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April 3, 2020


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Support Local Business!

Last Friday, I stopped by the Red Room in Dodgeville to pick up lunch. Make sure to support your favorite local spots by ordering delivery or takeout! I've included more ways you can help your community during the COVID-19 pandemic below.

Working to Serve You

One of my favorite parts of being your representative is serving as your resource in state government and listening and responding to your input and concerns. There is no doubt, Wisconsinites are facing difficult and uncertain times due to the Coronavirus outbreak. Since my last update to you, my office received over 100 constituent contacts, relating to both the pandemic and other happenings in the 51st Assembly District. It is my priority that every person that contacts my office receives a timely response, especially as the situation we are in continues to develop at a rapid pace.

If you have questions or need assistance with anything, I hope you will not hesitate to reach out to my office. You can email me at or call my office at (608) 266-7502. To keep everyone informed, my office will continue to send these newsletters that provide an overview of important developments at the state and local level. Many state and federal departments are maintaining webpages with FAQs related to the ongoing situation. I've included links to these below. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to serve you in the state legislature.




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There is Still Time to Request an Absentee Ballot!

On Thursday, a federal judge made changes to the upcoming April 7th elections. Changes include that voters will be given until Friday, April 3rd at 5:00 PM to request an absentee ballot, voters will have until April 13th at 4:00PM to return absentee ballots to their local clerks, and absentee ballots will no longer require a witness signature.


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Coronavirus Update


As of April 2, The Wisconsin Department of Health Services has received 20,317 negative test results and 1,730 positive test results for COVID-19. Of those who tested positive for the virus, 461 (27%) were hospitalized. The most up-to-date testing information can be found here.

Rumor Control:

  • The Federal Emergency Management Agency has created the Coronavirus Rumor Control page to help distinguish between rumors and facts.

State Updates:

  • The Democratic National Convention scheduled to take place in Milwaukee has been moved from July 13 to August 17.
  • Members of the Wisconsin National Guard will serve at polling locations for the April 7th election. Guardsmen will also help staff three self-isolation facilities in Madison and Milwaukee.
  • The latest Marquette Poll shows that Wisconsin residents largely support the closure of schools and businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Legislative leaders have signaled their support for eliminating the one-week waiting period currently in place before an individual may collect unemployment benefits. Click here to view the press conference with legislative leadership.
  • Early this week, Governor Evers sent a letter to FEMA requesting that the president issue a major disaster declaration for the state of Wisconsin which would allow access to additional resources.
  • On Monday, Governor Evers announced a new public-private partnership aimed at expanding Wisconsin’s testing capacity for COVID-19. Organizations include Exact Sciences, Marshfield Clinic Health System, Promega, UW Health, and Wisconsin Clinical Lab Network. Previously, a bulk of the state’s testing had been completed by the Wisconsin State Lab of Hygiene and the Milwaukee Public Health Lab.

Federal Updates:

  • The White House Coronavirus Task Force, FEMA, HHS, and others are working with state, local, tribal, and territorial governments to execute a whole of American response to fight the COVID-19 pandemic and protect the public. Click here to view briefing points related to the federal coronavirus response.
  • The nation’s “Slow the Spread” campaign has been extended until April 30. This initiative requires that social distancing be practiced and gatherings of more than 10 people are cancelled or postponed.
  • President Trump signed the CARES act into law allocating $2 trillion to COVID-19 response efforts. Click here to view a summary of the legislation.
  • FEMA is working to expedite movement of critical supplies to various locations across the U.S. Additional details can be found by clicking the federal briefing link at the top of this section.
  • Ford Motor Company and GE Healthcare plan to produce 50,000 ventilators within the next 100 days. General Motors is also working to produce critical care ventilators.


  • UW-Madison has suspended all in-person classes for the upcoming summer term.

  •  Blackhawk Technical College is postponing the Student Awards Ceremony planned for April 18, the GED Graduation Program (May 14) and the Commencement Ceremony (May 16). Planning is underway to re-schedule these events.

  • There are options for children who participate in the Child Nutrition Program and may be facing food insecurity during this time. While schools are not required to provide meals during a dismissal, they are encouraged to ensure that needs are met. Check with your local school district for information regarding meals during the school closure.

Small Business Owners:

  • If you believe your business is performing essential functions and is not exempted under the "Safer at Home" order, please click here to request an exemption.
  • The U.S. Department of the Treasury and the IRS released information to help small and medium sized businesses navigate refundable tax credits available to them.

  •  The Department of Revenue has announced it is allowing small businesses to request an extension on sales tax payments due on March 31.


  • The Department of Workforce Development reports that initial applications for unemployment insurance as of Thursday for the week of March 29, 2020 have reached 85,434. Comparable claims last year were 4,306. This data can be found here.

  • Due to the unprecedented number of unemployment applications, DWD has asked that those needing to file for unemployment do so through the department’s website.

  • Those seeking unemployment are encouraged to register on This website continues to be updated with new job postings.

  • The Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection announced that it has sent a letter to the federal government requesting that they purchase surplus commodities for use at food banks, nutrition assistance programs, and other services. This announcement comes after the DNR took steps last week to allow small and medium farmers to dispose of unused milk.

Child Care:

  • The Department of Children and Families has launched a new web form that allows essential employees to request assistance with child care services.

Best Practices:

The Centers for Disease Control have posted the following tips to protect yourself:

  • Wash your hands and avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Stay home if you are sick
  • Cover coughs and sneezes
  • Wear a facemask if you are sick
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily

More information on coronavirus from the CDC can be found here

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How You Can Help

  • Support Local Business - Do your part to make sure your favorite spots are around when we get through this. Many restaurants are offering generous discounts and providing pick up and delivery service. Call your favorite spot to see what they are offering and tip a little more than usual as restaurants are serving fewer people. If you prefer to dine in, consider purchasing a gift card for later use. The Wisconsin Restaurant Association is compiling a list of restaurants remaining open for pick up and delivery. If you are a restaurant owner or you know of a restaurant offering these services, feel free to add their information.


  • Give Blood - The American Red Cross reports that they are facing a severe blood shortage due to an unprecedented number of blood drive cancellations during the coronavirus outbreak. Click here to learn more about how you can donate and locate a blood drive taking place in our area.


  • Give to Food Banks and Delivery Services - Organizations like Feeding America and Meals on Wheels are in need of donations and volunteers to provide food to those in need during this difficult time. Charity Navigator has also compiled a list of trustworthy charities in need of resources. Click here for a list of soup kitchens and food pantries in our area.


  • Volunteer - Volunteers are needed to staff shelters and provide food delivery services throughout the state. United Way Wisconsin has provided a dashboard to connect volunteers with organizations looking for help. Click here to view.


  • Sign Up to Work at Your Local Polling Place - Many poll workers across Wisconsin are unable to serve due to age or health concerns from the Coronavirus pandemic. Many positions require very little or no training. You can find information here on how to sign up to work at your local polling location.

Stay Well and Be Safe!