Here is the latest Michigan news from The Associated Press at 4:40 p.m. EST
FLINT, Mich. (AP) — Some Flint residents impacted by months of lead-tainted water are looking past expected charges against former Gov. Rick Snyder and others in his administration to healing physical and emotional damages left by the crisis. Corrosive water from the Flint River which caused lead to leach from pipes is blamed with causing learning disabilities in scores of children and other medical problems among adults in the majority Black city. A pediatrician who helped call attention to childhood health risks from exposure to lead in Flint’s water says “without justice, it’s impossible to heal the scars of the crisis.”
LANSING, Mich (AP) — Michigan House Speaker Jason Wentworth says the GOP-led Legislature must change the way the state governs and holds elected officials accountable. On the first day of the new legislative session Wednesday, Wentworth said Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has damaged public trust due to the strict measures imposed to curb the coronavirus pandemic and that government must act to restore that trust and improve transparency. Michigan has imposed some of the strictest coronavirus restrictions in the country during the pandemic, a point of contention for many Republicans.
LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer says the plan is for Michigan restaurants to reopen for indoor dining on Feb. 1, two and a half months after an order to close amid a surge in coronavirus cases and hospitalizations. The current order prohibiting indoor eating and drinking was extended Wednesday. Non-contact organized sports can resume starting Saturday. Michigan is among just a few states to allow no indoor restaurant dining and is the only one without a detailed plan on how and when reopening can occur, according to the Michigan Restaurant & Lodging Association. The state is expected to release details on the reopening next week.
BORING, Ore. (AP) — A growing number of restaurants nationwide are opening for indoor dining in defiance of strict COVID-19 regulations in their states, saying they are targeted unfairly and are barely hanging on. In Oregon, a movement to defy an indoor-dining ban began quietly on Jan. 1 and is gaining steam despite warnings from state inspectors and surging COVID-19 case numbers. Democratic Gov. Kate Brown has also threatened restaurants with the revocation of liquor and slot machine licenses in a standoff that’s increasingly attracting the attention of far-right groups such as the People’s Rights network. Similar revolts have also played out in places with strict COVID-19 rules, including Michigan, Pennsylvania, Washington and California.