News – February 4, 2021

(Wisconsin) The state Assembly is kicking the Republican effort to end a statewide mask mandate back to the Senate. Assembly Speaker Robin Vos said that chamber will adopt a new amendment to a COVID-19 relief bill to “correct the error” the Senate made, trying to address consequences of overturning Democratic Governor Tony Evers’ public health emergency order and mask mandate. The Assembly will be on the floor at 10am today (Thursday). -WRN

(Wisconsin) The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports Wisconsin has passed some other states in getting its residents their first COVID-19 vaccination. Wisconsin is ranked 29th, up from 45th last week – still lagging when it comes to getting people their second shot. Wisconsin is 44th among the states when it comes to the percentage of its people who have received both shots.

(Juneau) Dodge County citizens in the second phase of the COVID-19 vaccination rollout plan may have to wait several weeks to get their shot. That according to the Dodge County Health Department, who say in their weekly update that due to the availability of the vaccine those who are waitlisted in group 1B can expect a call in the next six weeks. Health officials say they are no longer taking requests or interest forms until further notice but note area hospitals are requesting vaccines so also check our local healthcare provider about scheduling. Just over 63-hundred Dodge County residents have been vaccinated through the end of January.

(Waupun) Agnesian Healthcare is currently reporting an adequate supply of the COVID-19 vaccine but is asking the public to be patient as they work to vaccinate eligible community members. The healthcare provider has been planning and implementing clinics in Waupun, Fond du Lac and Ripon since the state health department approved those aged 65-and-older to begin receiving the vaccine. They have also been working collaboratively with its public health department partners and the state to determine next steps. For information about registering for a vaccination shot through Agnesian Healthcare, visit DailyDodge.com.

(Dodge County) Wisconsin health officials are reporting 1,177 positive coronavirus cases in Wednesday’s daily update. State health officials recorded 14 deaths bringing that total to 5,951. Dodge County has experienced 147 deaths and 11,185 cases, a one-day increase of 11 positive tests. Columbia County reported two deaths.

(Wisconsin) Governor Tony Evers has announced his proposed two-year state budget which will include language aimed at limiting prescription drug costs in Wisconsin. The Democratic governor wants a $50-dollar cap on copays for insulin, and elimination of drug copays in the BadgerCare program. Evers’ budget would also create a new board with authority to establish drug spending targets for public sector entities and set price limits, allow the state to import prescription drugs, and create a new state-local entity to leverage purchasing power and reduce costs. Evers is to introduce his budget plan February 16th. -WRN

(Jefferson County) The Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty has filed a lawsuit against the state Department of Natural Resources. WILL deputy counsel Anthony LoCoco said the agency needs to hold a gray wolf hunting or trapping season this winter. The grey wolf was officially removed from the Endangered Species List, effective January 4. Last week, the state Natural Resources took no action on an immediate hunt. The suit filed in Jefferson County Circuit Court on behalf of Hunter Nation Inc., a Kansas-based hunting advocacy group, claims the DNR violated state law and the state constitution’s guarantee of a right to hunt. A DNR spokesperson had no comment.  -WRN

(Wisconsin) Former employees of the closed Shopko retail chain should soon begin receiving severance checks. The law firm handling the process says the checks will be mailed on or before February 12th. A fund of $12-million-dollars will be shared among about four-thousand former workers at the chain. Shopko closed the last of its stores in June 2019.  The Ashwaubenon-based retailers had filed for bankruptcy the previous January. -WRN

(Wisconsin) Governor Evers granted 37 new pardons Wednesday.  They were recommended during the last two Pardon Advisory Board, consisting of people who have completed their sentence and wish to pursue careers that require the lifting of conviction-related restrictions.  To date, Governor Evers has granted 144 pardons.

(Mount Pleasant) A new lawsuit against Foxconn alleges the electronics manufacturer violated terms of its contract in Wisconsin.  Hintz Real Estate Development Co. claims Foxconn breached its contract by failing to construct a Generation 10.5 LCD manufacturing facility.  Foxconn declined to comment on the lawsuit, saying it “continues to fulfill its financial obligations under the local development agreement.” -WRN

(Wisconsin) Wisconsin recently had the first case of a “swine influenza virus” variant in the country.  That person, who is under 18 and lives on a farm with pigs, has recovered.  Overall, flu cases remain very low in Wisconsin…with people getting the flu shot pacing higher than at this time last year.

(Wisconsin) We could know today (Thursday), how Wisconsin Republicans in Congress feel about colleague Marjory Taylor Greene. The Democratic-run House Rules Committee voted yesterday to advance a measure stripping the Georgia Republican of her committee assignments, setting up a floor vote today. Greene has embraced the QAnon conspiracy and social media postings have surfaced in which she claims school shootings were staged by gun-control advocates. Sixth District Congressman Glenn Grothman serves on two committees with Green, and is the only member of Wisconsin’s delegation on either. -WRN