COVID-19 Updates & Resources
September 4, 2020

Dear Neighbor,

Thank you for joining me for another COVID-19 update and resource roundup for Wisconsin and in the Racine community. We are living through particularly challenging times, but I am so grateful all of you are working to stay informed, support our neighbors, and protect our community. 

To close out our week, I wanted to share key COVID-19 resources and updates that are available to our community. As always, my first priority continues to be your lives, livelihoods, and families. Please don't hesitate to reach out to share any questions, concerns, or struggles you are facing during this crisis. My staff and I will always do our best to help you wherever we can.


Because of legislative rules during campaign season, these updates will not be emailed directly to you, but they are always available on my legislative website under the E-Update tab. You can also always find regular updates on my legislative Facebook Page.

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Free Public COVID-19

Testing Next Week

Free drive-thru COVID-19 testing returns to Festival Hall next week. Testing will be available to the public from September 9th through September 11th, from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. daily.

No appointment is necessary and everyone (ages 5+) is welcome to come get tested.

Thank you to the City of Racine Health Department, Racine County, and the Wisconsin National Guard for continuing to coordinate these free opportunities in our community.

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FEMA Approves Wisconsin for

Federal Lost Wages Assistance Grant

Additional Temporary Weekly Payments for Qualified Unemployed Workers Coming in Four to Five Weeks

Wisconsin's Department of Workforce Development (DWD) recently submitted an application for the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) Lost Wages Assistance (LWA) program. On September 1st, FEMA approved Wisconsin's application.

This temporary program will allow Wisconsin to fund an additional unemployment compensation benefit of $300 per week to eligible recipients. Currently, Wisconsin's maximum weekly unemployment benefit is $370, but when combined with the new program, the maximum possible benefit in Wisconsin will be $670 per week, before taxes. DWD estimates that 140,000 out-of-work Wisconsinites are eligible for increased unemployment benefits through LWA.

According to DWD Secretary Caleb Frostman, it will take between four and five weeks to get this new program set up in the DWD computer system, and an additional two weeks to test the program before it will be rolled out to the public. LWA benefit weeks will be retroactive to August 1 once the program is available to the public.

For more information, please read Governor Evers' official announcement HERE and the FEMA press release HERE. 

NEW: CDC Announces

Federal Eviction Ban

As many of you may have heard, yesterday, the Centers for Disease Control issued a sweeping ban on evictions in the United States. There are still many questions remaining, but I wanted to share what we know:

  1. The order appears to apply to nearly all residential renters in Wisconsin. That’s very different from the previous federal moratorium, which only protected people residing in properties with federally backed financing or receiving federal assistance.
  2. Protection under this order (once it goes into effect) is not automatic. To qualify, residential tenants need to provide a form declaration with the following information:
    • That the individual used best efforts to obtain all government assistance for rent/housing.
    • That the individual (i) has an income less than $99,000 in 2020 ($198,000 for joint filers), (ii) was not required to report income in 2019, or (ii) received a CARES stimulus check.
    • That the individual is unable to pay full rent because of a substantial loss of work/income/hours, or extraordinary out-of-pocket medical expenses.
    • That the individual is making best efforts to make timely partial payments.
    • That an eviction would likely leave the individual homeless or forced into a congregate living setting because they lack another available housing option that would not increase their housing costs (i.e. there is not a cheaper rental option).


The order includes a declaration form for renters to use. Declarations do not go to the federal government - just the landlord. Individuals must make these declarations under the penalty of perjury, and each adult listed on a lease must complete the declaration. Violators of the order can face criminal penalties.

3. The moratorium will only prevent evictions due to nonpayment of rent. It does not do the following:

  • It does not relieve rent payments.
  • It does not prevent late fees/penalties.
  • It does not prevent eviction for other reasons (other lease violations).
  • It does not affect foreclosure actions.
  • It does not protect people residing in hotels/motels or similar properties.

As this ban goes into effect and we know more about what it will look like in practice in Wisconsin, I will share updates with all of you. In the meantime, this article is a very helpful guide to who should be eligible and what you will need to do to utilize the ban if you are at risk of eviction.


Gov. Evers Announces CARES Act Funding for Early Care and Education Providers, Cultural Organizations Affected by COVID-19

Today, Gov. Tony Evers announced an additional $30 million of federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) dollars are being directed toward supporting early care and education providers. The additional funds will allow the Department of Children and Families (DCF) to conduct an additional round of Child Care Counts payments.

While access to safe, affordable, quality child care has risen to the forefront for Wisconsin families as the new school year begins, many of our early care and education providers are still struggling under the impact of COVID-19. Working parents rely on child care in order to stay employed. This funding is designed to help stabilize our early care and education providers and ensure families have safe and reliable options for care. 

The Child Care Counts: COVID-19 Supplementary Payment Program funding will be distributed through two, new programs targeted at the current challenges early care and education providers are facing. Applications and program eligibility details will be available starting Sept. 9, 2020, on DCF's website, with the application window closing Sept. 18, 2020, at 11:59 p.m. Payment notifications will be issued on Sept. 26, 2020.

For more information, you can read Gov. Evers' press release HERE.

NOTE: DCF recently launched an initiative to connect families with local child care, including an interactive map that displays open, available care.

Governor Evers also announced the launch of a $5 million COVID-19 Cultural Organization Grant Program aimed at assisting Wisconsin cultural organizations that have been economically impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic through the federal CARES Act.

This program provides eligible organizations grant awards of up to $250,000 to cover pandemic-related impacts such as: lost revenue, increased workers compensation costs, cleaning and sanitization, and purchases of services or equipment to facilitate telework by employees.

This program is designed to support our nonprofit art and cultural organizations, which are a part of our culture, our history, and our education for all Wisconsinites. These organizations are also critical to our tourism economy, and protecting them will help to aid in the COVID-19 recovery. 

Eligible organizations must have a primary mission to produce, present or exhibit cultural disciplines such as music, dance, theater, literature and the visual arts, or items of environmental or scientific interest. Full program details, eligibility standards, grant application, and program contact information are available here on the DOA website. 

“This program will build-upon the important work that the Wisconsin Arts Board has already done to support the arts and humanities in our state,” said DOA Secretary Joel Brennan. “During these challenging and historic times, we need these institutions now more than ever for hope and healing.”

Grant applications are due to DOA by no later than 2 p.m. on Wed., Sept. 30, 2020. Interested applicants are encouraged to attend a program webinar on Sept. 10, 2020; details are available here and you can read more about the announcement in Gov. Evers' press release here.

 Unemployment Assistance

While I am sympathetic to the record number of applications DWD has received, I also believe that those seeking unemployment insurance should have a reasonable expectation of when they will collect their benefits. That’s why my office has stepped in to serve as another pathway to DWD. My staff has been working hard to send cases to DWD and request that they are promptly reviewed.

If you have not received your benefits and would like my office to assist you, please email with the information listed below. Once we have your information, we will send your case to DWD as soon as possible.

  • Full name (first name, last name, and middle initial)
  • Date of birth and last four digits of your Social Security Number
  • Address and phone number
  • Issue that needs to be resolved 
  • Information on your application
    • Date of your initial application
    • Did you apply for regular Unemployment Insurance (UI) or Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA)? 
    • What is the status of your claims? (i.e. pending due to review of ability to work) 
    • Have you received any communication from DWD since you submitted your application?

If you have questions about the unemployment or PUA processes, the “Frequently Asked Questions” sections on the DWD website are updated regularly with new information. You can find the FAQ pages HERE. 

 Important Links for COVID-19 Information

  • The Governor's office has launched a website with information and resources throughout the state government. You can visit it HERE.
  • The Wisconsin Department of Health Services has a website tracking COVID-19 in Wisconsin, including health-related resources from the CDC. This website is updated daily by 2:00 p.m. You can visit it HERE.
  • The City and County of Racine have launched COVID-19/Coronavirus websites with local information and resources. You can find Racine County’s website HERE, including daily updates from the Joint Information Center. The City of Racine’s website is available HERE.

This is a non-exhaustive list of resources and updates --  if you don’t find what you’re looking for here, you can find information for non-medical services online at 211 Wisconsin, dial 211 on your phone, or text your ZIP code to 898211. 


Thank you for following along and staying up-to-date with these developments. As always, please reach out if you have thoughts, concerns, or questions. You can reach us via phone at (608) 266-0634 or via email at

Wishing all of you a safe, happy, and healthy weekend.


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Greta Neubauer

State Representative

66th Assembly District