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0000017b-185c-d2e5-a37b-5cff92510000Wisconsin State and Local Government Sources: Wisconsin Department of Health Services: COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019)Oneida County Health DepartmentVilas County Health DepartmentLincoln County Health DepartmentMarathon County Health Department Langlade County Health DepartmentWestern Upper Peninsula Health DepartmentForest County Health DepartmentFederal Government Sources:Centers for Disease Control (CDC)Risk Assessment PageSituation Summary PageState Department Travel AdvisoriesWorld Health Organization (WHO)WHO Question and Answer Page

Oneida County Moves To Phase 2 Of COVID-19 Reopening

Oneida County will move fully into Phase 2 of its COVID-19 reopening plan at 5 p.m. Tuesday, said Health Officer Linda Conlon.

That means the county’s guidance allows for more people at libraries, gyms, and community centers and participating together in outdoor recreation.

“Oneida County has made progress in limiting the impact of COVID-19, but we have not yet reached our new normal,” the health department wrote in a press release. “We will continue to focus on the importance of continuation of businesses and activities for all sectors of our economy.”

Through guidance developed as part of the Onward Oneida County plan, the county uses several data points to determine when it moves between stages.

Oneida County came out with the comprehensive plan May 15, shortly after the Wisconsin Supreme Court struck down the statewide Safer at Home order. On May 15, the county put itself in Phase 1 of the recovery, although some sectors of the economy were placed in Phase 2.

Each part of Onward Oneida County, including the system of reopening phases, is only guidance. There is no enforceable order from the health department.

Among other provisions, moving to Phase 2 means:

  • Low-risk recreation, like tennis, pickleball, and BMX, may move from a 10 to a 50 person maximum
  • Gyms, community centers, libraries, and museums may accommodate 50 percent of their capacity, up from 25 percent
  • Up to 25 people can use outdoor playground equipment, up from 10

Other areas of the economy had already been in Phase 2, including the following provisions:

  • Hair salons, barbershops, nail salons, day spas, tattoo parlors, tanning facilities may open with best practices
  • Outdoor gatherings can have a 50-person maximum, while indoor gatherings can have a 50-person maximum or 25 percent capacity, whichever is less
  • Bars can open with physical distancing and active monitoring of staff
  • Theaters, amusement parks, arcades, trampoline parks, bowling alleys, and related establishments can open with a 50-person maximum or 25 percent capacity, whichever is less
  • Pools and water attractions can open with 50% capacity

With each provision, the county strongly recommended space between individuals and other best practices.
“This includes maintaining physical distancing, avoiding large gatherings, using good personal hygiene and handwashing, wearing face coverings, etc.,” the press release read.

“It is our job as public health professionals to [use] data and science to drive our decisions. At this time, the disease is still spreading across the country. We will need everyone to do their part and cooperate to slow the spread of COVID-19.”

See the official guidance moving Oneida County to Phase 2. Read the full Onward Oneida County Reopening Toolkit.

Ben worked as the Special Topics Correspondent at WXPR from September 2019 until November 2021. He now contributes occasionally to WXPR. During his full-time employment, his main focus was reporting on environment and natural resources issues in northern Wisconsin and Michigan's Upper Peninsula as part of The Stream, a weekly series.
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