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Letter to State Legislature on New Executive Order - Chris Marsicano

April 16, 2020

Dear TLW Member:
 
Please see the email below that went out to all state legislators this morning.
 
Dear Legislator:
There has to be a better way to wage the war against Covid 19 than bankrupting my business, destroying my livelihood and having to fire my employees. I will have been closed to regular business for 70 days on May 26th. Not surprisingly, I cannot survive under these conditions – very few of us can.
 
Wisconsin’s May 26th Stay at Home Order end date is the latest in the country.
 
We all want to be safe and have a safe environment to live, work and play. Many businesses are currently open and safely operating in Wisconsin. Wisconsin has just over 3500 Covid 19 cases and has recorded 170 deaths. In Wisconsin, 78% of Covid 19 cases are from 6 counties, while 47 counties currently have 10 or fewer cases. New York has over 220,000 cases and 14,636 deaths. Wisconsin’s Stay at Home Order is until May 26 while New York’s Stay at Home Order expires May 15th. Iowa which has no Stay at Home Order has recorded 1849 cases and 49 deaths.
 
The length of Midwest Stay at Home Orders
  • Indiana – April 20
  • Michigan – April 30
  • Illinois – April 30
  • Ohio - May 1
  • Minnesota – May 4
  • Iowa – No Order
  • Wisconsin – May 26
 
The Tavern League of Wisconsin repeatedly reached out to Governor Evers to attempt to find a workable solution to implement a soft opening on April 24th to accommodate our employees and customers. Unfortunately, we never heard back from the Governor on any of our proposals. Today,
I need your help. Maybe the Governor will listen to you.
 
The following is a list of options we provided to the Governor.
  • Permit on premise business if all of the following apply
  • All employees wear masks and gloves
  • 6ft distancing applies to all seating
  • Hours of operation for on premise business 11 – 2 and 4-8
  • Only 50% capacity allowed on premise
  • Outdoor eating and drinking with 6 ft distancing permitted on property of licensed establishment
  • Permit outdoor operations.
  • Allow Class B retailers to deliver alcohol in age verified purchase via phone or online only during the Order
  • Permit cocktails to go during the Order
  • Suspend sales tax collection and late penalties and remittance during the Order
  • Suspend 15 – 30 day credit law during the Order
  • Extend all licenses 1 year until June 30, 2021
  • Prohibit cancellation of satellite, cable, and any other vendor directly related to the licensed establishment
  • Create a Hospitality Bridge Grant for Wisconsin’s taverns and restaurants.
 
With a small portion of the federal $1.9 billion CARE Act money - Create Hospitality Bridge Grant of $50,000 tax free for every licensed establishment in Wisconsin. Unlike the federal PPP grant have the HBG Simple and quick no red tape. Grant money to licensed establishments will save their business and immediately pump money into the state’s struggling economy.
 
The Tavern League is usually on the front lines to help those in our communities who are struggling. Last year we helped to raise over $13 million for local charitable causes. Today we are the ones who need help. Please talk to Governor Evers to change this Stay at Home Order before it is too late for my business and employees.
 
Sincerely,
 
Chris Marsicano, President
Tavern League of Wisconsin
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