Gretchen Whitmer

Michigan Capitol
Wikipedia Media Commons /

The Legislature convened Tuesday to adopt a resolution extending Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s emergency authority to address the COVID-19 health crisis.  We have more from Rick Pluta.

Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority /

Many aspects of daily life have been dramatically changed due to COVID-19, and public transportation is certainly no exception.  Although services like the Ann Arbor Area Transportion Authority (AAATA) promote a cleaner environment, they still have financial obligations and public health matters to consider.  In this week's "Issues of the Environment," AAATA CEO Matt Carpenter explains how his organization and other forms of public transit in Michigan are adapting to the pandemic in a conversation with WEMU's David Fair.

Michigan House of Representatives
Wikipedia Media Commons /

State lawmakers will return to Lansing today for the first time since March 17th.  They expect to vote on a resolution to extend Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s emergency powers to deal with the coronavirus crisis.  Rick Pluta explains.

Jeanice Swift
Lisa Barry / 89.1 WEMU

The coronavirus crisis had forced school districts across Michigan to close down all K-12 school buildings for the rest of the academic year.  But, learning will go on for students.  Ann Arbor Public Schools superintendent Dr. Jeanice Swift joined  WEMU's David Fair to discuss distance learning, academic equity, the achievement gap, and the heartbreak high school seniors are experiencing.  

Online Class
LeanForward If /

Governor Gretchen Whitmer says the doors to school buildings are locked for the rest of this school year.  This is not a surprise.  It just makes permanent an earlier order that temporarily closed schools.  That was to buy time to come up with plans to address the rapid spread of the coronavirus.  But the governor says it won’t be safe anytime soon for students and teachers to return to school.  We have more from Rick Pluta.

WISD Working On Plan To Complete School Year

Apr 2, 2020

The Washtenaw Intermediate School District is working on an action plan after Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued an executive order saying that K through 12 schools will remain closed for the remainder of the school year. 


Michigan Capitol
Wikipedia Media Commons /

Governor Gretchen Whitmer has asked the Legislature to extend her authority to deal with the coronavirus crisis.  We have more from Rick Pluta.

Ann Arbor City Council To Meet Online

Apr 2, 2020

As a result of COVID-19, Ann Arbor City Council will host an electronic meeting next week, instead of meeting in person.  

Garlin Gilchrist
State of Michigan /

Focusing on three key areas including education, small businesses, and volunteerism, Michigan's lieutenant governor, Garlin GIlchrist, has been working closely with the governor as the state grapples with the current health pandemic.  WEMU's Lisa Barry spoke with the lieutenant governor about efforts on the state and federal level concerning the impacts of the health pandemic, including some personal stories about how it is affecting his young family.

Pexels /

Governor Gretchen Whitmer is expected to sign an executive order this week with more details on the state’s plans for schools amid the COVID-19 outbreak.  As we hear from Michigan Public Radio’s Rick Pluta, schools have been closed since March 16th.

August Primary Ballot Deadline Approaching

Mar 31, 2020

An April 21st filing deadline is approaching for candidates in Washtenaw County who want to appear on the August primary ballot.  

Jerry Clayton
Washtenaw County /

Michigan's jails and prisons have typically dealt with overcrowding, which is now more dangerous due to the COVID-19 crisis.  In response, Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued an executive order designed to protect Michigan's inmates and law enforcement officers.  Washtenaw County Sheriff Jerry Clayton spoke with  WEMU's David Fair about the adjustments made already and the short and longer term plans to come. 

Rick Pluta / MPRN

School officials will have to make some tough decisions very soon about the rest of the school year.  One of them is whether to send layoff notices to teachers and other school staff who aren’t working.  That would save money for later in case the school year is extended to make up for days lost due to the COVID-19 outbreak.  School officials have sent a letter to Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the Legislature.  They’re asking the state to provide some certainty to parents, school staff, and students.  We have more from Rick Pluta.

Gretchen Whitmer
State of Michigan /

Tuesday, March 24, 2020 is the first full day of Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s executive order mandating that people stay home to avoid spreading the coronavirus.

89.1 WEMU’s Lisa Barry talked with the governor about the order and her expectation for more confirmed cases in the state.

Gretchen Whitmer
Wikipedia Media Commons /

Governor Gretchen Whitmer has signed a new executive order that further limits gatherings of people.  As Rick Pluta reports, the order took effect at midnight and lasts until April 13th. 

Ann Arbor Education Association

The Ann Arbor Education Association says they may have to extend a memorandum of agreement with Ann Arbor Public Schools if the district extends remote instruction with students because of the coronavirus pandemic.  89.1 WEMU's Jorge Avellan has the story.

Lisa Barry / WEMU

Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued a "Stay Home, Stay Safe" executive order Monday morning to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.  89.1 WEMU's Jorge Avellan tells us what that means for some local businesses in Washtenaw County.

City of Ann Arbor

With a new executive order from Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer to "stay home and stay safe," Ann Arbor's top elected official says he echoes that sentiment.

WEMU’s Lisa Barry spoke with Ann Arbor Mayor Christopher Taylor to see what the "new normal" is looking like in that city.

Online Class
PxFuel /

Governor Gretchen Whitmer continues to issue emergency orders that close public places in an effort to contain the spread of the new coronavirus

The governor closed schools for three weeks with the expectation that they would re-open April 6th.  That order can be extended and that now appears likely.

That leaves students, families, administrators, and teachers in limbo.  And they’re wondering how to ensure students are getting the education they deserve under this new reality.

We have more from Michigan Public Radio’s Rick Pluta. 


A state board has approved $20 million in grants and loans to help small businesses affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.  As Rick Pluta tells us, the money is largely directed toward businesses ordered to shut down or scale back their operations. 

National Guard
Wikipedia Media Commons /

Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed more executive orders Wednesday to address the COVID-19 outbreak in Michigan.  We have more from Rick Pluta.

Governor Tom Wolf /

There are 11 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Michigan.  That brings the total number to 65, according to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.  As Rick Pluta tells us, there is still a shortage of kits to test for the disease.

#StayHome /

Washtenaw County health officials have been working around the clock tracking the coronavirus in our community.

WEMU's Lisa Barry talks with county health officer Jimena Loveluck, who shares the latest information impacting residents.

Jeanice Swift
Ann Arbor Wiki /

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced that all public and private schools in Michigan will be shut down until early April.  Yet, some districts, including Ann Arbor Public Schools, had already made the decision.  The Ann Arbor Public Schools' superintendent, Dr. Jeanice Swift, explains the district's plan during the shutdown in a conversation with WEMU's David Fair.

Gretchen Whitmer
State of Michigan /

Governor Gretchen Whitmer says gatherings of 100 or more people should be cancelled or postponed.  She says businesses should relax their sick leave policies.  As we hear from Rick Pluta, these recommendations are part of her response to the first reported cases of COVID-19 in the state.

Jeff Irwin
Michigan Senate Democrats /

Governor Gretchen Whitmer recently released the latest Michigan state budget, and it includes funding for a number of environmental programs.  And, it builds on the initiatives launched in her first budget cycle as governor.  In this week's "Issues of the Environment," WEMU's David Fair talks over environmental priorities, progress, and challenges with State Senator Jeff Irwin. 

Gretchen Whitmer
State of Michigan /

President Trump delivered his latest State of the Union address on Tuesday night, and Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer was selected to give the Democratic rebuttal.  The governor delivered her response at East Lansing High School, which is attended by her two daughters.

Gretchen Whitmer
Wikipedia Media Commons /

Governor Gretchen Whitmer delivered the official Democratic Party response to the State of the Union address.  Rick Pluta reports. 

Huron River Watershed Council
D. Brown / Huron River Watershed Council

PFAS contamination continues to threaten Michigan's environment, as well as the health of its citizens.  Over the past month, action at the state level has been taken to fight this problem.  In this week's "Issues of the Environment," Rebecca Esselman, executive director of the Huron River Watershed Council, discusses progress and challenges with WEMU's David Fair.

Wikipedia Media Commons /

Governor Gretchen Whitmer spent at least part of her weekend working on the Democratic response to President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address.  She will deliver the response Tuesday evening following the President’s speech.  Rick Pluta has more.