KENOSHA, Wis. (CBS) — Kenosha County announced Thursday night that it is withdrawing its local actions that kept a stay-at-home order in place after the one in effect statewide in Wisconsin was overturned by the state’s Supreme Court.
Health officer Dr. Jen Freiheit announced Thursday night that the move allows Kenosha County – which sits right across the state line from Lake County, Illinois – to reopen without any risk of penalty or prosecution.
But Freiheit and other local officials advised that people keep following the guidance of the Wisconsin stay-at-home order that was overturned until its original expiration of May 26.
Kenosha County Corporation Counsel Joseph Cardamone said he had received guidance from the Wisconsin Counties Association’s legal arm late Thursday that the state Supreme Court’s ruling also applied to local health officers.
“The Supreme Court’s order caused a great deal of confusion and uncertainty last night that left us and others across the state struggling to determine how to abide by the ruling while continuing to protect the public’s safety amid the COVID-19 pandemic,” Cardamone said in a news release. “Tonight, with varying guidance from the Wisconsin Counties Association and more time to review best practices moving forward, together we’ve determined that we will withdraw our order and instead view Safer-at Home as a series of best practices, rather than requirements.”
Freiheit emphasized that Kenosha County remains “far from being out of the woods with COVID-19,” and people need to go on taking the threat seriously.
Other Wisconsin jurisdictions are keeping coronavirus-related restrictions in place regardless of the Supreme Court ruling. The City of Milwaukee will not be changing its public health order that dates back to March.
“The City of Milwaukee Health Department issued a public health order on March 25, 2020 to protect public health and reduce the spread of Covid-19. That order remains in effect, including all provisions on public gatherings, restaurants, and bar operations,” Mayor Tom Barrett was quoted by CBS affiliate WDJT-TV.