COVID-19 Snapshot: US Deaths On Rise, WI Cases Set New High, Gov. Declares New State of Emergency

COVID-19 Snapshot: US Deaths On Rise, WI Cases Set New High, Gov. Declares New State of Emergency

The coronavirus has now killed a quarter of a million Americans.  Johns Hopkins University reports the U.S. passed what once seemed like an unimaginable number yesterday.  A model from the University of Washington predicts the death toll could pass 300-thousand by Christmas.  

Here in our state, the coronavirus count in Wisconsin continues to go up by the thousands. The state’s Department of Health Services yesterday reported eight thousand positives and 53 more deaths. The state’s hospitalization numbers are steady, with just over 22 hundred people in the hospital with the virus. Since March, over 331 thousand people have tested positive for the virus. Over 75 percent of them have been declared fully recovered.

As measures to stop the spread continue, Governor Tony Evers is declaring a new state of emergency.  The governor today says the state can’t afford to stop mitigation efforts when it comes to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Evers is extending the public health emergency until January. 

The governor is also re-issuing an emergency order requiring face masks in public places, saying he is going to extend his mask requirement into next year. There is no specific end date. The governor says coronavirus numbers in the state are spiking, and he says wearing a mask is one of the best ways to slow the virus’ spread. The governor’s decision comes as the Wisconsin Supreme Court is deciding if the governor has the power to extend his mask mandate.

But, that message is received differently around our state. Wisconsin’s mask requirement is more of a mask suggestion in Trempealeau County.

Sheriff Brett Semingson says he will not enforce the state’s mask requirement, even if it is extended into January. Semingson says the governor’s order doesn’t give his office any power to enforce the mask mandate. Semingson says he thinks most people in the county do wear their masks.

Trempealeau County’s health department yesterday issued new rules for masks, including a requirement that kids over the age of five wear one.

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