Whitmer extends coronavirus emergency through August 11

LANSING (AP) — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Tuesday extended Michigan's coronavirus emergency declaration through Aug. 11, five months after she first issued it, pointing to an uptick in new cases over the past three weeks.

The move, which was expected, allows the Democratic governor to keep in place various orders designed to curb the virus, including certain business closures, limits on gatherings, a mask requirement and longer unemployment benefits.

She pointed to the state's death toll — at least 6,236 confirmed and probable deaths related to COVID-19.

“That’s more than 6,000 of our parents, grandparents, friends and neighbors. And the rising numbers we’ve seen over the past few weeks prove that this virus is still a very real threat in our state,” Whitmer said in a statement in which she again urged residents to wear a face covering and practice physical distancing while out in public.

She first issued an emergency declaration in March and has been lengthening it on her own since the Republican-led Legislature — after initially extending it — blocked future extensions due to a sweeping stay-at-home order and later sued her.

The state on Tuesday reported 584 new confirmed cases and six additional deaths.

There were roughly 70 new cases per 100,000 people over the past two weeks, a lower rate than all but eight states.


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