Hamilton Political Tidbits – April 27, 2020

Hamilton Political Tidbits - April 27, 2020
Hamilton Consulting Group
 April 27, 2020
Wisconsin political news for clients and colleagues.

Gov. Evers announced the extension of Wisconsin's Safer at Home Order to May 26. Now, the administration, Legislature, and business groups are looking at how to safely reopen Wisconsin's economy. The Legislature has filed a lawsuit challenging the administration's authority to extend Safer at Home. Meanwhile, Gov. Evers has laid out a framework for reopening. Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce has also released their own reopening plan. Also in this edition of Hamilton Political Tidbits: 
If you have any additional questions, please contact a member of the Hamilton Consulting team

Gov. Evers Releases Plan to Reopen the Economy

Gov. Evers and the Department of Health Services (DHS) have issued Emergency Order #31, which establishes a reopening plan for the Wisconsin economy. The "Badger Bounceback Plan" is Gov. Evers's phased approach for dialing back the Safer at Home order and reopening the Wisconsin economy. Safer at Home currently remains in place, and DHS will determine when the state can begin to move through phases of the plan.
Continue reading about the plan.
WMC Releases "Back to Business" Plan to Reopen Economy

Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce last week released its "Back to Business" plan designed to strategically and safely allow Wisconsin businesses to reopen. The plan is a data-driven, regional approach for Wisconsin businesses to resume operation based on a number of risk factors.
Legislature Files Legal Challenge to DHS "Safer At Home" Order Extension

On April 16, Gov. Tony Evers directed Department of Health Services Secretary-designee Andrea Palm to extend Wisconsin's Safer at Home Order to May 26 under Emergency Order #28. Less than a week later, the Republican-led Wisconsin Legislature filed a lawsuit challenging DHS's authority to issue such an order.
Wisconsin Supreme Court Rejects ACLU Coronavirus Lawsuit

The Wisconsin Supreme Court has denied the petition of American Civil Liberties Union of Wisconsin (ACLU) seeking removal of inmates from Wisconsin correctional facilities to address the COVID-19 pandemic. The lawsuit had argued that Wisconsin prisoners and jail inmates should be released because subjecting prisoners to a likely outbreak of COVID-19 violates the rights to be free of cruel and unusual punishment and to receive due process.
Wisconsin Civil Justice Council Calls for Additional Liability Protections to Help Reopen and Restart the Wisconsin Economy

Wisconsin Civil Justice Council (WCJC) and a coalition of 40 Wisconsin businesses and chambers of commerce are calling for the Legislature to enact civil liability protections to help Wisconsin businesses as the state begins to reopen the economy. 

In the Legislature's first COVID-19 bill (2019 Act 185), WCJC worked with legislators to enact protections for health care workers and to take good first steps in protecting manufacturers, sellers and distributors of medical equipment to fight COVID-19. Now, WCJC and business associations are calling for additional protections for those manufacturing, selling and distributing medical equipment, as well as protections for employers seeking to keep their employees and customers safe and for persons rendering aid.
Sen. Bewley Elected as New Senate Minority Leader

On Friday, April 24, Wisconsin Senate Democrats elected Sen. Janet Bewley (D-Mason) as Senate Minority Leader. Bewley replaces Sen. Jennifer Shilling (D-La Crosse) who announced she will not run for reelection in November and subsequently resigned her leadership position.
UPDATED: Legislators Announce 2020 Plans

Rep. Jason Fields (D-Milwaukee) is the latest legislator to announce he will not be running for re-election in November. 

AG Kaul Asks EPA to Strengthen PFAS Regulations

Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul on April 20 joined 17 other state attorneys general in comments asking the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to strengthen its proposed regulations on importation of PFAS products.
PFAS (per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances) are a group of thousands of man-made chemicals found in many everyday products, including nonstick pans, cleaning products, paints, and firefighting foam. Competing studies debate whether or not these chemicals have negative health effects and, if they do, at what level they are harmful.
COVID-19 Resources

COVID-19 in Wisconsin

Hamilton Consulting has created this website to direct clients and colleagues to the latest information on how Gov. Tony Evers, Wisconsin state agencies, and the Legislature are responding to COVID-19. Please keep in mind that the situation is quickly evolving, and the Hamilton Consulting team will try to keep this page as updated as possible. If you have any additional questions, 

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News Clips
Utilities and Energy

Economic Development
Furlough plans begin to emerge at UW System campuses: Wisconsin Public Radio, April 22, 2020.

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