy and you want to protest, I respect that. But show up with a mask on, stay six-feet apart from other people and do not incite violence or make threats of violence,” she said.
Additional Coronavirus information and resources:
Click here for a page with resources including a COVID-19 overview from the CDC, details on cases in Michigan, a timeline of Governor Gretchen Whitmer's orders since the outbreak, coronavirus' impact on Southeast Michigan, and links to more information from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, the CDC and the WHO.
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