(Dodge County) In the latest statewide update, Dodge County registered 13 positive cases of COVID-19 up three from Tuesday. That is according to the Wisconsin Department of Health’s daily report which indicates that statewide there are 1550 positive cases, an increase of 199 from Tuesday. There were eight more deaths reported in the 2pm update with Wisconsin officially at 24. Three-hundred and ninety-eight (398) people have been hospitalized, which is 26-percent of those who have tested positive. To date, 18,819 Wisconsinites have tested negative, 241 of them are Dodge County residents. Columbia County public health officials are reporting 16 cases, up two from Tuesday. Jefferson County increased by one with 12 cases reported Wednesday. Washington County is up four from Tuesday to 44.
(Fond du Lac County) Fond du Lac County Public Health Officer Kim Mueller delivered some sobering news to the County Board Tuesday night. She told them the latest two cases to test positive were community spread. One of those persons works for a school district and the other out of the county. That brings the Fond du Lac County’s total to 24, with 18 people recovered from the virus, four being monitored, and two deaths.
(Madison) A federal judge does not believe he can postpone Wisconsin’s April 7 elections. But he clearly wishes he could. The Journal Sentinel reports that U.S. District Judge William Conley said Wednesday that holding the election is “a really a bad public policy idea and they should stop it,” because of the risks associated with COVID-19. The “they” Conley was referring to: Democratic Governor Tony Evers and Republican leaders in the legislature, who Conley said had abdicated their responsibilities and refused to “step up” during a crisis. In a statement, Evers said if he could change the election on his own he would have but cannot without violating state law. He adds that he has asked the legislature to ensure a fair and safe election. Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald said not once has the governor suggested moving the election date and that the Juneau Republican continues to support holding the election on April 7th.
(Madison) Some older voters are apparently confused about one of the requirements to request an absentee ballot for next Tuesday’s election. That’s according to the Madison City’s Clerk’s office, which said in a tweet Wednesday that it is unable to process over 1,100 absentee requests because they do not have the voter’s ID on file. About half are senior citizens who sent selfies, rather than pictures of their photo ID. Today (Thursday) is the last day to request an absentee mail-in ballot for the spring election. The Madison clerk’s office says if you know a senior staying safe at home, please contact them to ask whether they need help sending ID to their clerk.
(Madison) The Wisconsin legislature is preparing for an extraordinary session, to vote on a COVID-19 assistance package for the state. Assembly Speaker Robin Vos says specifics will depend on how much federal assistance the state gets, and where that money can go. Vos did not provide a timeline during a conference call with reporters Wednesday. Governor Evers has proposed a state package of around 700 million dollars, and this week urged lawmakers to act “as soon as possible.”
(Madison) This month’s Marquette Law School Poll opened up with some interesting information on how people are handling the COVID-19 pandemic. Poll director Charles Franklin says more and more Wisconsinites are taking the response seriously as the situation became clearer. Respondents also seem to have a lot of trust in how the state is handling the response. 76 percent approve of the job Tony Evers is doing.
(Beaver Dam) Beaver Dam Lake Days has been cancelled for this year. The Lake Days committee made that announcement yesterday (Wed) morning on their website. The committee says (quote) “with the uncertainty of the COVID-19 crisis, the unknown time frame of mandatory closings, and the necessary time and energy that will eventually be spent on recovery, it is with great sadness we have decided to suspend Lake Days” until next year. Organizers say their local business partners are critical to their success, and as a community-based group they cannot in good conscience go ahead with fundraising this year. Their wish instead is that everyone focuses on helping their fellow citizens in order to strengthen the community once the pandemic passes. The committee mentioned the local restaurants, taverns, retail stores and employees that will be feeling the long-term effects of the pandemic, and they ask when they able to re-open their small businesses, the public “support them wholeheartedly.”
(Juneau) Voters will see a contested race for the District 31 County Board seat when they go to the polls next Tuesday. Incumbent Kevin Burnett who is serving his first term on the county board is being challenged by Mayville police officer Scott Petrack. The District 31 seat includes the 11th and 13th wards in the city of Beaver Dam. You can listen to interviews with both candidates on DailyDodge.com.
(Beaver Dam) A former alderperson is seeking to unseat a three-term incumbent on the Beaver Dam Common Council. Mike Wissell is touting his five years of experience on the council in saying he wants to again guide the city’s day-to-day operations and its future. Alderwoman Mary Morgan, who was first elected in 2014, says she will continue to listen to her constituents and weigh the options to the best of her ability before taking action. You can hear our interviews with both candidates on DailyDodge.com, they can be found under the audio tab or with this news story.
(Waupun) Both candidates for Waupun mayor recently joined WBEV’s Community Comment. Incumbent Julie Nickel, who has been in office since 2016, says growing their workforce is a priority if reelected. She says she plans to engage the city and future students in technical career educational career opportunities. Jay Graff (groff), who last ran for mayor in 2012, is challenging Nickel for her seat. He says his passion and ability to listen will help set a better course for Waupun. Graff adds that he will prioritize buying local first. You can listen to our interview with both candidates on DailyDodge.com.
(Mayville) “There is a time and season for everything…my time as your hometown newspaper owner and publisher has come to an end.” Those words were published yesterday (Wednesday) by Andrew Johnson as he announced a transfer of ownership of the Dodge County Pionier. The Mayville-based paper announced that Wisconsin Free Press – which includes the Pionier along with the Campbellsport News and Kewaskum Statesmen – has merged with Multi Media Channels.