State News

Evers releases three-phase plan to reopen Wisconsin economy

Gov. Tony Evers released the "Badger Bounce Back Plan" Monday, stating daily life will resume once there is a decline in coronavirus cases and symptoms for two weeks straight. 

Evers’ plan requires the "Safer-At-Home" restrictions to be lifted in three phases while still under the discretion of state health officials.

“I am jazzed and hopeful about this plan,” Evers told reporters Monday. “This plan is an all-out war on the virus.” 

The plan came after Evers announced he was extending the "Safer-At-Home" order to May 26, the most restrictive order yet in the country.

However, Republican legislators are suing Evers over his decision to extend the order. They have asked the Wisconsin Supreme Court to block the order, calling for Evers to reopen the state within the next four weeks. 

State health officials do not believe the state would achieve the required decrease in cases to lift restrictions within the next month, according to Evers. Without the current restrictions in place, COVID-19 cases and deaths could have been five times greater by now, according to State health officials. 

The first phase of Evers’ plan is to reopen K-12 schools and resume in-person instruction. Additionally, restaurants could open with restrictions and Wisconsin residents would be able to gather in groups of up to 10 people. 

In the second phase, restaurants could resume normal operations, as well as bars and nonessential businesses with social distancing restrictions. Colleges and universities could resume in-person instruction and residents could gather in groups of up to 50 people. 

In the last phase, all businesses may resume normal operations and gatherings will no longer have size limits. However, there would be residual social distancing applications for those who are considered high risk.

Essential businesses and operations, such as hospitals, grocery stores and pharmacies will continue normal operations for the remainder of the order. 

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