By SUE SUCHYTA
Sunday Times Newspapers
TAYLOR – As COVID-19 cases continue to rise, state Rep. Alex Garza (D-Taylor) said at the Dec. 1 City Council meeting that the current three-week emergency order will likely be extended for another three weeks.
“Today has been the deadliest day as far as COVID cases go in Michigan since March,” he said. “If we do see another three weeks, it would expire on Dec. 29, but we are still looking at the numbers, and the governor still has some work to do as far as what that looks like if (Gov. Gretchen Whitmer) does decide to have the department issue that order again.”
The state is near the end of a three-week emergency order issued by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Nov. 18. It is set to expire Dec. 8.
Garza said the House returned to session Dec. 1 in Lansing, and the Health Department director provided an update on the COVID-19 vaccine progress.
“There are actually two different vaccines that are coming to Michigan,” he said. “One through Pfizer and one through Moderna, which are both being approved through the FDA currently.”
Garza said the two vaccines should be in Michigan beginning in early January, and those who are vaccinated will need two shots, each a month apart, with the immunity becoming effective within 60 days. He said that, like a flu shot, a yearly immunization may be needed as the coronavirus evolves.
“As of right now, it is looked at as an annual vaccine,” he said. “And I do plan on getting it – absolutely.”
Garza said they have been able to obtain $80,000 in grants for local District 12 businesses to help them remain afloat and meet payroll, and they are hoping to get additional grants in the future. He said they will post application information on his office’s public Facebook page, facebook.com/RepGarza.
He said that his office has received many calls about the Unemployment Insurance Agency since the Nov. 18 onset of the three-week emergency order.
“My office is still open during this time to handle any unemployment-related concerns through UIA,” he said. “Currently, we still have over a thousand cases that we have worked through from my office alone in District 12.”
Garza encouraged constituents to call his office, at 517-373-0852 for help as needed.