A boost for Wisconsin child care centers. But is it too little too late? — 5/19/20

A roundup of top news and information about Wisconsin’s response to the coronavirus

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The state Department of Children and Families plans to offer child care centers a $51 million boost in federal funds after a Republican-controlled legislative budget committee approved the spending on Friday. It’s less than half the $125 million Gov. Tony Evers proposed spending in March, and advocates say the money falls short of what is needed to rescue businesses asked to stay open under Evers’ now-scuttled Safer at Home order with little state or federal support, the Wisconsin State Journal reports. 

Until the legislative action, “Wisconsin had been among only a handful of states to fail to provide financial assistance to the industry,” Chris Rickert reports for the newspaper. 

Top Stories

Amber Arnold / Wisconsin State Journal

Jonathan Hall, center director for the Madison YMCA’s after-school program, plays a drawing game with a group of children Monday at the Lussier Family West YMCA.

Child care centers in line for $51 million bailout, or far less than what’s needed, advocates sayWisconsin State Journal

Evers announces $1 billion in aid for testing, tracing at local health departments as Wisconsin’s COVID-19 cases near 13,000Appleton Post-Crescent 

You don’t need invasive tech for successful contact tracing. Here’s how it works.ProPublica

Madison and Dane County launching plan to reopen economy in phasesWisconsin State Journal 

Rock County announces reopening guideBeloit Daily News

City of Racine limits mass gatherings through July 31Journal Times 

Thousands of absentee ballots in Wisconsin weren’t counted because of mailing problems and tech glitchesMilwaukee Journal Sentinel 

Minority-owned businesses can get $2K grants from stateWPR 

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Government updates

Wisconsin Department of Health Services

Gov. Tony Evers’ office

U.S. Centers and Disease Control and Prevention

World Health Organization 

Live updates 

Live coverage from USA Today-Wisconsin reporters 

Live coverage from Wisconsin State Journal reporters


“Obviously we’re doing all the constant cleaning, we do our best to get people to physically distance, but there were times when they just didn’t seem to care themselves, so it’s nerve racking for me that way … Of, course, I care if I get sick, I care if anyone else gets sick, but I can’t control any of that stuff. Not really.”

Deb Glembocki, owner of Kenosha’s Brat Stop, as quoted by WPR in a story about Illinois residents flooding Wisconsin businesses during the pandemic.

Data to note

Wisconsin officials reported 198 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, with 5.9% of tests coming back positive, according to the state Department of Health Services. Here is the latest look at trends from our partners at WisContext.

The Evers administration is no longer using criteria under his Badger Bounce Back plan to decide when to reopen the economy in stages (That’s after the Wisconsin Supreme Court stuck down the Safer at Home order.) But if those criteria were still in play, Wisconsin would meet four of six measures.

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Ana Martinez-Ortiz / Milwaukee Neighborhood News Service

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Community Heroes: She’s making life a little sweeter for essential workersMilwaukee Neighborhood News Service

Their part-time jobs as grocery store workers have turned into an essential businessMilwaukee Journal Sentinel

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