Zorn urges public comment on making MIOSHA rules permanent

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Dale Zorn on Thursday said that Michigan residents can submit comments through a new Senate website on the governor’s plan to make the state’s current COVID-19 emergency workplace rules permanent.

“I was disappointed, but not surprised, that the governor was working to make the COVID-19 workplace restrictions permanent at the same time she was telling the people about her plan to lift the restrictions as vaccination rates improved,” said Zorn, R-Ida. “When she announced her plan, I said that although Michigan families can now see the light at the end of the tunnel, there is nothing to stop the governor from changing direction on the benchmarks. While the benchmarks remain, the train we didn’t see coming was making the restrictions permanent.

“Thankfully, the Michigan people get a chance to have their say in this process, and we have created a new website to allow them to submit their thoughts.”

After the Michigan Supreme Court ruled in October 2020 that Gov. Whitmer did not have the authority to continue issuing executive orders by declaring a state of emergency, the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration used its ability to put in place COVID-19 emergency workplace safety rules.

MIOSHA’s second six-month extension of the rules expires on Oct. 14, so the agency has announced it is taking steps to make them permanent. As part of the rule-making process, any department rule changes are subject to a public comment period and a public hearing. The MIOSHA rules are scheduled for a virtual hearing on May 26 at 9 a.m.

Comments on the proposed rules can be made during the public hearing or can be submitted in advance by mail or email until May 26 at 5 p.m.

A Senate website has been launched where residents can provide input on the proposed rules. The information provided will be sent directly to the department as a public comment. To submit a comment, visit www.MISenateGOP.com/WhitmerEmergency.