Community

Mon
06
Apr
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Election Back On

WASHINGTON DC–In what can best be described as a voting roller coaster, the US Supreme Court ruled that the Wisconsin Spring Election must go on April 7, in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Last week, District Judge William M. Conley from the US District Court-Western District of Wisconsin extended the absentee voting date to April 13 and the absentee request date to April 3. On April 6 Gov. Tony Evers signed an executive order moving Election Day to June 9. On the same day the country’s highest court sided with Wisconsin Republican legislators who petitioned the court on Conley’s decision and the Wisconsin Sumpreme Court reject Evers order.

The ruling means that absentee ballots must be postmarked by tomorrow, April 7, those received after that time will not be counted. 

Sat
04
Apr
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Resident Suggests Decorating Middleton During Pandemic

MIDDLETON–Middleton City Administrator Mike Davis received a suggestion from a new resident to show Good Neighbor spirit during the COVID-19 pandemic by decorating their neighborhoods.

The resident, who was unnamed, offered the following proposals for the weeks of April. In an email to residents on April 4, Davis suggested enacting the idea.

The Schedule would be as follows:

Week One, April 6: Sidewalk Chalk–Write positive messages and get creative with sidewalk chalk on sidewalks and driveways.

Week Two, April 13: Hang Banners–Paint windows or hang banners with brightly colored positive messages/fun scenes for selfies.

Week Three, April 20: Kindness Rocks–Paint brightly colored positive messages on rocks and place throughout the neighborhood for others to see.

Fri
03
Apr
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Election Results to Come One Week After In Person Voting

MADISON–A Wisconsin federal judge who extended voter registration two weeks ago, has ruled that municipal clerks cannot release election results until April 13, one week after Election Day.

U.S. District Judge William Conley on Thursday extended absentee ballot request to 5 p.m. on April 3, and on Friday extended the return of ballots to April 13 by 4 p.m. In person voting was not extended, and is still slated for April 7.

The Wisconsin Election Commission petitioned the court to move the date of election results and absentee votes in an effort to get residents to mail in their ballot.

Fri
03
Apr
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Good Neighbor Hub Gets Community Update

MIDDLETON–The Middleton Good Neighbor Hub group kicked off its weekly Zoom meeting on March 27 with a call for district captains to organize volunteer efforts in various neighborhoods. The districts follow Middleton Common Council districts, and currently captains are need in districts 1, 4, 7 and 8.

City Administrator Mike Davis started off the updates and said the city has moved all voting precincts to Kromery Middle School. He reminded that poll workers are still needed for the Spring Election on April 7.

Davis said about 7,000 absentee ballots had been distributed as of Friday afternoon. The last day to request a ballot was March 30.

Bartlett Durand, who was conducting the meeting asked Davis how the city staff was doing during the Safer at Home order.

“People are stressed,” he said and added that it is hard to balance family, work and isolation. 

Fri
03
Apr
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Two Jail Inmates, Four Sheriff’s Deputies Test Positive for COVID-19

MADISON–When inmates at the Dane County Jail began displaying fevers and other potential COVID-19 symptoms, eight were quarantined and tested and two have now tested positive for the virus. Two sheriff’s deputies have tested positive for the virus.  

On March 26, the eight subjects, all male were placed in segregation cells in the Public Safety building while they awaited test results. 

Mon
30
Mar
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White House Extends Social Distancing Guidelines

WASHINGTON DC–In a press conference on March 29, Pres. Donald Trump extended the federal social distancing guidelines until April 30.

The announcement came just days after the president told reporters that he hoped to see churches full on Easter, April 12, despite COVID-1 cases climbing around the country. He called the wish for the country to be up and running by April 12, “aspirational.”

“I want our life back again,” he said from the White House Rose Garden.

Addressing the potential death rates the president said it would be good if the country could keep deaths at 100,000. Projection models have speculated that the death toll could go as high as 2.2 billion in the US. 

“It’s a horrible number. We all together have done a very good job,” he stated. 

Dr. Anthony Fauci, who has been leading the medical team for the federal government said he predicts 100,000-200,000 deaths if the country does not do all it can to mitigate the crisis. 

Fri
27
Mar
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Evers Suspends Evictions, Foreclosures for 60 Days

MADISON–On March 27, Gov. Tony Evers directed Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) Secretary-designee Andrea Palm to temporarily order the suspension of evictions and foreclosures amid the COVID-19 public health emergency. 

The order prohibits landlords from evicting tenants for any reason unless failure to proceed with the eviction will result in an imminent threat of serious physical harm to another person and mortgagees from commencing civil action to foreclose on real estate for 60 days. Wisconsinites who are able to continue to meet their financial obligations are urged to do so. This order does not in any way relieve a person's obligation to pay their rent or mortgages. 

Wed
25
Mar
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First Dane County Death Reported from COVID-19

MADISON-Public Health Madison & Dane County is confirming the first Dane County death associated with novel coronavirus infection (COVID-19). The individual was in their late 70s.

“We are saddened by the loss of one of our community members, and we extend our sympathies to their loved ones,” says Janel Heinrich, Director of Public Health Madison & Dane County. “COVID-19 can cause serious health complications and death, especially among older adults and people with chronic health conditions, that’s why it’s important that we all work together to prevent the spread of illness.”

To date, over 70 people in Dane County have been diagnosed with COVID-19.

“We strongly encourage community members to stay home unless activities are essential. In doing so, you’re not only helping protect yourself, but also our family, friends, neighbors, and fellow community members,” says Heinrich.

 

Wed
25
Mar
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Community Leaders Join Forces in Midst of COVID-19 Crisis

MIDDLETON–At the request of Middleton resident Bartlett Durand, community leaders came together in a Zoom meeting last week to provide updates and share resources of how the community can pull together during the COVID-19 outbreak. The virtual meeting, which was the first of regularly scheduled Friday meeting with the group, has been given the moniker Good Neighbor Hub.

He expressed his concern with the psychology of the community, and said he wanted to make sure no one was left behind during the crisis. “I’m kind of scared for our community. People are isolated and I’m worried,” Durand said. He added that he would like people to call on the six neighbors on either side of them to find out their needs and concerns.

City Administrator Mike Davis spoke first after Mayor Gurdip Brar, who was on the call could not be heard. Davis said the main concern for the city had been the upcoming election, urging residents to vote absentee. 

Wed
25
Mar
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Governor Outlines 'Safer at Home' Order

MADISON–Gov. Tony Evers signed an order Tuesday shutting down all non-essential businesses in the state in an effort to curb COVID-19 cases. The order called “Safer at Home,” was announced on the governor’s Twitter account on Monday, and details were worked out to determine which businesses were essential before the official announcement was made on March 24. 

In a live YouTube feed for media, Evers said the latest action is an effort to slow the spread of the disease, of which case had risen to 481 by the time of the press conference. 

“I have said all along this is a fluid process,” said the governor who was joined by health officials during the conference. 

He said the decision did not come lightly, and his concern was for citizens and healthcare workers in the state. 

“That’s always been the bottom line for me, keeping people safe,” Evers said. “At the end of the day, folks, we are all in this together.”

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