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Rep. VanSingel announces a regional, safety-based plan to reopen Michigan’s economy in COVID-19 era
RELEASE|April 21, 2020

State Rep. Scott VanSingel today said he supports a regional, safety-focused approach to restarting Michigan’s economy and helping to bring life back to normal.


House Republicans unveiled a blueprint Monday to help move the state toward a rolling restart – an approach based on the prevalence and risk factors of the virus, which varies by region. A task force would be established to determine which counties could have some COVID-19 restrictions eased more quickly, getting more people back to work and more facets of everyday life – when it’s safe.


“Health and safety are at the forefront of everyone’s minds, including mine, as coronavirus has affected a heartbreaking number of Michigan families,” said VanSingel, of Grant. “I appreciate the governor’s efforts to inhibit the spread of COVID-19 in Michigan, and I share that goal. I want to work with her to find the best path for each corner of our state.


VanSingel said that as the curve flattens and the number of cases diminish in many areas of the state, it is time to start determining what comes next.


“A one-size-fits all approach isn’t working. Our area simply isn’t the same as the east side of the state when it comes to this virus,” the representative said. “The time has come to work together to develop a unique plan for each area of the state to begin its restart.”


Under the plan VanSingel supports, a task force – including representatives from Gov. Whitmer’s administration, the Legislature and outside groups – would place counties into one of three tiers based on coronavirus activity and other factors such as hospitalization rates and capacity. Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties – which have the vast majority of COVID-19 cases in the state – would be in the tier with strictest restrictions. Other counties, like Newaygo, Lake and Oceana, would be placed in tiers with fewer restrictions.


The same task force would help determine which jobs and activities could be resumed safely, starting from the premise of federal CISA guidelines which in some cases are not as restrictive as the prohibitions now in place in Michigan. The task force would make frequent recommendations to the governor to reflect changes in coronavirus activity.


VanSingel stated that the plan does not aim to replace the governor’s executive orders with ones designed by the Legislature, and instead acts as an invitation to work with her to establish the best way forward for Newaygo County and all of Michigan.


“It’s an opportunity to start the conversation about what we can do to move forward without compromising public health.”


To view the full plan, visit the Michigan House Republican website.

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