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Beer Fest canceled

COVID-19 updates

Participants fill Mattson Lower Harbor Park in Marquette during a previous Beer Fest. The Michigan Brewers Guild has canceled the U.P. Fall Beer Festival, which it had been planning to host on Sept. 12 in Marquette. (Journal file photo)

By CHRISTIE MASTRIC

Journal Staff Writer

MARQUETTE — The Michigan Brewers Guild has canceled the U.P. Fall Beer Festival, which it had been planning to host on Sept. 12 in Marquette.

The cancellation was due to, of course, the COVID-19 pandemic, which has canceled other popular events in the area and the Upper Peninsula, including Art on the Rocks, the OutBack Art Fair, the Blueberry Festival and others.

The U.P. Fall Beer Festival was the third festival the guild had to cancel this year, the others being the Spring Festival in Traverse City and the Summer Festival in Ypsilanti.

“We are disappointed that we will once again be unable to gather and celebrate local beer with friends and family, but it is for their safety and that of our communities that we made this decision,” said Scott Graham, guild executive director, in a statement.

The next U.P. Beer Fall Festival is scheduled for Sept. 11, 2021.

Visitor restrictions put in place again

UP Health System-Marquette and UPHS-Bell are reimplementing certain visitor restrictions in response to the recent increase in COVID-19 cases. As of Wednesday, the Upper Peninsula was designated as a medium-risk area. The previous limited visitation hours of 1 to 6 p.m. have been suspended until further notice.

Gar Atchison, market president of UPHS, and Mitch Leckelt, UPHS-Bell CEO, issued a statement.

“Like many communities across the country, we are starting to see an uptick in COVID-19 cases in the U.P.,” they said. “While we have not yet seen an increase in cases at our hospitals, we believe the proactive effort is necessary to do our part in keeping our patients and employees as safe as possible.”

Effective today, visitors will only be permitted to enter their facilities if they are:

≤ Necessary for the provision of medical care, the support of activities of daily living, or the exercise of the power of attorney or court-appointed guardianship for an individual under the facility’s care;

≤ Accompanying an admitted inpatient specifically at the time of admission and at the time of discharge to assist with the process and post-procedure. Routine visiting will not be permitted.

≤ A support person with the patient in the Family Birthing Center at any time, including one certified doula or midwife during labor.

≤ A parent, foster parent or guardian of an individual under 21 years of age who is under the facility’s care;

≤ Visiting an individual under the facility’s care who is in critical condition or hospice care;

≤ Visiting under urgent circumstances or for the purpose of performing official government functions; and

≤ Able to wear an appropriate mask or face covering. If you are unable to wear an appropriate mask or face covering, you may be denied entry into the facility.

UPHS-Marquette has continued screening guidelines for visitors. Individuals who do not meet the evaluation criteria will be denied entry. Criteria includes symptoms of a respiratory infection and contact in the last 14 days with someone with a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19.

Grants for hazard pay announced

State treasurer Rachael Eubanks on Wednesday announced two new grant programs that will provide an overall total of $300 million to help first responders receive premium hazard pay and reimburse local governments for payroll costs incurred due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Effective immediately, eligible local units of government can apply for a grant from the First Responder Hazard Pay Premiums Program and the Public Safety and Public Health Payroll Reimbursement Program.

The First Responder Hazard Pay Premiums Program offers $100 million to fund additional compensation for first responders. Eligible first responders performed hazardous duty or work involving physical hardship related to COVID-19.

Cities, villages, townships, counties, public airport operators and certain ambulance operators can be reimbursed up to $1,000 per eligible employee. No single applicant may receive more than $5 million. Applications from qualifying units of government will be funded on a first-come, first-served basis.

The Public Safety and Public Health Payroll Reimbursement Program makes available $200 million to reimburse cities, villages, townships and counties for eligible public safety and public health payroll expenditures incurred from April through this month.

Cities, villages, townships and counties can participate in the program if they have eligible public safety and public health payroll expenditures.

The first application round will be available for reimbursement of April- and May-eligible payroll expenditures. If funding is available after the first application round is completed, a second application round will be available for reimbursement of the June- and July-eligible payroll expenditures.

Both grant programs use federal funding available to the state of Michigan through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act Act.

Local units of government with questions about the grant programs may call the Treasury CARES Grant Programs hotline at 517-335-0155 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Christie Mastric can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 250. Her email address is cbleck@miningjournal.net

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