OAKLAND TOGETHER: A message from Dave Coulter, Oakland County Executive


May 19, 2021

Bi-Weekly County Executive Newsletter

Dear Friends,

Tonight, you’ll be able to see me talk about the state of Oakland County and what we’ve gone through in the past year.


It’s not a typical State of the County address, however. Last year, we were at the Strand Theater in Pontiac with an audience of 800 people. This year, I’m alone on an empty stage at the Baldwin Theater in Royal Oak, which has been closed for the past 14 months because of the coronavirus pandemic.


It’s an appropriate spot to reflect on how difficult the past year has been, but it’s even more inspirational location to illustrate how resilient Oakland County’s people, employees and businesses have been since the first case was reported on March 10, 2020.


It’s that resiliency that is going to carry us through to not only survive the pandemic, but thrive as we move forward toward building our future.


Toward that end, we’re expecting the first down payment soon from the federal American Recovery Plan. A total of $244 million is coming to Oakland County and we expect about half of that before the end of the month.


There’s a distinct difference between the $219 million in federal money we received last year through the federal CARES act and this new funding through the ARP. I like to think of it as treating an acute problem with CARES money, including immediate needs like testing and vaccinations, grant money for businesses, non-profits and our CVTs, schools and residents to need their immediate needs.


The ARP money, on the other hand, will treat chronic problems that linger, not only from the pandemic but from issues that arose before the virus hit our borders.


We plan to use some of this money to pay for remaining immediate needs, like getting the rest of our residents vaccinated. But the vast majority of the money coming in will be used for key investments and transformational projects.


With the help of the reconvened Economic Recovery Task Force of key community leaders and my partners in county government, we’re making plans that will build on Oakland County’s strengths, address our disparities and prepare us for a strong future.


We will work with our partners in local, regional and state governments to leverage the money on projects that will have the most impact. We’ll help our businesses and residents get back on their feet with resources to help them emerge from a year like no other.


And we’ll look at problems we knew we had before the virus hit: the lack of affordable childcare as well as housing and food insecurities; mental health services; and infrastructure projects that will be transformational.


And we’ll build on the progress we’ve already made on some of our key priorities: affordable and accessible health care and connecting our residents with the education the need to be successful and get good paying jobs.


You’ll hear all about that tonight. So I hope you’re tune in at 7 p.m. The speech will run on YouTube, the county’s Facebook page and on the county’s State of the County website. #OCSOTC2021

With gratitude,


Dave Coulter

Oakland County Executive


COVID-19 by the numbers

  • Vaccination rates continue to rise with 62.6% of Oakland residents age 16 and up having at least one dose
  • Vaccination rates for residents 12 and older with at least one dose: 59.1%
  • 7% of county seniors have gotten at least one dose
  • Doses distributed in Oakland County: 1,142,455
  • Cases: 100,203
  • Deaths: 2,114

Oakland looks to expand into automated vehicles technology

Oakland County has contracted with former Michigan Department of Transportation Director Kirk Steudle to help the county expand and attract businesses in the emerging automated vehicle technology industries.


Steudle, the former president and CEO of the American Center for Mobility, will work with Oakland County, Automation Alley and leaders in the industry to help build a mobility plan that will encourage innovation and diversification into that specialized field.


Health 360 opens second clinic

Oakland County, in partnership with Honor Community Health and the Oakland Livingston Human Services Agency opened a second clinic at the county’s campus in Pontiac last week to provide affordable health care and referral services to the residents in the north end of the county.


This second office joins the county’s clinic in Southfield, that since it opened last August, has served 1,100 county residents.


Honor Health will provide a broad range of primary, behavioral health and dental care to residents on Mondays and Wednesday at the Pontiac clinic and Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays in Southfield.


And with OLHSA on site, the clinic will be able to provide wraparound services, assisting residents with housing and food insecurities and signing up for health insurance.


The program is geared toward filling a major health care gap for the 227,000 uninsured or underinsured residents of Oakland County.

Oakland to join United Way’s 21-Day Equity Challenge

Furthering the county’s mission of fostering a welcoming, diverse and inclusive workplace, Oakland County will participate in the United Way for Southeastern Michigan’s 21-day Equity Challenge, beginning on May 21.


The challenge, which runs through June 18, is designed to increase the understanding of racism, sexism and other forms of inequity that are prevalent in society and workplaces across the region. Oakland County’s participation is part of our commitment to confronting these issues and promoting cultural sensitivity and understanding among all our employees.


County employees can volunteer to receive daily e-mail prompts that will explore a variety of topics, including: personal racial and social identity; bias and privilege; the history of race relations in Metro Detroit; racism and inequity in housing, health care, child care and education; gender, LGBTQIA and disability inequity; and how to be a better ally and develop racial equity.


Anyone can sign up for the challenge at UnitedWaySEM.org/EquityChallenge