Mt. Pleasant City Commission Adopts Resolution in Support of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Emergency Order Regarding Face Masks

On October 12, 2020 the Mt. Pleasant City Commission adopted a resolution in support of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Emergency Order regarding the wearing of face masks due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). This new virus strain is an easily transferable respiratory disease that can result in serious illness or death and it is caused by a new strain of virus that has not previously been identified in humans and can easily spread from person to person. There has recently been an increase in confirmed COVID-19 cases in Isabella County. 


RESOLUTION SUPPORTING MICHIGAN DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES EMERGENCY ORDER REGARDING FACE COVERINGS


WHEREAS, the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is a respiratory disease that can result in serious illness or death and it is caused by a new strain of virus that has not previously been identified in humans and can easily spread from person to person; and


WHEREAS, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Director Robert Gordon has issued an emergency order to slow the spread of the virus including, but not limited to, requiring face coverings in public places and in certain instances outdoors; and


WHEREAS, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued guidance to the public and employers to slow the spread of the virus including, but not limited to, encouraging individuals to wear face coverings and practice social distancing; and


WHEREAS, there have been 677 confirmed cases within Isabella County as of October 5, 2020; and WHEREAS, the City Commission recognizes the importance and effectiveness of face coverings in helping to slow the spread of the virus; and


WHEREAS, the City Commission desires to assist in returning to economic stability, which can more likely be obtained if businesses can stay open and gradually return to full capacity, and understands that this may be dependent on slowing the spread of the virus; and


WHEREAS, the City Commission desires to do what it can to keep residents, visitors, business owners and front-line workers safe; and


WHEREAS, the City Commission previously passed a resolution supporting the face coverings order by Governor Whitmer; and


WHEREAS, the City Commission emphasizes the personal responsibility of each individual to wear a face covering and believes doing so reflects a sign of respect for neighbors, front line and essential workers, and all residents and visitors


WHEREAS, the City Commission desires to provide leadership and support to implement the wearing of face coverings; and


NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the City Commission of the City of Mount Pleasant as follows:


1. The City Commission supports Director Gordon’s Emergency Order requiring wearing of face coverings in any indoor public space and when outdoors and unable to maintain a distance of six feet or more from individuals who are not members of the same household.


2. Individuals are encouraged to implement their personal responsibility by wearing face coverings as required to help keep others safe both in public places and as appropriate outdoors and to eliminate putting businesses and law enforcement in the position of enforcing the standards.


3. Businesses are encouraged to do their part in implementing the requirements so that customers feel safe that the expected protocols are in place.


4. In the rare instances where law enforcement is called upon for enforcement, the City Commission supports the approach of educating first and attempting to get voluntary compliance. Using law enforcement discretion, in instances where personal responsibility and voluntary compliance cannot be achieved and the law enforcement staff feels that enforcement is the best option in the circumstances, enforcement that is deemed necessary will be supported. 

Safety Information Regarding Fall Sports – Mt. Pleasant Recreation Department

Dear Parents,

First of all, thank you for your involvement in Mt. Pleasant Parks and Recreation programming.  We are thrilled to have our community’s youth outdoors and staying active as we enter into the Fall season.  As always, the health and safety of our community – especially those involved in our programs – remains our top priority. Our department is taking steps to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19, but this is a community effort, and one which requires the support and assistance from all of us to be effective.

As most of you are aware, the Central Michigan District Health Department recently issued a public health emergency order in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This order reinforces the importance of all participants adhering to our program safety guidelines. To host our programs, the guidelines below must be followed:

  • Equipment and supplies for outdoor athletic practices are shared to the minimum extent possible and are subject to frequent and thorough disinfection and cleaning as outlined in Executive Order 2020-160.
  • The gathering is designed to ensure that persons not part of the same household maintain six feet of distance from one another at all times.
  • The gathering must continue to comply with mask wearing provisions of Executive Order 2020-153.

Soccer and flag football practices take place in public spaces, and are highly visible to the general publicAll it takes is one person to voice a concern or complaint putting both programs in jeopardy. Therefore, we must ALL remain vigilant and keep interactions to a minimum, wear a face covering, and maintain proper social distancing. If we all do our part, we can continue to keep our kids active and engaged this Fall. In addition, we can be an example to our community that these programs can operate in a safe and responsible manner. 

Thank you once again to our participating families and volunteer coaches for doing your part in keeping our community safe and providing our youth with a rewarding outdoor experience this Fall. Please stay safe and healthy and we will see you on the field.

Ryan Longoria, CPRP

Director of Recreation and Sports

City of Mt. Pleasant

Central Michigan District Health Department Issues Public Health Emergency Order (Updated 10/7/2020)

Restricting Gatherings in Union Township and the City of Mt. Pleasant, Michigan

Outdoor social gatherings or events limited to 25 people or less.

10/7/2020 UPDATE: The Central Michigan District Health Department has updated and reissued the local public health order to coincide with applicable Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Emergency Orders issued on 10/5/2020. You can view the updated order here:

8/24/2020: Central Michigan District Health Department is issuing a public health emergency order to limit the size of social gatherings or events within Union Township and the City of Mt. Pleasant. No more than 25 people may gather at outdoor events. The local order enhances existing state orders and further restricts social gatherings in areas at increased risk for COVID-19 outbreaks since the student population returned to the local community. The order takes effect on August 24, 2020 at 8:00 p.m. and will remain in effect until amended or rescinded. (Updated 10/7/2020)

“We have seen a large increase in cases since students returned to the Mt. Pleasant area. Our investigations have shown that the majority of these cases had attended large social gatherings. Restrictions on the size of outdoor gatherings, along with other preventive measures will help us reduce the spread of this virus” said Steve Hall, R.S., M.S, health officer for the Central Michigan District Health Department.

The local order reduces the size of allowable outdoor social gatherings from 100 down to 25. Indoor gatherings remain limited to 10 or fewer people not of the same household, as per Michigan Executive Order 2020-160. At any gathering or event, inside or out, individuals not living in the same household should keep a minimum of 6 feet distance from one another.

Face coverings continue to be required in public indoor settings and any crowded outdoor settings under Executive Order 2020-153.

Isabella County has reported a total of 297 confirmed cases of COVID-19 to date. County data shows that in the third week of August there was a 350% increase in the number of COVID-19 cases compared to the previous week. During that week, 92% of reported cases were among those 18 to 24-years-old. This is compared to the first 2 weeks of August in which 39% of cases were among this age group. With thousands of students returning to Central Michigan University in Isabella County, many from states with high rates of COVID-19, living in congregate settings, and traditionally disposed toward socializing in large groups, further restrictions need to be put in place to prevent outbreaks related to large social gatherings and organized events. Large social gatherings have demonstrated an increased public health risk with potential for further outbreak, including super-spreading events.

“We wholeheartedly support the Central Michigan District Health Officer’s order further limiting outdoor gatherings to protect our community from the spread of COVID 19,” says Nancy Ridley, Mt. Pleasant City Manager. “These are not normal times and it takes all of us working together to mitigate the spread of this virus. This includes the consistent wearing of face masks and changes in how we interact and gather. Putting these safety measures in place increase the chances of our schools and businesses staying open, as well as protecting all of our residents, our community’s visitors, and our valued frontline workers.”

“Union Township supports the Central Michigan District Health Department’s Health Officer’s social gathering limitation 100% and thank him for his leadership,” says Union Township Manager Mark Stuhldreher. “Whether permanent residents, students, or visitors to our community we all are the key to slowing the spread of COVID-19. If we all follow the guidance of our public health officials, we can keep ourselves, first responders, and our neighbors as safe as possible. It’s up to each of us to do our part.”

State law provides local health officers with the authority to issue orders to protect the public health under Section 2453 of the Public Health Code (MCL 333.2453). Those who disregard the order could be subject to a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for not more than six months and/or a fine of up to $200.

You can read the order here: https://b7415fe4-3f8d-4ed9-b594-7f18ad7f0403.filesusr.com/…

To reduce the spread of illness in our community, the Health Department recommends wearing a face covering, maintaining a minimum of 6 feet distance from others not in your household and washing your hands frequently. Testing is recommended for anyone reporting to work in person, with known exposure or with any mild or unusual symptoms. Symptoms may take up to 14 days after exposure to appear, and individuals are considered contagious two days before symptoms appear.

The number of local cases, guidance for employers, prevention information, testing options and more are available at https://www.cmdhd.org/novel-coronavirus. Health Department staff are also available to answer questions. CMDHD has established a Coronavirus Message Center line at 989-773-5921 extension 1444. Leave your name, phone number, county of residence, and a brief message. Staff will return calls as soon as possible.

This article has been brought to you by Central Michigan District Health Department, which serves the counties of Arenac, Clare, Gladwin, Isabella, Osceola and Roscommon. Visit our website at http://www.cmdhd.org, LIKE Central Michigan District Health Department on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @CMiDHD.

Mt. Pleasant City Commission adopts resolution in support of wearing face masks due to COVID-19

On July 13, 2020 the Mt. Pleasant City Commission adopted a resolution in support of wearing face masks due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).  This new virus strain is an easily transferrable respiratory disease which can result in serious illness or death. Isabella County has recently seen an increase in confirmed COVID-19 cases.

RESOLUTION SUPPORTING EXECUTIVE ORDER 2020-147 REGARDING FACE COVERINGS

WHEREAS, the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is a respiratory disease that can result in serious illness or death and it is caused by a new strain of virus that has not previously been identified in humans and can easily spread from person to person; and

WHEREAS, Governor Whitmer has declared a state of emergency to harness resources across the state to slow the spread of the virus including, but not limited to, requiring face coverings in public places and in certain instances outdoors (Executive Order 2020-147); and

WHEREAS, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued guidance to the public and employers to slow the spread of the virus including, but not limited to, encouraging individuals to wear face coverings and practice social distancing; and

WHEREAS, there has been a recent increase in confirmed cases within Isabella County; and

WHEREAS, the City Commission recognizes the importance and effectiveness of face coverings in helping to slow the spread of the virus; and

WHEREAS, the City Commission desires to assist in returning to economic stability, which can more likely be obtained if businesses can stay open and gradually return to full capacity, and understands that this may be dependent on slowing the spread of the virus; and

WHEREAS, the City Commission desires to do what it can to keep residents, visitors, business owners and front-line workers safe; and

WHEREAS, the City Commission emphasizes the personal responsibility of each individual to wear a face covering and believes doing so reflects a sign of respect for neighbors, front line and essential workers, and all residents and visitors

WHEREAS, the City Commission desires to provide leadership and support to implement the wearing of face coverings; and

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the City Commission of the City of Mount Pleasant as follows:

  1. The City Commission supports Executive Order 2020-147 requiring wearing of face coverings in any indoor public space and when outdoors and unable to maintain a distance of six feet or more from individuals who are not members of the same household. 
  • Individuals are encouraged to implement their personal responsibility by wearing face coverings as required to help keep others safe both in public places and as appropriate outdoors and to eliminate putting businesses and law enforcement in the position of enforcing the standards
  • Businesses are encouraged to do their part in implementing the requirements so that customers feel safe that the expected protocols are in place.
  • In the rare instances where law enforcement is called upon for enforcement, the City Commission supports the approach of educating first and attempting to get voluntary compliance.   Using law enforcement discretion, in instances where personal responsibility and voluntary compliance cannot be achieved and the law enforcement staff feels that enforcement is the best option in the circumstances, enforcement that is deemed necessary will be supported.

Topics to watch at the Mt. Pleasant City Commission Meeting – July 13, 2020

Here are the topics to watch at the next virtual Mt. Pleasant City Commission meeting scheduled for Monday, July 13, 2020 at 7 p.m.

  • Introduce an ordinance to amend Chapter 50: Solid Wastes and set a public hearing for July 27, 2020 on the same.
  • Consider authorizing the execution of documents associated with the Economic Development Association (EDA) Grant for Industrial Park South Detention Pond.
  • Consider resolution to select an alternative date for the 2020 July Board of Review meeting.
  • Consider postponed resolution setting fee for Christmas tree pickup.
  • Consider authorization for amended loan repayment terms for Brownfield Redevelopment Loan.

To view the entire meeting packet visit: 

How to follow public meetings during social distancing:

In an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19, the City of Mt. Pleasant is following federal, state and county health officials’ recommendations while still providing valuable City services.

Even though the City Commission meeting will take place as scheduled, it will be an electronically conducted meeting as allowed by the Governor’s Executive Order and the City Commission Chambers will be closed to the public.

Citizens can watch the City Commission meeting live on Spectrum Charter Channel 188, web streamed at https://www.youtube.com/user/MtPleasantMi/ or via Zoom.

Zoom Meeting instructions via computer, phone, or dial-in number are as follows:

Zoom Meeting information

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89057011678?pwd=RTJJa1JNY3pmSmxwaFNKWkM2M0ozdz09

Meeting ID: 890 5701 1678

Password: 839170

Phone dial-in: (312) 626-6799

Audio and video will be muted for members of the public and then unmuted by the host during public comment periods.

  • For participants accessing via computer or smartphone please use the “Raise Your Hand” icon to indicate you would like to speak. First, click on the “Participants” icon at the bottom of your screen. Next, click on the “Raise Your Hand” icon near the bottom right corner of the screen.
    • To raise your hand for telephone dial-in participants, press *9.
    • Members of the public may be muted or removed if using abusive language or if they become disruptive to the meeting.

Any citizen desiring to make a public comment on an agenda item must email their comments to comment@mt-pleasant.org either before or during the meeting. Individuals must include their name and address.

Update from City Manager, Nancy Ridley – July 2020

The past several months challenged us in ways we never thought possible. We found ourselves battling, and continuing to battle, a virus that knows no boundaries. Once only a news story from across the globe, COVID-19 quickly made its presence known in our state and in our community.

Throughout our City we were required to temporarily close many of our businesses and schools and halted our daily activities. As we start to reopen, like the rest of the nation, we are trying to find the delicate balance of getting our society up and running while staying socially distanced and safe. To accomplish this, City Commissioners and City staff are finding creative ways to conduct City business and assist our local businesses and residents in this financially challenging time.

Outdoor Business Activity Options

To make the transition of doing business in a COVID-19 landscape a little easier, the City Commission adopted a resolution temporarily authorizing outdoor business activities for all businesses within the City limits.These activities include waiving certain standards and fees for outdoor dining, tent and merchandise display permits. 

To allow for proper social distancing, businesses are able to utilize the space directly in front of their establishment and possibly adjacent frontage of service providers who will not be using their outdoor space. Although license fees are being waived, businesses must still apply for an outdoor dining license or merchandise display license if using public space. Expedited approvals are in place for use of privately-owned outdoor space.

In the downtown business district, Broadway Street between Main and University Street is closed for restaurant, merchant and public use. Even though this street closure has the possibility to last until September 30, staff is reviewing it every two weeks.

Summer Tax Payments

Due to financial hardships the COVID-19 pandemic may have caused to City taxpayers, the City Commission also approved waiving late charges which accrue on unpaid taxes from August 1 to September 14. This waiver is for tax payers who do not escrow their tax payments with financial institutions. Based on state law, interest will be applied at the rate of 1% on any unpaid balance on September 15, 2020 and the rate shall increase by 1% each month thereafter until paid. 

Additionally, some taxpayers may qualify for deferment of Summer Taxes to February 2021. Taxpayers who meet certain eligibility requirements can file for deferment of Summer 2020 taxes to February 14, 2021. This deferment only applies to a principal residence property. Details can be found at: https://mpcityblog.com/2020/06/30/city-of-mt-pleasant-summer-property-tax-bill-information/

Past Due Utility Bill Payment Plans

If you are having difficulty paying a past due utility bill, please contact the Utility Billing Department to discuss payment plan options. The City Commission authorized staff to approve payment plans within certain parameters during this time. (989) 779-5387.

Island Park Improvement Projects

Even in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic City staff are working on the following Island Park improvement projects.

Vietnam Veterans Memorial Pedestrian Bridge leading to Pickens Field is being replaced. This includes adding a half mile trail to Island Park’s existing paved trail. Once completed, the one-mile trail will circle the island and feature outdoor fitness equipment along the route. This project, partially funded by a Michigan Department of Natural Resources Trust Fund Grant and Tribal 2% funds should be completed by the end of August. 

The Island Park Amphitheater’s decorative concrete walls, stone pillars and wood ceiling will be seal coated. During this process the amphitheater will not be available for use. This project is expected to be complete by the end of July.

Street Construction

City staff worked with construction contractors to complete three projects while traffic volumes were low. The Michigan and Pickard Street projects were completed ahead of schedule.

  • Michigan Street from Oak to Washington was reconstructed.
  • Pickard Street from Mission and Bradley was milled and overlaid.
  • The alley west of Mission, bordered by Bellows, Arnold and Gaylord Streets was reconstructed and completed on schedule.

Currently, work is occurring to reconstruct Brown Street from North Drive to Broadway, as well as the parking lot at University and Illinois.

Stay safe.

We hope some of these programs and improvement projects make this transition period a bit easier for our residents. Thank you for following the recommended guidelines from our health officials, as well as wearing a face mask when out in public. Stay safe and be well.

City of Mt. Pleasant Summer Property Tax Bill Information

Summer property tax bills, which are due July 31, 2020 were recently mailed to City of Mt. Pleasant residents.

In response to financial hardships the COVID-19 pandemic may have caused to City taxpayers, the City Commission recently approved waiving late charges which accrue on unpaid taxes. This waiver is for individual tax payers who do not escrow their tax payments with financial institutions.

In these instances, interest will be applied in accordance with State law and shall be at the rate of 1% on any unpaid balance on September 15, 2020 and the rate shall increase by 1% each month thereafter until paid.  Please allow ample time for postal delivery by September 14, 2020 and each month thereafter that the interest rate increases. Post marks are not accepted.  The City will accept partial payments until March 1, 2021 at which time the balance is delinquent and becomes payable to the County Treasurer. 

Additionally, some taxpayers may qualify for deferment of Summer Taxes to February 2021.  Taxpayers who meet the eligibility requirements listed below can file for deferment of Summer 2020 taxes to February 14, 2021.  This deferment only applies to a principal residence property. 

Taxpayers must have a household income of less than $40,000 and be one of the following:

  • 62 years of age or older, including unmarried surviving spouse of a person who was 62 years or older at the time of death.
  • Paraplegic, Hemiplegic, or Quadriplegic
  • Eligible Serviceperson, Eligible Veteran, Eligible Widow or Widower
  • Blind Person
  • Totally and Permanently Disabled

Due to COVID-19, contact less payment is recommended.  Please consider paying either by mail (320 W. Broadway Street), in the drop box at City Hall, or pay online at www.mt-pleasant.org.  If you would like a receipt, enclose your entire bill and a stamped self-addressed envelope.  You may also check your payment status online on our website. 

If you haven’t received your bill by July 6th please call 989-779-5384.

Temporary Closure of Broadway Street

In response to the Coronavirus pandemic, and the changes in current business operations, the Mt. Pleasant City Commission recently adopted a resolution temporarily authorizing outdoor business activities. These activities include waiving certain standards and fees for outdoor dining, tent and merchandise display permits. Therefore, beginning June 12 – September 30, 2020, Broadway Street between Main and University Streets will be closed for restaurant and merchant use.

To allow for proper social distancing, merchants will be able to utilize the space directly in front of their business and possibly adjacent frontage of service providers who will not be using their outdoor space. Although license fees are being waived, businesses must still apply for an outdoor dining license or merchandise display license.

Even though this street closure has the possibility of lasting until September 30, 2020, staff will review the continuation of this outdoor dining and merchandising option every two weeks.

If you have questions, please contact Michelle Sponseller, Downtown Development Director at msponseller@mt-pleasant.org or (989) 779-5348.

City of Mt. Pleasant Provides Outdoor Business Activity Options Through November 30, 2020 (Updated 8/25, 8/28/20.)

In response to the Coronavirus pandemic, and the changes in current business operations, the Mt. Pleasant City Commission recently adopted a resolution temporarily authorizing outdoor business activities. These activities include waiving certain standards and fees for outdoor dining, tent and merchandise display permits.

Please Note: This outdoor business activities extension is separate from the Broadway Street closure, which has the possibility of lasting until September 30, 2020. City staff is reviewing this street closure every two weeks to determine continuation.

The resolution adjusts City policy as follows through November 30, 2020:

  • To allow for social distancing, the use of private outdoor parking areas, lawns, or other open spaces for sales, service, or other types of work which would normally be required to occur within an enclosed building will be permitted. Certain standards will still apply.
  • Fees will be waived for Outdoor Dining and Merchandise Display licenses. These licenses permit dining or merchandise sales on adjacent sidewalks or on-street parking spaces.
  • Outdoor Dining License eligibility can be expanded beyond Downtown Mt. Pleasant. Businesses without on-site parking areas would have the opportunity to use adjacent on-street parking for dining or merchandise sales.
  • Fees will be waived for tent permits when associated with a business otherwise operating within an enclosed building. These permits can be issued beyond the normal 30-day limit.
  • Staff will have the ability to authorize Outdoor Dining and Merchandise Display Licenses to accelerate the approval process.
  • Alcohol service in outdoor areas will be subject to the satisfaction of certain requirements and approval by the Director of Public Safety.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has created many challenges for businesses large and small,” said City Planner Jacob Kain. “Recognizing that business-as-usual is not possible in many instances right now, this resolution will help support our local business community create a safe environment for their employees and customers as well as operate in accordance with federal, state, and local guidelines.”

For more details visit http://www.mt-pleasant.org/departments/division_of_community_services/downtown_development/

Mt. Pleasant Farmers’ Market Introduces New Safety Guidelines

Due to COVID-19, the Mt. Pleasant Farmers’ Market has transitioned from a community gathering shopping experience to a transaction based In-and-Out Market. The market will follow recommendations from federal, state and local health officials to assure a safe environment for both shoppers and vendors.

Please note the new guidelines for the 2020 Farmers’ Market:

  • A limited number of people will be admitted to the market at one time.
  • If you do not want to wait in the admittance line you may reserve a 20-minute shopping time in advance by visiting:  www.mt-pleasant.org/farmersmarket; or calling 989-779-5330.
  • Attendees must wear a face mask.
  • Individuals should maintain 6 ft. social distancing between each other.
  • Follow one-way foot traffic patterns. There will be a designated entrance and exit.
  • Only one person per household/party should visit the market.
  • No pets.
  • Shop quickly, with a shopping list.   
  • Do not touch products. Vendors will select and bag purchases for you.
  • Use credit/debit cards, food assistance tokens or exact change. Change will not be given.
  • Preordered and prepaid orders are eligible for Curbside Pick-Up. In the future a list of participating vendors can be found at: www.mt-pleasant.org/farmersmarket.
  • Public seating areas will not be available.
  • Wash all produce before consuming.
  • If you are not feeling well, stay home.

The 2020 Farmers’ Market is scheduled as follows:

Thursday Market (Island Park): June 4 – October 29; 7:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Saturday Market (Town Center/Downtown): June 20 – October 10; 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.