(Madison) To help their over 5000 members struggling through this unprecedented time, the Tavern League of Wisconsin announces the creation of C.H.E.E.R.S. Wisconsin. C.H.E.E.R.S. stands for Communities Helping Empower Employers to Remain Successful.

Mission Statement of C.H.E.E.R.S. Wisconsin

All contributions to C.H.E.E.R.S. Wisconsin will be donated directly to Tavern League of Wisconsin members in good standing as of March 1, 2020.

To contribute please click here

* If you plan on sending in a check please make it out to CHEERS  


 State Accepting Applications for Small Business Grants from June 15th to June 21st

The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation has announced when they will begin accepting applications for the “We’re All In” small business grant Governor Evers announced last month. Beginning on June 15th and continuing until June 21st, WEDC will accept applications for the $75 million grant program. The program will provide $2,500 grants to 30,000 small businesses. To be eligible, businesses must have no more than 20 employees and have annual revenues less than $1 million. Money for the grant program is coming from the federal CARES Act. Additional information regarding the grant program can be found on the WEDC website.

 Joint Association Letter on Streamlined Forgiveness Process
The TLW has joined with other Associations to urge the SBA to simplify the loan forgiveness program for small businesses. We will keep you posted on our progress on this important issue. Please see the letter below.
June 4, 2020
The Honorable Steven Mnuchin
U.S. Treasury
1500 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20220
The Honorable Jovita Carranza
U.S. Small Business Administration
409 3rd Street, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20416
Dear Secretary Mnuchin and Administrator Carranza:
We the undersigned associations are writing on behalf of each of our members in Wisconsin to express our concerns that the process associated with the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Loan Forgiveness application as outlined in the recently released guidance is unnecessarily burdensome on our nation’s small businesses. We urge you to consider a streamlined process for small loans.
We are concerned that this process will require even the smallest PPP borrowers to hire outside experts in order to realize the purpose of the program and receive forgiveness of their PPP loan. With the SBA estimate that each loan forgiveness application will take up to three hours to complete, businesses will struggle to complete these applications in a timely manner due to this technical and burdensome process. On behalf of the small businesses across our state we urge you to consider a more streamlined process.
We believe it would best serve the interests of small business owners, taxpayers, and the policy objectives established by Congress, to consider making the loan forgiveness process easier and less technical for smaller borrowers, whose businesses are already at greatest risk because of COVID-19. We urge you to consider a de minimis threshold under which borrowers with outstanding loans may receive 100% PPP loan forgiveness through completion of a “PPP-EZ form” – a simple one-page attestation – acknowledging that they spent the majority of PPP funds to preserve the jobs of their employees as outlined in the guidance and consistent with their PPP application. Borrowers could still be asked to maintain documentation in the case of an SBA audit in future years, but simplifying the forgiveness application process for the smallest borrowers will provide additional relief to struggling small businesses by eliminating the existing requirement to spend hours dealing with unnecessarily complicated paperwork, performing calculations, or expending precious dollars on consultants in order to comply.
In addition to relieving these small businesses of the significant time and expenses required by the guidance released, this streamlined approach for loans will also relieve the SBA from an enormous administrative burden created by millions of requests for forgiveness.
We are confident that a streamlined process can be created by the Treasury and the SBA that would comply with the plain language of the CARES Act, and we encourage quick action to establish such a process before these small businesses expend precious resources hiring outside expertise to assist them with the very burdensome process currently outlined in the interim final rule.
Thank you for your consideration of this request. 


Court Overturns Stay at Home Order

On May 13, 2020, the Wisconsin Supreme Court issued its decision in the case of Wisconsin Legislature v. Palm. In a 4-3 decision, the Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled Emergency Order #28, Safer at Home Order (Order #28) invalid and unenforceable for failure to follow the emergency rule promulgation process under Wisconsin Chapter 227 and for exceeding the Department of Health Services (“DHS”) Secretary’s authority. The Tavern League filed an amicus brief in support of the Legislature in this case.
The Court’s decision takes effect immediately, meaning that – at the state level – Order #28 is unenforceable and there are no longer requirements that people remain in their homes, or restrictions on nonessential travel or business operations including restaurants and taverns.
Our lawyers are reviewing the ability of local municipalities or counties to pass their own Safe at Home Orders. For the time being, Licensees should know they may face fines for opening in violation of a local order. For that reason, it is important to consider any local orders and consult with the municipality issuing their license.
The following is from the Wisconsin Counties Association which states it is unclear whether locals have the authority to pass Safe at Home Orders. Excerpt from the Wisconsin Counties Association memo to their members:
  • Validity of Local Health Orders Many local health officers have issued orders under the authority granted by Wis. Stat. § 252.03 and other local health officers may be contemplating the issuance of orders similar to the Safer at Home Order. While Wis. Stat. § 252.03 provides a local health officer with broad regulatory authority, enforcement of local health orders proceeds under the same statute relating to enforcement of statewide orders like Safer at Home – Wis. Stat. § 252.25. This is the same statute that the Court cited in its decision as problematic in terms of enforcement of the Safer at Home Order. As a result, it is unclear whether a local health order would, in the Court’s view, suffer from the same deficiencies that caused the Court to invalidate the Safer at Home Order.

WEDC Guidelines

Many of you are beginning to reopen your business. Please review the Wisconsin Economic Development Commission Guidelines to ensure a safe workplace for your employees and a safe responsible environment for your customers. The following Guidelines are from the WEDC website. The TLW strongly encourages you to incorporate the WEDC Guidelines into your business plan as you reopen – we want to provide a safe experience for your employees and customers.
Food Safety:
  • Ensure you are adhering to the requirements in the Wisconsin Food Code. Follow four steps to food safety: Clean, Separate, Cook and Chill.
  • Use gloves to avoid direct bare hand contact with ready-to-eat foods or unwrapped single-use items such as straws, stir sticks or toothpicks.
  • Do not allow customers to refill their own drinks.
  • Use rolled silverware/napkins stored in sealed bags
  • Remove shared condiments from tables.
  • No buffet/salad bars
  • Use disposable menus or sanitize menus after each use.
Social Distancing:
  • Two bar stools should be left empty between customers not in the same party
  • Limit each table to six guests
  • Dining rooms should maintain six feet between tables
  • Offer cashless and contact less transactions whenever possible
Social distancing in all areas, from entryways, to restrooms, to the kitchen
Employees should wear face masks around other employees and customers
  • Proper hand-washing by employees
  • Sanitize:
  • High-contact areas (doorknobs, buttons, cooler doors, check-out counters) every two hours
  • Sanitize tables and seating after each guest.
  • Sanitize food contact surfaces after each use
  • Restrooms frequently

All classes through the end of May have been cancelled.  We expext to resume classes starting in June. 
Due to the mandatory class cancelations, extensions have been granted to CFM licenses
Evers Unveils Small Business Grant Program
Governor Evers announced today a grant program to assist small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Governor is planning to use $75 million from the federal CARES Act funding the state received to provide grants to small businesses to assist them with lost revenues, health and safety improvements, wages and salaries, and mortgages. Further details of the grant program will be announced later this month, and businesses can begin applying in June. Grants of up to $2,500 will be awarded to small businesses with 20 or fewer employees.
Grant recipients will become part of a new initiative called “We’re All In” by committing to and using safety protocols to protect their customers and employees. The Tavern League of Wisconsin applauds Governor Evers for this step to assist small businesses, as early on in the pandemic we called on using the CARES ACT to help small businesses recover from the economic disruption caused by COVID-19.
For additional information, please click here.

At the request of the Tavern League of Wisconsin, the Department of Revenue has announced relief for beer/liquor license holders from the state law governing credit from beer and liquor wholesalers. Under current law, licensees must pay beer wholesalers within 15 days, and liquor wholesalers within 30 days. Retailers who fall out of compliance may not receive additional shipments, nor may a municipality renew their license. This is an important change especially as it relates to license renewal. This waiver provides an exception to current law which prohibits a municipality from renewing a liquor/beer license for a licensee who is not in compliance with the state credit law. Under this waiver a municipality can renew a beer/liquor license even if the licensee is not in compliance with the 15/30 day credit law. This important change should ensure that all license holders have their license renewed for the coming year beginning on July 1, 2020.

The DOR is sending this information to the municipalities so they we will all be aware of this change. Thank you to Representatives Rob Swearingen, Tip McGuire and Tod Ohnstad for their help on this important issues as well as the cooperation of DOR Secretary Peter Barca and his staff. You can view the Guidance memo here

What Can You Do to Make Consumers Feel Safer?

New Morning Consult polling explores what protocols businesses can implement to make customers feel more comfortable in the pandemic environment. Regularly cleaning high-touch surfaces topped the list with support from 81 percent of recipients. Other popular protocols include installing hand sanitizer dispensers at 77 percent, spacing-out seating at 72 percent, enforcing capacity limits at 70 percent, and requiring all employees to wear face masks at 69 percent. Imposing temperature screenings for consumers received the lowest support at 57 percent.

 ASCAP and BMI Statement

BMI is sensitive to the fact that many businesses, large and small, are facing unprecedented challenges. Your partnership and the health of your business are vital to the livelihoods of the music creators we represent, and we are committed to helping you to welcome back your customers when the time is right. 
For those of you who use BMI, please click here for a link to fill out a form for those businesses impacted by COVID-19
As we all experience changes to our normal routines due to the coronavirus, we know that many of our licensees have seen a decline in business as a result of restrictions on gatherings and events. The corresponding loss of revenue by our customers impacts ASCAP's ability to support songwriters, composers and publisher members who rely on music performance royalties as their source of income to pay their bills and feed their families. As small business owners themselves, our community of songwriters, composers and music publishers sends you our supportive thoughts and best wishes as we face these challenges together.

We are closely monitoring how the virus is affecting our customers. If your business has been negatively impacted, please let us know by emailing us at glcs@ascap.com and we will make a note about the impact on your account to better understand how we could work together in partnership to get through this challenging time. We hope that you, your family and your friends stay healthy and safe.

We understand the challenges and hardships that our restaurant and bar customers are facing. That's why we are implementing the following procedures for immediate use by agent request.
Reduced General Liability Insurance Premiums for Restaurants & Bars
As restaurants and bars experience lower sales, agents may request a credit based on the policyholder's estimate of the sales reduction during a government order. Credit will be granted by agent request only and applies only to the General Liability premium. Simply confirm the estimated reduction in sales with your policyholder and submit the request to your underwriter.
To process this credit, we will need two pieces of information:
  1. The policyholder's estimate of the percent of sales reduction from the time when on-premises dining was prohibited by government order.
  2. The estimated amount of time the order will be in effect up to a maximum of 12 weeks. As of now, that order may go to the end of April.
Workers Compensation Payroll Reduction for Restaurants & Bars
As a reminder, we will accept endorsement requests for reductions in payroll. Please confirm the reduction with your policyholder and submit these requests to your underwriter.
We remain committed to supporting you and our mutual customers. Thanks for your support and partnership.

Resourceful Information Here 
Financial institutions have begun accepting SBA loan applications passed in the CARE Act.  If you are planning to apply for an SBA loan you will need the following:
  • 941 Payroll Tax Forms
  • 2 Years Tax Returns
  • Organizational Documents (Articles of Incorporation) if applicable
  • Beneficial Ownership information
  • Driver's License Information of each owner of 25% or more
  • Certificate of Good Standing, applications cannot be taken unless you are in good standing
  • Collect payroll, mortgage interest, utility, and rent expense information, month-by-month, for their last fiscal year
  • "Last fiscal year," but even the specific time period for which these expenses will need to be calcuated is not yet determined.  Start wil using the last 12-months or last fiscal year.
  • Input this information into an Excel file. 
  • Answers to commonly asked UC questions related to COVID-19 can be found here.
  • File your weekly claim here.
  • The DWD Handbook for claimants can be found here.
  • The Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development - Frequently Asked Questions Click Here
  • The Wisconsin Department of Health Services - COVID-19 Web Page Click Here
  • WEDC COVID-19 Resources Page Click Here
  • Internal Revenue Service: Information on Economic Impact Payments Click Here
  • For help using online services or if you are unable to go online call toll-free (844) 910-3661 between 7:35 AM and 3:30 PM on Monday thru Friday.


Employers with questions?
  • The DWD Handbook for employers can be found here
  • Employers, click here for a list of phone numbers for specific employer assistance. 

News Room


    On behalf of Beechwood Sales and Service and Anheuser-Busch we have made a $5,000 donation today to the C.H.E.E.R.S. Wisconsin Relief Fund. Our thoughts are with the members of the Tavern League of Wisconsin during this unprecedented time. This pandemic has had an adverse effect on all of our businesses and we hope that this donation and others will help members “bridge the gap” until the day they can reopen their doors. We look forward to once again seeing our friends who work in the taverns and restaurants in Wisconsin.

  • MADISON (WKOW) -- The push to reopen the state is gaining momentum as hundreds carry out protests across Wisconsin urging Governor Tony Evers to reconsider extending his safer at home order.

    The order is in effect until May 26, but bars and restaurants believe they can open their doors by taking safety measures to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus.

    President of the Tavern League of Wisconsin Chris Marsicano sent a letter to the governor outlining their safety precautions to reopen safely on May 1, claiming it would protect employees and customers.

  • The Tavern League of Wisconsin wants to thank Society Insurance for its’ $10,000 donation to our CHEERS fund. Society has been a longtime Corporate Sponsor at the Silver Level and has supported the TLW members through program discounts and participation at our trade shows. Thank you for your generous donation.

    For more information on CHEERS (Communities Helping Empower Employers Success) or to contribute please go to www.tlw.org/cheers

  • The Tavern League of Wisconsin and its members would like to thank S&S Distributing out of Sparta for their generous donation of $10,000 to our CHEERS fund. S&S has been a long time partner and supporter of the TLW and this donation will certainly help our efforts to build funding for CHEERS. S&S understands these are difficult times for the On Premise industry and that our success is their success.

    For more information on CHEERS (Communities Helping Empower Employers Success) or to contribute please go to www.tlw.org/cheers

  • The Tavern League of Wisconsin would like to recognize NEW GLARUS BREWERY and owner Deb Carey for their generous donation of $10,000 to the TLW’s CHEERS fund. Contributions like this are very important to the growth of this fund that will be shared by TLW members. Thanks again to NEW GLARUS BREWERY!

    Money raised through CHEERS will be divided equally among Tavern League members. If you care to learn more or would like to contribute please go to www.tlw.org/cheers


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