Parisi wants entire state to adopt Dane County-like health orders

“We all need you to act”
Dane Co. Executive Joe Parisi holds news conference on August 10, 2020.
Dane Co. Executive Joe Parisi holds news conference on August 10, 2020.(WMTV-TV)
Published: Nov. 10, 2020 at 1:19 PM CST
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - Dane Co. Executive Joe Parisi wants to see Wisconsin lawmakers adopt the kind of emergency health orders currently in place in his county and enact them statewide for the next 30 days.

“We need you to act: we need a plan, and we need it now,” Parisi said.

In an open letter to the legislature, Parisi urged them to work with Gov. Tony Evers to strike a deal to enact statewide public health orders, arguing if they simple took Dane County’s orders and applied them to the other 71 counties, “Wisconsin would dramatically reduce the case spread that right now is frankly out of control due to state inaction.”

He went on to point to a couple of key numbers, crediting the health orders and claiming they demonstrate the relative success Dane Co. is having:

  • The percentage of new cases attributed to bars and restaurants has fallen to 4%
  • The infection rate in Dane Co. is 60; statewide it is nearing 100

Despite touting those numbers, Parisi painted a bleak picture of the situation in his county, saying “our ICU’s are full, our hospital staff stretched beyond limit, the spread of the virus is at record highs, and there is no let-up in sight.” Not long before he released his letter, Public Health Madison & Dane Co. reported adding over 700 new cases to its COVID-19 dashboard and contradicted new CDC guidelines by stating people should stay home for Thanksgiving.

Parisi contended the public has been left confused by “legal action and apathy,” appearing to reference the lawsuits from the legislature itself or private citizens challenging many of the emergency health orders implemented by the Dept. of Health Services and the Evers Administion.

Noting that the presidential election is over, Parisi urged lawmakers to set aside politics and told them “more lawsuits will only result in needless loss of life.”

“There are people lying unconscious in ICU’s all across our state, and they need you to act. Their families and loved ones need you to act. We all need you to act,” he continued.

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