Associated Press

Democrats Set To Take Next Steps Toward Virtual Convention

May 11, 2020
Michelle Maternowski / WUWM

Democrats are making new moves toward a virtual presidential nominating convention this August, with party officials preparing to grant convention organizers in Milwaukee the authority to design an event that won’t require delegates to attend in person amid the coronavirus pandemic.

A top party official discussed the plans ahead of Tuesday’s virtual meeting of the Democratic National Committee’s Rules and Bylaws Committee. The official spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss moves that still require approval by the committee and the DNC’s 447 members.

Evers Allows Nearly All Wisconsin Retail Stores To Open With Limits

May 11, 2020
Ann-Elise Henzl

Updated at 2:44 p.m. CT

Gov. Tony Evers on Monday allowed nearly all nonessential retail stores to reopen as long as they serve no more than five customers at a time, partially lifting the restriction that has kept them closed for weeks to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

Emily Files

University of Wisconsin System leaders are working on safety protocols that could enable students to return to campus if the coronavirus pandemic stretches into fall, system President Ray Cross told regents Thursday.

Cross told the regents during a teleconference that system leaders want to be able to test all faculty, staff and students — a task he called “monumental.” They also want to be able to trace student contacts, create a way to isolate and quarantine the sick as well as infected people who aren't showing symptoms.

Emily Files / WUWM

Updated at 2:50 p.m. CT

University of Wisconsin System President Ray Cross directed campuses Thursday to prepare to cut academic programs and brace for layoffs as the coronavirus pandemic deepens the system's financial losses.

Cross said he wants campuses to evaluate their programs by January with an eye toward cost, whether they are duplicated at another campus, and student demand. System officials will decide which courses to eliminate subject to regents' approval, Cross told reporters during a video conference Wednesday afternoon.

Teran Powell

Updated at 3:33 p.m. CT

Wisconsin’s presidential primary election held last month in the face of the coronavirus pandemic drew concern from doctors, voters, poll workers and politicians who warned that having thousands of people leave their homes to cast ballots would further spread the highly contagious virus.

Now well beyond the 14-day incubation period for COVID-19, and with a Tuesday special congressional election in northern Wisconsin looming, it remains largely unknown just how many people contracted the virus at the polls on April 7.

Chuck Quirmbach

Every resident and worker in all 373 Wisconsin nursing homes will receive a free coronavirus test as part of a plan to expand testing to everyone who needs one, Gov. Tony Evers announced Monday.

SCREENSHOT / FINCANTIERI MARINETTE MARINE VIDEO

A Wisconsin shipbuilder won a contract for up to 10 frigates on Tuesday, beating out three other shipbuilders, as the Navy seeks to build smaller, lethal warships during a time of growing threats.

The $795 million contract calls for Fincantieri Marinette Marine to move forward with design and construction of the lead ship, with options for up to nine more frigates, the Navy announced Thursday. The contract carries a value of $5.6 billion if all 10 ships are built, the Navy said.

Evers Orders 5% Cut In State Spending

Apr 29, 2020
Chuck Quirmbach

Updated at 2 p.m. CT

Gov. Tony Evers has ordered state agencies to reduce spending by 5% between now and July, drawing praise Wednesday from Republicans who called for even more cuts in the face of steep revenue drops due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Chuck Quirmbach

Updated at 2:35 p.m. CT

There are no plans to postpone or otherwise alter a special congressional election in Wisconsin that is less than two weeks away, even though more than 50 people who voted in person or worked the polls during the state's presidential primary this month have tested positive for COVID-19.

Audrey Nowakowski

Updated Wednesday at 9:08 a.m.:

Thirty-four Wisconsin state parks, forests and recreational areas closed for three weeks will be able to reopen on Friday as temperatures increase across the state and cases of coronavirus level off, Gov. Tony Evers announced Tuesday.

Ann-Elise Henzl

Dog groomers, upholsterers, lawnmower repair shops and other nonessential businesses that can offer contactless services will be allowed to reopen in Wisconsin, the latest loosening of a stay-at-home order designed to curb the spread of the coronavirus, Gov. Tony Evers announced Monday.

The Milwaukee Police Department is investigating a multiple shooting in a home in the 2800 block of N. 12th St., on the city’s north side.

In a brief news conference early Monday afternoon, Police Chief Alfonso Morales said the bodies of five people, ranging in age from 14 to 41, were discovered in the home after someone called police around 10:30 a.m. on Monday to report that the person’s family was dead.

Joe Raedle / Getty Images

Meat isn't going to disappear from supermarkets because of outbreaks of the coronavirus among workers at U.S. slaughterhouses. But as the meat plants struggle to remain open, consumers could face less selection and slightly higher prices.

Industry leaders acknowledge that the U.S. food chain has rarely been so stressed and that no one is sure about the future, even as they try to dispel concerns about shortages.

Maayan Silver

Updated at 2:57 p.m. CT  

Hundreds of people demonstrating against the Evers administration’s safer-at-home order gathered outside the Wisconsin Capitol on Friday, ignoring social distancing recommendations and crowding together on the steps of the state Capitol.

There were lots of American flags and anti-Evers signs. Some people were sporting Trump gear and signs. 

Some people wore masks or bandannas per guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But many did not.

Chip Somodevilla / GETTY IMAGES

Democratic Party chairman Tom Perez said Thursday that he expects to hold an “in-person convention” in Milwaukee to nominate Joe Biden for president, though he didn’t rule out the potential that portions of the event would be conducted virtually.

The convention is slated for the week of Aug. 17, but precise dates remain up in the air after Perez and party officials scrapped their original July 13-16 plans amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Courtesy of Tony Evers

Updated Thursday at 11:49 a.m. CT

Republican leaders of the Wisconsin Legislature asked the conservative-controlled Wisconsin Supreme Court on Tuesday to block an order from Democratic Gov. Tony Evers' administration extending the safer-at-home order until May 26.

Teran Powell

Updated at 1:02 p.m. CT

Health officials in Wisconsin said they have identified at least seven people who appear to have contracted the coronavirus from participating in the April 7 election, the first such cases following in-person voting that was held despite widespread concern about the public health risks.

WUWM

Willie Davis, a Pro Football Hall of Fame defensive lineman who helped the Green Bay Packers win each of the first two Super Bowls, has died. He was 85.

A 15th-round draft pick from Grambling began his NFL career by playing both offense and defense for the Cleveland Browns in 1958 and ’59. He had his greatest success after getting traded to the Packers. He remained with the Packers until finishing his NFL career in 1969 and was first-team All-Pro five times.

Maayan Silver

The longest-serving legislator in the United States is finally going to call it quits. Wisconsin state Sen. Fred Risser announced Thursday that he won't seek reelection this fall. 

Screenshot / Gov. Tony Evers / Facebook

For the most up-to-date information, read WUWM's March 18 coronavirus post.

Updated at 4:40 p.m. CT

As of Thursday afternoon, state health officials say Wisconsin now has eight confirmed cases of the coronavirus. This is up from the six reported cases announced Wednesday.

DARREN HAUCK / Getty Images

A conservative law firm asked the Wisconsin Supreme Court on Wednesday to overturn an appeals court ruling that stopped the purging of more than 200,000 people from the state's voter rolls, a move that Democrats argued was intended to make it more difficult for their voters to cast ballots.

CHICCODODIFC / FOTOLIA

Twenty-four people associated with a violent drug trafficking gang operating in a northeast Milwaukee neighborhood face federal charges, authorities said Wednesday.

Hundreds of federal, state and local officers executed search warrants Tuesday and rounded up 17 of the defendants. The rest remained at large Wednesday, U.S. Attorney Matthew Krueger said.

Officers recovered 53 firearms, including military assault-style weapons, 900 grams of heroin, and more than 150 grams of a drug mixture that contained fentanyl. They also found cocaine, marijuana and $300,000 in cash.

Angelina Mosher Salazar

Updated at 10:07 p.m. CT

Six people were killed in a shooting on the Molson Coors Brewing Co. campus on Wednesday, Milwaukee Police Chief Alfonso Morales said. The dead include the shooter, a 51-year-old Milwaukee man. He died from a self-inflicted gunshot.

Just after 2 p.m., Milwaukee police responded to a shooting at the 4100 block of West State Street — the site most people know as the old Miller brewery. During a press briefing, Morales said the scene is secure and all employees have left the campus. 

CHICCODODIFC / FOTOLIA

Updated at 4:19 p.m. CT

A woman who was found slain in a Milwaukee garage along with her two daughters had been beaten up by her boyfriend the day before she was reported missing — and just hours after the funeral of the couple's young son, according to a criminal complaint.

WISCONSIN DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS

Republicans on the Legislature's finance committee on Wednesday rejected a plan to build new institutions to replace Wisconsin's troubled youth prison, saying the state doesn't have the money for the facilities.

The move signals that the existing prison won't shut down by the July 2021 deadline lawmakers imposed last year and raises questions about whether the prison will ever close.

Courtesy of Marquette University

A dean at Marquette University is one of two people struck and killed by suspected drunk drivers in separate crashes on Milwaukee's near west side, officials said Wednesday.

Marquette University officials identified one of the victims as Joe Daniels, 60, a business school dean and a faculty member since 1992.

He was crossing a main street on campus about 8 p.m. Tuesday when a 20-year-old female driver struck him, according to police. The woman was arrested.

CHICCODODIFC / FOTOLIA

Wauwatosa police say the teenage boy who was fatally shot by police fired first in Sunday's shooting at Mayfair Mall.  

On Friday, police released a squad car video from the shooting. Wauwatosa police officers don't wear body cameras.

The video shows police chasing 17-year-old Alvin Cole and the sound of gun shots. After Cole fired, one officer fired back five times, according to Wauwatosa Police Operations Capt. Brian Zalewski. The name of the officer has not been released.

ChiccoDodiFC / stock.adobe.com

Updated Feb. 5, 2020, at 5:06 p.m. CT

Democratic Gov. Tony Evers signed a Republican-authored bill Wednesday that imposes new restrictions on firefighting foam to curb pollution from PFAS chemicals.  

The bill prohibits the use of foam containing intentionally added PFAS except in emergency fire situations. Firefighters will have to train with foam or other substances that don't contain the chemicals.

STREETER LECKA / GETTY IMAGES

Updated at 10:15 p.m. CT

The two leaders of Milwaukee's host committee for the 2020 Democratic National Convention have been terminated. This comes after they were placed on leave pending an investigation into allegations that they oversaw a toxic work environment, a dramatic shakeup less than six months before the showcase political event in swing state Wisconsin.

In Battleground Wisconsin, GOP Opens Office In Milwaukee

Feb 3, 2020
Sarah Silbiger / Getty Images

The Wisconsin Republican Party this week will open its first-ever office in the heart of downtown Milwaukee, one of the clearest signs yet of the party's push to cut into Democrats' advantage among minority voters and the latest indication of how hard-fought every vote will be in the battleground state.

The office, which opens Thursday, will serve as the base for the party's minority outreach coordinator and serve as a hub for Republican events, campaign organizing and efforts to connect with black and Hispanic people in Milwaukee, party leaders told The Associated Press.

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