Friends and Neighbors,


Like many summers before, it is hard to believe it is nearly August.  Hopefully you have had an opportunity to get out to enjoy the sunshine and all that summer in Wisconsin has to offer.  I hope you still have upcoming plans to have fun - safely - with friends and family as the sunny days continue. 


Unlike most summers, we are still in the midst of the response and recovery to a global pandemic.  Plans have had to change.  Some things are very different now as we are all making sacrifices to adjust to a ‘new normal’ and attempt to suppress the spread of a contagious and potentially life-threatening virus.


The cloud of coronavirus we have been under for months now has been disheartening and depressing, but I remain optimistic that the people of Kenosha and across Wisconsin will continue to pull together and do what is necessary to get through this.  While some may choose not to be team players, the vast majority of people have rolled up their sleeves to help one another in a difficult time and are doing the things we need to in order to get back to the life we had before Covid-19. 


I wish you all a continued happy and safe summer.  Wear a mask, wash your hands, socially distance, avoid unnecessary interactions, and follow the guidance of public health officials.  I will continue to keep you updated on developments in our state and community via my legislative website and Facebook page.  I always welcome your feedback and opinions, so please feel free to contact me at (608) 266-0455 or




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Wisconsin COVID-19 summary


Data as of ‎07/30‎/‎2020‎

Negative Test Results


Positive Test Results





  • Of the 52,108 positive test results, 2,374 have come in Kenosha County, and 51 individuals have died.
  • For the most up-to-date data on testing, please visit the Department of Health Services website HERE.


There are no two ways about it.  Covid-19 is spreading in our community, across our state, and around the country.  Wisconsin in particular is among the states shown in red on national news coverage of recent case spikes.  While there are often many concerns with travelers here from Illinois, now Chicago has added Wisconsin to a list of states where both visitors and their residents who have come here must quarantine or potentially face a fine.  The enforcement of such a rule appears a bit murky, but this illustrates the surge in cases our state has experienced in recent weeks.  We need to take this seriously.  More info on the City of Chicago policy is HERE.


Kenosha Health Director Freiheit notes local cases are often spread through gatherings both large and small, spanning birthday parties, sleepovers, barbecues, baby showers, and other get-togethers.  Spread is further attributed to high levels of people who are asymptomatic themselves, but are infecting their friends, family, coworkers, or customers through close contact.  If you feel you may have come into contact, get tested.  Contact your doctor or find more about available community testing sites from DHS HERE.


The Wisconsin National Guard will be hosting free testing in our area from Tuesday, August 4 to Friday, August 7 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Brass Community School (6400 15th Ave).  No appointment needed.  No symptoms needed.  Drive-thru or walk-thru. Ages 5 and up. Test results sent within 7 days


Find the most current information on COVID-19 on the DHS website HERE.


State-wide Mask Requirement

Following the persistent surge in positive Covid-19 cases in our state in recent weeks, Gov. Evers has issued a new statewide emergency declaration, as well as an order that will require masks to be worn in enclosed public areas beginning August 1. 


We know that the best way to get back to normal is controlling the spread of the virus, and one of the best tools we have besides distancing is to wear a mask.  Our state joins 31 (tomorrow Vermont and Wisconsin make 33) states that currently have a mask requirement in place, in addition to numerous local orders and private implementation by our largest retailers.  This is a small gesture with a big impact that goes a long way toward protecting yourself and those around you.


That announcement, declaration and order are available here:

Learn more with a FAQ here:


Kenosha Unified Plans

This week the Kenosha Unified School District Board voted to determine how area schools will be structured for the start of the fall semester.  The board members voted to begin with an initial completely virtual opening.  Based on my discussions with our school board members, I know that they did not take this decision lightly and weighed the various practical and public health factors impacting families, teachers, and the education of our students. 


Further information about decision is HERE, as well as an opportunity for citizens to offer feedback and questions. 


Time to Reopen the Legislature

In the midst of a global pandemic, despite major issues facing the state, the Legislature has not met in over 100 days. Wisconsin residents need lawmakers to come together and get to work for them.


The Kenosha News published a piece I wrote advocating for action on the issues important to the people of our state, which you can read HERE.


Unemployment for People with Disabilities

In a major victory for people with disabilities and fairness, Governor Evers' Administration was successful in getting federal regulators to reverse course and allow Wisconsinites who receive SSDI to apply for the federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program to offset lost income during the pandemic.  Learn more HERE


PSC extends utility shut-off moratorium through September 1st

On Thursday, the Public Service Commission extended the utility shutoff moratorium for residential consumers through September 1. The previous moratorium was scheduled to expire tomorrow. 


This decision will help protect people in our state who are dealing with the continued financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. According to data compiled by the PSC, more than 71,000 households were at risk of losing electricity, gas, or water service beginning on Saturday. This is a possibility we cannot allow to become a reality. It is our duty to ensure every Wisconsin resident’s most basic needs are met during this pandemic.


Hot Car Rescue Law

Summer heat is here and with it comes the risks associated with children and pets left in hot cars. In Wisconsin, good Samaritans who find this situation and take the required initial steps are empowered to act to break into the car to rescue the occupant without facing legal liability.


I was proud to author and champion this state law in 2015. Learn more about the steps you need to take to take action here:


Rental Assistance Program

Racine Kenosha Community Action Agency is accepting applications for the Governor’s Rental Assistance Program, which provides grants of up to $3,000 to help pay for rent and security deposits. Contact Racine Kenosha Community Action Agency at (262) 657-0840 or You can learn more about the Rental Assistance Program on the Department of Administration (DOA) website HERE.


Kenosha County Kickstart and Re-opening Guidance

Kenosha County has developed a local plan to continue to slow the spread of COVID-19 while bringing back our economy.  More information about the Kenosha Kickstart is available HERE.

Additional statewide safe reopening guidelines from WEDC are available HERE.

The Department of Workforce Development has also updated work safety guidance HERE.

The CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings.  Read more HERE


National Disaster Distress Helpline

This toll-free, multilingual 24/7 phone line provides immediate crisis counseling for people experiencing emotional distress related to disasters, including COVID-19.  Stress, anxiety, and other depression-like symptoms are common during times like this.  To speak with a counselor, call:

  • 1-800-985-5990
  • 1-800-846-8517 (TTY)

Or Text: TalkWithUs to 66746 


Local Resources

Kenosha County is currently operating an online hub for information about Covid-19, resources available for local residents, and tips for staying healthy during this crisis.  Please visit their website HERE for all of the most up-to-date and local information.


All Available State and Federal Benefits

To learn more about all benefits and assistance available at this time at the state or national level, go to and  There you can answer a brief survey that can direct you to programs that may be able to help meet your individual needs. 


Resource Links

The links below are constantly being updated with new information and resources. Please continue to visit them when you have questions or concerns. The link at the bottom for Kenosha County is an extremely useful tool for folks in our area and I encourage you to visit it frequently.


If you have any questions regarding any information in this newsletter, or would like to speak with me or my staff, please feel free to contact me by phone at (608) 266-0455 or


Upcoming Events 





Phone: 608-237-9530           



Copyright © 2019 State Representative Tod Ohnstad, 65th Assembly District. All rights reserved.