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March 27, 2020

 

  
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Coronavirus Update

Testing:

As of March 26, The Wisconsin Department of Health Services has received 11583 negative test results and 707 positive test results for COVID-19. 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:

  • Governor Evers issued a "Safer at Home" order requiring Wisconsinites to stay home as much as possible and non-essential businesses and operations to cease. The order began at 8:00AM on Wednesday, March 25th and is scheduled to end on Friday, April 24th. Click here for FAQs related to this order.
  • The Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection has set up a page to collect reports of price gouging. Click here to file a complaint.
  • Governor Evers has issued an executive order declaring that minor work permits are not required during the public health emergency. Instead, employers are required to collect certain information from the minor before hiring. The order can be viewed here.
  • Governor Evers announced a new initiative in which the state can purchase or accept donated personal protective equipment.
  • The Department of Natural Resources has announced that admission fees are being waived for Wisconsin State Parks and Trails.
  • The Department of Children and Families is working to connect health care and essential workers with childcare. View the release here.
  • Following the federal announcement, Wisconsin has announced that the state income tax filing deadline will be pushed back to July 15th.
  • The Department of Natural Resources has suspended burning permits at this time. Click here for more information.
  • The Wisconsin State Capitol Building has been closed to the public until further notice.

Federal Updates:

  • The U.S. Senate has reached an agreement on a $2 trillion economic stimulus package related to COVID-19. A few highlights:
    •  $150 billion for a Coronavirus Relief Fund for state, local, and tribal governments. Estimates show that Wisconsin will receive approximately 2.26 billion.
    • $30 billion for an Education Stabilization Fund
    • $45 billion for a Disaster Relief Fund
    • $500 billion lending fund for businesses, cities, and states
    • $1,200 direct payment to Americans making less than $75,000 and $500 per child younger than age 17. Payments are expected to go out by April 6.
    • The National Conference of State Legislatures has put together a summary of the legislation. Click here to view.
  • The President of the International Olympic Committee and the Prime Minister of Japan announced that the 2020 Olympic games will be postponed.
  • The USDA has implemented a variety of immediate measures to help rural residents, businesses, and communities affected by COVID-19. A list of these measures can be found here.

Unemployment:

  • The Department of Workforce Development (DWD) has provided answers to common questions regarding unemployment insurance. Click here to visit the page.

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 Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation has created a page devoted to keeping small business owners up to date on resources available to them.

Education:

  • UW-Platteville has announced that commencement ceremonies have been postponed at all three campuses. In addition, UW System has announced that prorated room, board, and meal plan refunds will be offered to those who left campuses due to COVID-19.
  • 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.

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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Thank you!

Thank you to all our Medical Professionals, Fire Departments, and EMT's for your work on the front lines during the COVID-19 pandemic. Your service and sacrifice during this time does not go unnoticed!

   
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Request Your Absentee Ballot

There is still time to register to vote online and request your absentee ballot! The deadline to request your absentee ballot for the April 7th spring election is Thursday, April 2. Last Friday, a federal judge extended the deadline for Wisconsin residents to register online to Monday, March 30.

All information on early voting, absentee voting, registration, and polling locations can be found at myvote.wi.gov.

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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.
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Remember to Fill Out Your Census

April 1st is Census Day. Since it's inception in 1790, The 2020 Census will mark the 24th time that the country has conducted a count of the population. Lawmakers use critical data provided by the Census to allocate billons of dollars in federal funding for hospitals, fire departments, schools, roads, and many other resources based on census data. The results also determine the number seats each state will have in the U.S. House of Representatives.