gov. tony evers

Gov. Tony Evers will make a prime-time speech Tuesday night to address the COVID-19 surge in the state.

For the first time, 2,000 Wisconsinites are now hospitalized with the virus.

Over the last week, the state has reported an average of more than 5,600 new cases each day. That’s behind only Illinois and Texas.

The state is also fourth in new cases per capita.

More than 2,300 people have died in Wisconsin during the pandemic.

Evers will speak at 6 p.m.

You can listen live on WXPR or here on

Wisconsin is now under a State of Emergency following protests across the state.

Gov. Tony Evers made the move Tuesday afternoon after a night of protests.

The protests were reacting to the shooting of 29-year-old Jacob Blake, a Black man repeatedly shot in the back by Kenosha police.

The State of Emergency declaration calls additional members of the Wisconsin National Guard to duty.

The National Guard will protect critical infrastructure, assist in maintaining public safety, and protect peaceful protests.

Some protests got violent overnight.

A local Democratic leader says the unusual manner the party has nominated a presidential ticket this year because of COVID-19 has had many positives.

Vilas County Democratic Party Chair Jane Nicholson says the convention this week has been intriguing, and even virtually, the convention has become a model for the future...

"It seems incredibly wise and rich in terms of what's unfolded. It's a way of conserving certain kinds of energies and at the same time being able to include many more people..."

Wisconsin Department of Health Services

Gov. Tony Evers said he’s “considering” a statewide mandate to wear masks in response to record numbers of COVID-19 cases in Wisconsin.

At least 30 states have such orders.

On Thursday, Evers told reporters his administration is looking at a statewide order, citing evidence mask-wearing helps slow the spread of COVID-19.

Gov. Tony Evers blasted Republican lawmakers and the state Supreme Court on Thursday after the court struck down Evers’ Safer at Home order. But a local Republican lawmaker was pleased with the result.

Evers called on people in Wisconsin to voluntarily continue Safer at Home precautions, like staying home, limiting interactions, and keeping physical distance from others.

“Just because Republicans have said it can be a free-for-all, that doesn’t mean we have to throw that good judgment out the window,” Evers said.

Wisconsin will allow standalone stores to offer in-person shopping for up to five people at a time, according to a new directive from Gov. Tony Evers.

Evers announced the step Monday and it took effect immediately.

It allows standalone retail stores, or retail stores in strip malls, to open to customers for the first time since late March.

The stores can admit no more than five people at a time and social distancing measures must be followed.

Stay the course. That's the message from Wisconsin Lt. Governor Mandela Barnes.

Barnes says they're waiting the state Supreme Court decision on the state emergency order known as Safer At Home. He says Gov. Evers' Badger Bounce Back Plan is on course..

"There are six different criteria to be met for us to begin that process, and at this point we've reached two of those, so we are a third of the way there and it is laid out in an easy to read red light-green light format..."

Even with the benefit of hindsight, Gov. Tony Evers wouldn’t have done anything differently with regard to his administration’s COVID-19 response.

That’s what he told WXPR in an interview Wednesday.

As of Wednesday, Wisconsin had nearly 9,000 confirmed COVID-19 infections, and 362 people had died.

In March, Evers closed schools and later issued his Safer at Home order, which was subsequently extended to May 26.

Representative Rob Swearingen of Rhinelander is keeping a close eye on court proceedings and on-going negotiations in Madison to determine when Wisconsin will reopen again.

Wisconsin DNR

At the direction of Governor Evers , the state will reopen 34 state parks this Friday.

The DNR says it will modify current operations to maintain a safe environment for visitors and staff.

Due to crowds, litter, vandalism and the need to protect the health and safety of visitors and staff, Gov. Evers directed the DNR to close 38 Wisconsin State Parks, Forests and Recreational Areas on Friday, April 10.

Under a new emergency order, additional nonessential businesses in Wisconsin will be able to provide limited services starting Wednesday.

Gov. Tony Evers directed Department of Health Services Sec.-designee Andrea Palm to sign the order Monday.

Starting Wednesday, nonessential businesses will be allowed to do curbside drop-off of goods and animals. Customers are still not allowed to enter these businesses.

The Tavern League of Wisconsin wants Gov. Tony Evers to allow bars and restaurants to reopen May 1.

That’s almost a full month before Evers’ new Safer at Home order is set to expire.  The order is designed to address the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

State Rep. Rob Swearingen (R-Rhinelander) also owns the Al-Gen Supper Club in Rhinelander.

He said the Safer at Home order is hurting businesses like his.

State of Wisconsin

Gov. Tony Evers laid out a three-phase, metrics-oriented method for reopening the state’s economy on Monday.

His administration is calling it Badger Bounce Back. Its release comes four days after Evers ordered the state’s Safer at Home order extended through May 26.

Gov. Tony Evers’ Safer at Home order will be extended through nearly the end of May, Evers directed on Thursday.

The coronavirus-response order, set to expire next Friday, will now go through May 26, unless it’s superseded by another order.

“We can’t think of this like flipping a light switch. It’s like turning a dial. The more disciplined we are now, the faster we can turn it,” Evers said.

Ben Meyer/WXPR

Patty Fitzpatrick really didn’t want to be at the polls on Tuesday, interacting with voters in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I’m not comfortable.  But I feel like it’s my obligation and so I’m doing it,” she said.

Fitzpatrick serves as the chief election inspector for the city of Rhinelander, and she oversaw voting at Rhinelander High School on Tuesday.

But she wished in-person voting wasn’t even happening.