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Wisconsin appeals court rules Evers' COVID-19 order is 'invalid and unenforceable'

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Posted at 3:57 PM, Nov 06, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-06 19:20:18-05

MADISON — Wisconsin's Third District Court of Appeals has ruled that Gov. Tony Evers' order that limits indoor capacity is "invalid and unenforceable."

Executive Order #3 limits public gatherings indoors to 25 percent capacity across the state. The order was set to conclude on Friday.

The order, which has been allowed and then blocked amid several lawsuits, has not been in effect since an appeals court blocked it on Oct. 24. It was first issued by the governor's office on Oc. 6.

The decision comes as Wisconsin tallies a record-breaking 6,141 new coronavirus cases on Friday.

"This is another blow to our state's response to this pandemic and our efforts to keep Wisconsinites safe," Evers said in a statement. "We will continue challenging this decision, but the bottom line is that we can’t wait for the courts to figure this out—we need Wisconsinites to stay home and mask up, and it has to start today. It’s the only way we will get this virus under control and ensure our economy can recover.”

The Tavern League sued the administration in early October, arguing that the capacity order would lead many businesses in the state into economic ruin. A judge in Sawyer County decided to block Evers' order on Oct. 14. A judge in Barron County then unblocked the order almost a week later.

The Barron County judge's decision then led to an appeal from an Amery, Wisconsin bar and Pro-Life Wisconsin.

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