UPDATE: Wisconsin judge blocks enforcement of limit on indoor public gatherings

Coronavirus
WEDNESDAY 10/14/2020 8:24 a.m.

SAWYER COUNTY, Wis. (WFRV) – A judge in Northern Wisconsin has blocked the enforcement of Governor Tony Evers’ Emergency Order limiting indoor public gatherings.

The judge, according to court records, granted a temporary restraining order requested by the Tavern League of Wisconsin against Evers’ administration.

Court records show the temporary restraining order was issued Wednesday morning.

Sawyer County Circuit Judge John Yackel blocked the order and set a court date for Monday. 

This comes after Wisconsin reported a record number of new COVID-19 related deaths and new cases on Tuesday, adding 34 deaths and over 3,000 new cases.

On Tuesday, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett issued a warning to the city’s bars to get their acts together, according to Local 5 sister station, CBS 58, in Milwaukee.

“If the bars want to screw this up, then there’s going to be problems,” said Barrett during the twice a week city/county coronavirus press call.

Last week, Milwaukee health officials announced the city wouldn’t adhere to Gov. Evers’ order, but will instead enforce its own coronavirus orders for bars and restaurants.

Original Story: Tavern League files lawsuit against Wisconsin limit on indoor public gatherings

WEDNESDAY 10/14/2020 6:06 a.m.

SAWYER COUNTY, Wis. (WFRV) – The Tavern League of Wisconsin has filed a lawsuit in response to Emergency Order #3, which limits indoor public gatherings.

According to a statement from Tavern League of Wisconsin President Chris Marsicano, the lawsuit, filed Tuesday in Sawyer County, seeks an injuction to prevent the enforcement of the order.

“The lawsuit asserts that Emergency Order #3 is invalid and unenforceable because it was not promulgated as an administrative rule as required by the Wisconsin Supreme Court ruling just five months ago in Wisconsin Legislature v Palm. Restaurants, taverns, bars, and supper clubs did not cause this pandemic, but they are systematically facing bankruptcy, closure, and economic ruin,” Marsicano says.

He continues, saying, “We do not have the financial wherewithal to survive the blunt force of another business shutdown which have not proven effective and will result in catastrophic losses in the hospitality industry in Wisconsin.”

The Tavern League of Wisconsin will continue to encourage its members to follow WEDC guidelines to provide safe environments, according to Marsicano.

“As an association, we support efforts to limit the spread of COVID-19, but allow our members to continue to serve their communities,” says Marsicano. “The city of Milwaukee has found a way to allow bars and restaurants to operate fully with approved safety plans. These efforts deserve further examination through the rulemaking process and should be tailored to fit the unique circumstances of each county.”

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett issued a warning to the city’s bars to get their acts together, according to Local 5 sister station, CBS 58, in Milwaukee.

“If the bars want to screw this up, then there’s going to be problems,” said Barrett during Tuesday’s twice a week city/county coronavirus press call.

Barrett told CBS 58 that he drives around and looks at bars across the city and has witnessed are employees and patrons being unsafe. If the city receives a complaint related to any business, it will follow a standard process to respond, shared CBS 58. First, the city will call the business. Second, it can issue a citation. Third, it could choose to go after a business’s license.

Barrett said the city could drop the hammer and start revoking bar safety plans to cut their capacity if the situation doesn’t improve.

“The Tavern League of Wisconsin is committed to fighting the spread of COVID-19, but will not stand by and watch its members be forced out of business by unlawful orders,” Marsicano says. “We need the help and support of our communities and elected officials to defeat COVID-19 while keeping our ‘OPEN’ signs lit – let’s work together to Kill Covid, Not Small Business.”

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