Government

In response to a continued increase in the number of COVID cases, Dane County, through Public Health Madison & Dane County, has issued Emergency Order #10, which took effect at 12:01 a.m. on November 18, 2020 and will remain in effect until December 16, 2020.  The order keeps all restrictions and other primary aspects of the previous order in place, including keeping the county in Phase 2 of Forward Dane, with most businesses allowed to operate at 50% capacity, and restaurants at 25% capacity. The biggest changes in this order are the following: (1) Indoor Mass Gatherings are prohibited. (2)…
The Wisconsin Court of Appeals recently found that a continuing trespass does not create a new “event” each day that it remains on the property.  See Ebert v. Village of Gresham, 2020 WL 6278316, ¶¶ 2, 13.  Because a new event is not created each day, a claimant must file a notice of injury within 120 days after the happening of the event giving rise to the claim pursuant to Wis. Stat. § 893.80.  Id.  The court also held that only special circumstances like those in Gillen v. City of Neenah, where a specific statute conflicted with the…
Approximately 37,000 people in Wisconsin who were previously deemed ineligible for an Economic Impact Payment (EIP) may now be entitled to one.1 A recent ruling in a class-action lawsuit means that people in jail or prison cannot be denied a stimulus payment based solely on their incarceration status.2 It’s important to understand who is affected by this court order and what steps, if any, they need to take in order to receive their payment. The deadline was Oct. 30, 2020, for those filing by mail, but those filing online may do so by Nov. 21, 2020. About the…
Effective November 2, 2020 Wisconsin employers will be required to provide all departing employees, regardless of the reason for the separation with the company, written notice regarding Unemployment Insurance Benefits. What Should the Notice Say? The DWD has suggested language to be included in the notice to be given to employees, including the following: That the employee may file an unemployment claim in the first week that employment stops or work hours are reduced. That the employer direct the employee to the already required Unemployment Insurance poster for information on how and when to apply for benefits. DWD has additional…
Public Interest Law Section Blog October 30 2020 Working with Domestic Abuse Survivors: What Advocates Want You to Know Megan L. Sprecher and Araceli Wence Domestic abuse is a serious societal problem, the ramifications of which are felt in every community. Megan Sprecher and Araceli Wence provide tips for working with survivors of domestic abuse. October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, the perfect time for attorneys and other legal professionals to commit to learning more about the issue and consider ways to make their practice more welcoming and less re-traumatizing to survivors. Domestic abuse advocates at programs across the state…
In a sequel to our most recent KEW Tip (Evers’ 25% Public Gatherings Limitations Stands; Appeals Expected), a Wisconsin Court of Appeals granted interlocutory review, as well as a temporary injunction, to plaintiffs seeking to overturn the 25% capacity limit issued by the Wisconsin Department of Health Services in Emergency Order #3. As we discussed previously, a judge in Wisconsin in Barron County denied a request for an injunction filed by the Tavern League of Wisconsin and two pro-life groups. The plaintiffs argued that Emergency Order #3 exceeded the powers of the Secretary of the Department of…
On September 22, Governor Evers signed an order, Executive Order #90, declaring a public health emergency across the state, along with a mandatory mask order.  Our analysis regarding the statewide mask order is in this KEW Tips article, Governor Evers Extends Statewide Mask Order. On October 6, Andrea Palm of the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, issue Emergency Order #3, limiting indoor public gatherings to 25% of maximum capacity, saving for specific exempt activities. You can see KEW’s write up of Emergency Order #3  in KEW Tips:  Wisconsin Department of Health Services Places Statewide Limits Upon Public Gatherings.…
As COVID-19 cases continue a rapid increase throughout the state, Governor Evers directed the Wisconsin Department of Health Services to issue Emergency Order #3 (“EO 3”), to go into effect on October 8. EO 3 limits public gatherings throughout the state until November 6, 2020. For our Dane County readers, please note that this order does not replace current local Dane County order, which can be found at Public Health of Madison & Dane County. Also, we previously broke down the current Dane County Order KEW Tips, in our article titled: Dane County Requires Face Masks Starting July 13
October 21, 2015. Photo by Beth Skogen Photography.   On this day, five years ago, Jessica, Leslie and Nick officially opened up shop as Kramer, Elkins & Watt, LLC. As we celebrate five fabulous years with mostly ups and a few downs, we thought it would be fun to do an alternative post with some fun KEW facts.   How did the three KEW partners originally meet? All three worked at a law firm located on the west side of Madison.   Whose idea was it to start KEW? Nick got the ball rolling by approaching Jessica with the idea,…
On September 22, Governor Evers announced a new Declaration of Public Health Emergency and  Emergency Order requiring face coverings as the orders issued in July reach their expiration dates. Our analysis of the previous orders can be found here (along with a comparison to the Dane County mask order). Largely, the orders mirror the orders issued in late July. Citing the continued rise of COVID cases, Governor Evers reissued the declaration of a public health emergency under Wis. Stat. § 323.10 and 323.12, which gives him authority, among other powers to “Issue such orders as he deems necessary for the…
A property owner, Timothy Casa De Calvo, sued the Town of Hudson claiming that he adversely possessed real property adjacent to his house. The property in question had been dedicated about 31 years before as a street on a subdivision plat. The Circuit Court granted summary judgment in favor of the Town, and the court of appeals affirmed the judgment. Casa De Calvo v. Town of Hudson, No. 2019AP1851 (Wis. Ct. App. Sept. 9, 2020). The Court of Appeals explained that the property in question could not be adversely possessed because under Wis. Stat. § 893.29(2)(c) (1987-88)[1] it…
Due to a sharp increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in Wisconsin, Governor Tony Evers has declared a new public health emergency in addition to the previous emergency declaration made on July 30. This surge in cases has mostly affected people between the ages of 18 and 24, including those on college campuses and who have attended social gatherings. To address these concerns Gov. Evers also issued an executive order requiring Wisconsin residents who are five years old or more to wear masks or other face coverings whenever they are indoors or in enclosed spaces with people other…
Just like you cannot judge a book by its cover, you cannot judge the contents of an executive order by its title. President Donald Trump’s Memorandum for the Secretary of Education issued August 8, 2020, is titled: Memorandum on Continued Student Loan Payment Relief During the COVID-19 Pandemic At first blush, you may assume this is just a continuation of the legislature’s previously enacted CARES Act, which allows for deferred student loan payments to count toward Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) through Sept. 30, 2020, so long as you would have otherwise qualified for the payment to count. However,…
Compliance concept with icons and text. Regulations, law, standards, requirements, audit diagram on virtual screen. A flurry of federal and local legislation has been passed in the past five or so months pertaining to COVID. And, although we have blogged about most of this information in the past, the following is a brief rundown of what you need to know now, with hyperlinks to previous, more in-depth explanations. For employers in Dane County, the best place for the most up to date information is the Public Health, Madison & Dane County website. Dane County Employers must do the following:…
The United States Postal Service (USPS) has found its way into the national spotlight as the 2020 presidential election, COVID-19, and absentee voting loom large over the landscape.  The USPS is an independent agency of the executive branch of the federal government that provides postal service in the United States.  In fact, the USPS is one of the few government agencies explicitly authorized by the United States Constitution under Article I, Section 8, Clause 7, also known as the “Postal Clause.”  In other words, it is not your standard for-profit business as you often hear it described in the news. …
On August 8, 2020, President Trump issued an executive order and three presidential memoranda to address concerns created by the COVID pandemic. The Executive Order addressed assistance for renters and homeowners while the memoranda addressed student loan relief, deferring the payroll tax, and unemployment benefits. What is the difference between an executive order and a presidential memorandum? Very little. Both are directives issued by the President of the United States to govern actions by government officials and agencies. The significant differences are that: (1) the President, in an executive order, must cite to the authority the President to issue the…