Daily Briefs

Lawmaker panel OKs budget cuts, 'rainy day' cash for $2B gap

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A panel of Michigan lawmakers approved proposals Wednesday to dip into state cash reserves and make budget cuts, part of a wider plan to address a $2.2 billion budget hole caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

State Budget Director Chris Kolb told the panel that the state will draw $350 million out of its $1.2 billion "rainy day" fund. Lawmakers meeting for a joint session of the House and Senate appropriations committees also approved an executive order from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer that cuts nearly $667 million from the budget by reducing funding to state agencies.

Legislators, who voted 15-1, praised the plans as the best solution to address the shortfall caused by shutdowns related to the coronavirus outbreak.

"This has been very intense, especially I think, over the last two to three weeks time," said Midland Republican Jim Stamas, chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee. "I think we found a way to come together to find a solution."

The state will also rely heavily on hundreds of millions of dollars in federal relief, part of which will be directed to schools to offset a shortfalls for K-12 schools and higher education.

Whitmer, a Democrat, and Republican legislative leaders announced an outline of the plan earlier in the summer.


Webinar to look at ‘COVID-19 Safeguard Requirements for  Your Workplace’

The Association of Corporate Counsel-Michigan Chapter (ACC-MI) and Warner Norcross + Judd LLP will present the first webinar in a three-part series, titled “COVID-19 Safeguard Requirements for Your Workplace,” designed to inform in-house counsel on the important and specific issues facing employers today.

The webinar will take place Thursday, July 23, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and will begin with a 50-minute presentation followed by two half-hour interactive breakout sessions.

Warner attorneys Ed Bardelli, Amanda Fielder, Jonathan Kok, and Steve Palazzolo will present an overview of the safeguard requirements for reopening a workplace.

Businesses have faced myriad practical and legal employment challenges as they implement measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 while minimizing the economic impact. Executive orders provide guidance for employers on how to maintain compliance, yet are vague or silent in many areas, thus resulting in a variety of employer questions. The webinar will review the safeguard requirements and also discuss potential employment litigation issues relating to terminations and furloughs, workplace safety, discrimination and wage and hour issues.

To register for this free event, visit www.acc.com/chapters-networks/chapters/michigan and click on “events.”


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