Gov. Tony Evers’ on Thursday issued Emergency Order #28, which extends the current “Safer At Home” closure of non-essential businesses and restrictions on travel until May 26 in an attempt to continue to slow the spread of COVID-19.
Construction continues to be deemed “essential” and generally exempt from the “stay at home” requirement. All essential businesses, to the greatest extent possible, are encouraged to use technology to avoid meeting in person and engage in social distancing, including construction office and support staff.
Under the new emergency order, starting April 24, some non-essential businesses may begin running minimum basic operations, including deliveries, mailings, and curb-side pick-up. Other changes under the new emergency order include:
- Golf courses reopening.
- Public libraries reopening for curbside pickup.
- Arts and crafts stores reopening for curbside pickup of supplies to make face masks and other PPE.
- Aesthetic or optional exterior construction work done by one person may continue.
- Schools remain closed for the remainder of the 2019-20 school year.
Republican lawmakers were quick to criticize the extension of “Safer At Home” restrictions. According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald has signaled he may take legal action.
“The power to close down the entire state was never intended to rest solely in the hands of one individual,” Fitzgerald said in a statement, as reported by the Journal Sentinel. “The Senate has not been part of this conversation and we are planning to look for legal or legislative relief to truly work with the governor to make these very serious decisions that will have long-term effects on our businesses, our children, and our way of life.”
Midwest governors announce partnership to reopen regional economyIn addition, the governors of seven Midwestern states – including Gov. Evers – today announced an effort to work in close coordination to reopen the regional economy based on an ongoing analysis of at least four factors, including:
- Sustained control of the rate of new infections and hospitalizations.
- Enhanced ability to test and trace COVID-19 cases.
- Sufficient health care capacity to handle resurgence.
- Best practices for social distancing in the workplace.
The other governors participating in the partnership are Gov. JB Pritzker of Illinois, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan, Gov. Mike DeWine of Ohio, Gov. Tim Walz of Minnesota, Gov. Eric Holcomb of Indiana and Gov. Andy Beshear of Kentucky.