News – December 15, 2020

(Wisconsin) Eleven months after the state’s first confirmed case of COVID-19, the first limited quantities of a vaccine made by Pfizer have arrived in Wisconsin. The first allocation of the Pfizer vaccine is over 49-thousand and for Moderna they have a projection of 101-thousand doses. Initial vaccination plans will include a focus on health care workers and residents of nursing homes and other associated long-term care facilities. There are an estimated 400,000 health care workers in Wisconsin and another estimated 300,000 residents in long-term care facilities. -WRN

(Juneau) The Dodge County Health Officer still encourages safe practices due to limited availability of the COVID-19 vaccine. Health Officer Abby Sauer says doses will take weeks or even months to ramp up and is recommending Dodge County residents to continue wearing masks in public, limit the size of social gatherings and to take advantage of coronavirus testing. She says even though availability will increase into 2021 the general public should not expect to receive a vaccination from their health care provider until perhaps the spring. Dodge County Health says they will continue to provide information to citizens so they can make informed decisions about the vaccine.

(Dodge County) New reports of COVID-19 cases are on the decline in Wisconsin. That’s according to data from the state Department of Health Services which reports 2,122 positive cases in their Monday update, bringing the average for the past seven days to 3,509 daily cases. One week ago, the average was 3,871 daily cases. DHS typically reports fewer confirmed COVID-19 cases on Mondays, reflecting lower weekend testing. There were 12 new deaths from COVID-19 reported yesterday, bringing the total to 4,068. Dodge County has experienced 87 deaths and 9,697 cases, a one-day increase of 23. County health officials are actively monitoring 730 people, a decrease of 174 from Friday. -WRN contributed

(Beaver Dam) The Beaver Dam School District will once again temporarily move to virtual learning for one week following the Christmas break. The school board Monday night approved a recommendation from the superintendent to suspend in-person learning at all grade levels beginning on Monday, January 4 with students returning on Monday, January 11. The decision, made in consultation with local health officials, is meant to minimize the overall spread and help maintain staffing levels, allowing for a cooling-off period, that could allow symptoms to present themselves from increased interactions over the holiday. The school board will consider expanding in-person schooling next semester, and the possibility of letting outside groups onto school grounds once again, at their January meeting.

(Watertown) A fire at a two-story apartment complex yesterday (Monday) displaced a family of five. The Watertown Fire Department received report of the blaze at 1153 Boughton Street around 2:28pm. After knocking down the flames, it was determined that the fire was cooking related and started on the stove top. Damages were estimated to be about $20-thousand-dollars. A civilian on scene and a cat were evaluated for smoke inhalation. Red Cross will be assisting the displaced family.

(Madison) At the Capitol yesterday, Wisconsin’s electors cast their 10 votes for President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris. The meeting took place just a short time after the Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled 4-3 against a Trump campaign lawsuit seeking to toss out more than 200,000 in-person absentee ballots cast in Dane and Milwaukee counties. -WRN

(Milwaukee) A popular Wisconsin-based TV program will need to find a new way to be made. Around the Corner with John McGivern” has had 116 episodes over nine seasons, including a recent program focused on Beaver Dam, but Milwaukee PBS has announced they will no longer produce new episodes.  In a statement, PBS says the pandemic impacts their ability to cover the show’s production costs, as well as being unable to continue the show in its current format due to COVID-19 health and safety issues.  Old episodes will still air, and the option has been given to John McGivern to find another production company to create new episodes.