News – December 29, 2020

(Washington DC) Wisconsin’s Democrats all voted in favor of the CASH Act, which would boost the amount of money that people receive under the new stimulus bill to two thousand dollars ($2000). All of Wisconsin’s Republicans voted no, but enough Republicans voted in favor as well to push the measure to the Senate. -WRN

(Beaver Dam) Dodge County’s domestic violence shelter has seen increased need in 2020. Ashley Welak – the Executive Director of PAVE, Protect, Advocate, Validate and Educate – says their organization has served 1,272 victims and survivors through the end of November. The non-profit has provided 1,891 nights of shelter and has answered 1,596 crises calls. Welak says through November, PAVE had exceeded the number of calls to their crises line by roughly 300 compared to last year. Anyone who needs PAVE’s services can call toll free or text them, you will find contact information with this news story at

(Columbus) The Wisconsin National Guard will be hosting three COVID-19 testing sites in the city of Columbus over the next three months. The Columbia County Public Health Department requested the Guard’s assistance in providing the free testing at Columbus Water and Light beginning next Tuesday, January 5.  Appointments are not necessary but, in an effort to save time, people are encouraged to register online no sooner than 24 hours prior. Additional dates are scheduled on February 2 and March 2, all from noon to 6pm.

(Dodge County) Wisconsin health officials are reporting 1,335 positive coronavirus cases in Monday’s daily update. There are 28,912 active cases in the state, a decrease of 879 from Sunday. State health officials recorded 19 deaths bringing that total to 4,711. Dodge County reported one death Monday for a total of 115 deaths and 10,292, a one-day increase of 13 positive tests. Additional deaths were reported in Washington and Fond du Lac counties on Monday.

(Wisconsin) State health officials report that – as of Sunday – nearly 130-thousand doses of Pfizer and almost 136,000 doses of Moderna COVID-19 vaccine have been allocated to Wisconsin. Of that 39,500 total doses of vaccine have been administered and reported to the Wisconsin Immunization Registry, including 35,600 doses of Pfizer and 3,900 doses of Moderna.

(Fond du Lac) Several municipal offices have been closed during the pandemic, including Beaver Dam City Hall, but not everywhere. Fond du Lac County and the City of Fond du Lac have been able to keep their offices open. County Executive Al Buechel says they felt they could protect their employees and the public while still conducting everyday business. Buechel says they are using masks, plexiglass, social distancing, hand sanitizer and other means recommended for protection from COVID-19. They even purchased an ultra-violet device that they can use to go through a room to kill viruses.

(Madison) Governor Tony Evers says he has not made up his mind yet about running for a second term. Evers tells the Associated Press he does not have any regrets about his second year in office, but it’s been difficult not being able to enact mitigation orders during the pandemic. He’s referring to the state Supreme Court’s ruling ending his “Safer at Home” order. The governor was harshly criticized when his health secretary enacted the order in March, ordering bars, restaurants and schools to close while urging state residents to stay home. -WRN

(Madison) Governor Evers says he hopes his next state budget proposal will include solutions for criminal justice disparities. Evers called a special session last August to consider several police reforms, but the Republican-controlled Legislature gaveled the session out in a matter of seconds. Evers had asked for new laws banning chokeholds, creating use-of-force standards for police, and creating grants to find ways to prevent violence. Evers did not include specifics about his plans during a year-end interview with the Associated Press. -WRN

(Madison) The COVID relief package extends the federal moratorium on evictions. That does not mean help for those who cannot pay their rent is coming soon. One way landlords are getting around the moratorium is to refuse to sign a non-paying tenant to a new lease when the current one runs out. Many of those property owners are caught in the middle, owing to the bank but not able to pay when tenants cannot pay the rent. -WRN

(Milwaukee) A marijuana-themed restaurant is planning to open its doors in Milwaukee next year. Cheba Hut already has a store in Madison, and the owners of the chain want to open up a new location on the East Side close to the UW-Milwaukee campus. The restaurant features colorfully named toasted subs and other munchies that are supposed to compliment… other activities. The Madison location opened up in 2013, and the new Milwaukee location is set to open up in May of next year. -WRN