How Wisconsin’s coronavirus surge threatens its economy — 10/9/20

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

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Today we highlight a story from the Green Bay Press-Gazette about how Wisconsin’s economic recovery during the pandemic still depends on slowing the spread of COVID-19.

Reporters Jeff Bollier and Nusaiba Mizan focus on Northeast Wisconsin, where Appleton, Green Bay, Oshkosh, Fond du Lac and Marinette are among the 20 U.S. metro areas with the greatest number of positive COVID-19 tests per capita, according to the New York Times.

“When you add the revenue lost from the postponement of both the Wisconsin Badgers-Notre Dame Fighting Irish football game at Lambeau and the Ryder Cup pro golf tournament at Kohler, the lack of major sports events could easily cost the northeast region over $150 million,” Bollier and Mizan report. “Then there’s the Experimental Aircraft Association’s decision to cancel this year’s AirVenture in Oshkosh. That dealt a $170 million blow to Winnebago, Outagamie, Fond du Lac, Calumet and Brown counties, too.”

Top Stories

John Maniaci / UW Health

Dr. Jeff Pothof, UW Health’s chief quality officer, on Sept. 2 became the first person at UW Hospital to get an injection in a phase 3 trial of AstraZeneca’s experimental COVID-19 vaccine, which was put on hold the next week. It’s not clear when the study might resume.

As number of COVID-19 cases in Northeast Wisconsin soars, experts worry it could sink state’s economic recovery from pandemicGreen Bay Press-Gazette 

Republicans try to shift attention to civil unrest instead of COVID-19 as cases continue to surgeMilwaukee Journal Sentinel 

COVID-19 vaccine trial at UW Health still on hold as Trump, FDA clash on approval rulesWisconsin State Journal 

Wisconsin hospitals, businesses team up on campaign to stop COVID-19 spreadWisconsin State Journal 

Need for food assistance in Marathon County ‘nonstop’ as COVID-19 cases continue to surgeWausau Daily Herald 

Evers ‘concerned’ by Milwaukee’s decision not to enforce 25% capacity mandate for restaurants, barsWDJT-Milwaukee

Oconto Co. medical leaders implore residents to act to slow ‘uncontrolled’ spread of COVID-19Green Bay Press-Gazette 

Green Bay on ‘verge of a crisis’ as virus overwhelms hospitals, Wisconsin doctor saysCNBC 

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“We’ve had people who’ve lost their house … I remember one man was basically in tears, he had $17 left in his checking account. I guess there’s a sense of pride that we’re serving our constituents, but it shouldn’t take an elected official getting involved.”

— Rep. John Nygren, R-Marinette, speaking to WDJT-Milwaukee about fielding hundreds of calls from jobless constituents who are struggling to obtain state benefits during the pandemic

Food access trouble?

We know that when classes are virtual, many Wisconsin students and families lose access to food schools provide. And as the school year starts, some meal sites are closing. Share your experience with News414, Wisconsin Watch’s service journalism collaboration with Milwaukee Neighborhood News Service and Outlier Media. Click here for details.

You can also view a list of Milwaukee-area food distribution sites for students here.

Data to note

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services on Friday reported 16 additional deaths linked to COVID-19, bringing the state’s total to 1,440 during the pandemic.

Here is a visualization of trends in cases and deaths from our partners at WisContext.

Resilient Wisconsin

People helping others and showing resilience during this time of anxiety. Send suggestions by tagging us on social media — @wisconsinwatch — or emailing us:

Cap Times Idea Fest: Panel discusses crucial next steps in strengthening local economy post-COVIDCap Times

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