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(608) 266-5780 | State Capitol, Room 307 West, P.O. Box 8953, Madison, WI 53708 |


The sense of community in the La Crosse area always amazes me. It is so important that we continue to support each other during these trying times. 

Support local businesses:

  • Shop locally online
  • Order takeout or delivery
  • Donate to local charities
  • Tip service workers extra
  • Continue payment for memberships
  • Buy gift cards for later use
  • Ask a business owner what you can do to help

For an updated list of La Crosse area shops and restaurants that continue to provide services, visit News8000 or Be Local La Crosse



State Capitol
Room 307 West
P.O. Box 8953
Madison, WI 53708

(608) 266-5780

Toll Free:
(888) 534-0095


Friends and Neighbors,

Day to day life has changed, the past couple weeks have been filled with constant updates as the federal, state, and local government have worked to flatten the curve of infection and control the spread of COVID-19. I hope you have remained well, practiced social distancing, and checked in virtually with loved ones and neighbors. I am grateful that people in Wisconsin have stepped up to protect themselves and our community.  Like so many of you I am working from home and am in contact with fellow legislators, Governor Evers and his cabinet, my staff in Madison, and people in the 95th

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Please continue reading for updates on the state’s response to COVID-19, along with articles regarding the upcoming Election Day, transportation funding, flooding legislation, and the 2020 Census.

As always, please let me know if you have any questions, comments, or concerns. You can always contact my office by calling (608) 266-5780 or emailing me at Rep.Billings@legis.wi.gov

Best Wishes, 

Jill Billings
State Representative 
95th Assembly District

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COVID-19 Update

My office has been closely following COVID-19 updates and responding to concerns from the community. We will be continually posting frequent updates and helpful information on the Rep. Jill Billings Facebook page. As this situation continues to evolve, I encourage you to also visit the following resources for more information. It is important to have good information from reliable sources. For comprehensive up-to-date information from all state agencies, you can visit the Wisconsin COVID-19 Website. Also, the following resources provide more health-specific information at the local, state, and federal level. 

La Crosse County Health Department
Wisconsin Department of Health Services
Center for Disease Control and Prevention

Here are a few updates from the Department of Workforce Development, Department of Transportation, Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, and Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation. As mentioned above, similar updates will be provided on the Rep. Jill Billings Facebook page. 

Department of Workforce Development (DWD)

The Department of Workforce Development encourages those who are out of work through no fault of their own to apply for unemployment insurance through the DWD website. The DWD prepared a specific FAQ page addressing unemployment insurance benefits during this time.

Governor Evers issued Emergency Order #7 that waived work search requirements for unemployment insurance benefits for workers impacted by COVID-19. Further, Governor Evers is requesting the State Legislature to act quickly and repeal the one week waiting period for unemployment insurance benefits. Lastly, for those continuing the search for work, many Job Centers in Wisconsin have taken precautions so they can remain open and safely serve their communities.

 The Department of Transportation (DOT)

All Wisconsin Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) offices were closed Friday, March 20 to deep clean and reconfigure public spaces to adhere to social distancing guidelines. DMV service centers will reopen Monday, March 23, on an appointment only basis, to issue new driver licenses and identification cards. Many other vehicle-related tasks can be resolved using the DMV’s online services.

Further, driver licenses and commercial drive licenses (CDLs) that expire during this public health emergency will be automatically extended for 60 days. Also, all driver skills test are cancelled until further notice. Lastly, the Department of Transportation understands the importance of rest areas for the safety of drivers. Rest areas will remain open and there will be increased efforts to maintain cleanliness of these facilities.

The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP)

DATCP is encouraging people to call the Consumer Protection Hotline to report price gouging, scams, or any other consumer protection-related issues. The hotline can be reached toll-free at (800) 422-7128 or by email: DATCPHotline@wisconsin.gov.

Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) 

WEDC recently announced two programs to provide assistance to small businesses. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) provides a number of financial assistance programs designed to meet the needs of small businesses. Recently the federal government announced the release of $50 billion dollars for SBA loans. The loans will provide up to $2 million of working capital to small businesses, have interest rates that are between 2-3%, are for 15-20 year terms, and are for businesses that employ less than 500 people. For more information about this loan program, please visit the SBA Resource web page. 

WEDC also created the Small Business 20/20 (SB20/20) Program to help mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on small businesses and micro-enterprises in Wisconsin. SB20/20 will provide grants of up to $20,000 to targeted businesses with no more than 20 employees to cover rent and to meet payroll expenses, including paid leave (including sick, family and other leave related to COVID-19). The SB20/20 program has the capacity to award a total of $5 million to small businesses in Wisconsin. 

For additional resources available to Wisconsin businesses from WEDC and other local, state, and federal agencies, please visit COVID-19 Business Resources

Be Sure to Make Your Voice Heard on Election Day—April 7, 2020

The Spring Election Day is quickly approaching but there is still plenty of time to be sure your vote counts. To practice social distancing requirements, I’m encouraging people to vote by mail. If you are a registered Wisconsin voter, you can easily request a mailed absentee ballot here. All absentee ballots must be requested by April 2, 2020 and returned to your municipal clerk no later than 8:00pm on April 7, 2020.

At this time, you can also vote early at your local municipal clerk’s office. For residents of the City of La Crosse, Town of Shelby, and Town of Campbell, voting absentee begins on Monday, March 23 and ends on Friday, April 3. Due to evolving social distancing measures, I do suggest calling ahead to your municipal clerk to ensure they are still allowing in-person absentee. For more information about times and locations, contact your local municipal clerk’s office. Further, the MyVote website is a great resource to search your polling location, preview your ballot, and much more.



La Crosse to Receive Over $1 Million from the Multimodal Local Supplement

Recently, Governor Evers announced that 152 Wisconsin communities will receive grant awards from the Multimodal Local Supplement (MLS), which is a one-time $75 million funding program for local transportation projects. Statewide, 84 towns, 34 cities and villages, and 34 counties will receive funding from the program.

La Crosse received funding for two transportation projects. The City of La Crosse will receive $1 million in funding for a project on Palace and Larson Street, and the County of La Crosse will receive almost $315,000 for bridge repairs on County Highway YY, I, and T. Governor Evers prioritized infrastructure needs during the 2019-2021 budget cycle and funding for these projects is a result of that work. I will continue to advocate for additional funding for La Crosse area transportation projects during the next budget cycle.



Flood Prevention and Resilience Plan Introduced by Legislators and Governor Evers

In recent years, the La Crosse area has been hit hard by high water levels along the Mississippi River and unceasing rainfalls leading to destructive flooding. I co-sponsored the Flood Prevention and Resilience Plan because of La Crosse’s ongoing flooding issues. I know we can do more to prevent the destruction of infrastructure during floods, improve community readiness, and implement more-effective recovery programs. 

The Flood Prevention and Resilience Plan would require the Department of Transportation (DOT) to administer a flood mitigation program, increase funding to the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) for municipal flood control, increase aid for certain highway projects, provide tax relief for those purchasing flood insurance, and much more.



Make Sure You Get Counted During the 2020 Census

Households across the United States began receiving invitations to respond to the 2020 Census in mid-March. The census provides critical data that lawmakers, business owners, teachers, and many others use to provide daily services, products, and support local communities. The data is also used to redraw electoral districts and inform federal funding every year, including the distribution of more than $675 billion in federal funds to schools, hospitals, roads, public works and other vital programs.

The census can now be easily completed online, by phone, or by mail. Our communities are greatly impacted by the results, so please take a moment and get counted. The United States Census 2020 is a great resource for more information about the decennial census.



Since I’ve been practicing social distancing and working from home, I don’t have photos of my usual activities in Madison and La Crosse. I appreciate the greetings and quick conversations (from a distance of 6 feet) with local folks at the La Crosse Marsh.

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