Want to go shopping again? Well, now you—and four other people—can.

On Monday afternoon, Gov. Tony Evers and Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) Secretary-designee Andrea Palm unveiled Emergency Order #36, which “allows all standalone or strip-mall based retail stores to offer in-person shopping for up to five customers at a time while maintaining required social distancing practices.” Face masks for both staff and customers are strongly encouraged.

The order, written with small and non-essential businesses in mind, goes into effect immediately.

“In addition to added flexibilities and steps we have already taken for businesses, this is another disciplined turn of the dial that will allow Wisconsin’s business owners to safely get back to work and Wisconsin consumers to support their favorite local spots,” said Gov. Evers in a press release. “Both customers and workers need to be confident in their safety, so we need everyone to be diligent in following best safety practices so we can continue to move our state forward while keeping our neighbors, families, and communities safe and healthy.”

Also reopened: drive-in movie theaters! As long as you stay in your car and you only leave to buy concessions or use the restroom, you’re cool. New York also reopened drive-in movie theaters today. YOUR MOVE, HIGHWAY 18 OUTDOOR THEATRE IN JEFFERSON.

Here’s the full order:

NOW THEREFORE, I, Andrea Palm, Department of Health Services Secretary-designee, by the authority vested in me by the Laws of the State, including but not limited to Section 252.02(3), (4), and (6) of the Wisconsin Statutes, order the following:

1. Minimum Basic Operations. Minimum Basic Operations is defined by Section 14 of Emergency Order #28, Safer at Home Order, and Section 1 of Emergency Order #34, Interim Order to Turn the Dial, and shall additionally include the following:

a. In-person retail. Standalone or strip mall-based retail stores with an entrance or entrances to the outside may offer in-person shopping for up to five customers at a time. Any entrances through a mall or interconnected passage must be closed to the public. Stores relying exclusively on mall or interconnected passage entrances may not offer in-person retail under this section. Face coverings are strongly encouraged for all staff and customers. Social Distancing Requirements, as defined in Section 16 of Emergency Order #28 Safer at Home Order, must be observed at all times. If the retail store is unable for any reason to observe Social Distancing Requirements between all customers and staff, the store must limit its occupancy to less than five customers to ensure observance with Social Distancing Requirements.

All stores operating under this section must comply with Sections 2.b.ii.2., 2.b.ii.3., and 2.b.ii.4. of Emergency Order #28, the Safer at Home Order. Additionally, all stores operating under this section must establish lines outside the store to regulate entry with markings indicating where customers should stand to remain six feet apart from one another while waiting to enter. Stores should also use alternatives to lines, including allowing customers to wait in their cars for a text message or phone call and scheduling pickups or entries to the store.

2. Places of public amusement and activity. The closure of places of public amusement and activity is defined by Section 4.c. of Emergency Order #28 Safer at Home Order, and shall additionally include the following exception:

a. Drive-in movie theaters may open, with the following restrictions:

I. Drive-in theaters may not offer outdoor seating.

II. Patrons may leave their vehicles to purchase or pick up food or drink from the theater or to use the restroom. Patrons must remain in their vehicles at all other times.

III. Any food or drink sales must comply with Section 13.d. and 13.e. of the Safer at Home Order.

IV. Drive in theaters may deliver food to patrons waiting in their vehicles.

V. To the extent possible, reservations and payments should be made in advance online or over the phone.

3. Safe Business Practices. Required safe business practices for all businesses, including Essential Businesses and Operations, is defined by Section 2.b.i. of the Safer at Home Order, and shall additionally including the following:

a. All businesses shall review the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation guidelines on safe business practices, available here: https://wedc.org/reopen-guidelines/. Businesses must consider integrating and adopting the applicable guidelines for the operations that are currently permitted under the Safer at Home Order.

4. Safer at Home and Badger Bounce Back remains in effect. Emergency Orders #28, #31, and #34 remain in effect and are modified only by the specific additions described in this Order.

5. Duration. This Order is effective immediately and shall remain in effect for the duration of the Safer at Home Order.

6. Severability. If any provision of this Order or its application to any person or circumstance is held to be invalid, then the remainder of the Order, including the application of such part or provision to other persons or circumstances, shall not be affected and shall continue in full force and effect. To this end, the provisions of this Order are severable.

7. Supremacy. This Order supersedes any local order that is in conflict with this order.

About The Author

Matt Wild
Co-Founder and Editor

Matt Wild weighs between 140 and 145 pounds. He lives on Milwaukee's east side.

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