Good morning, Madison!
It's Thursday. What's up Thursday.
If you're a cat person you'll want to read this next part.
City Council on Tuesday unanimously voted to ban cat declawing in Madison.
The ordinance was introduced in September by Ald. Lindsay Lemmer, District 3, and garnered support from a number of groups locally and nationally, including the Madison Cat Project and the Humane Society of the United States. Removing a cat's claw is essentially the equivalent of severing a person's finger at the first knuckle.
“Today, every cat in Madison lands on its feet as we set an example for the rest of the state and join the numerous cities throughout the country that have already banned this archaic practice,” Lemmer said in a statement.
🚑 Wisconsin hospitals are so overwhelmed they're turning to FEMA for help.
- With hospitals around the state filling up, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services is asking the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to bring medical reserve teams to the state. The Cap Times reports as many as 100 federal health care workers could be on their way to assist hospitals across the state.
- What's causing the stress? COVID-19 is to blame. But it isn't the omicron variant doing the damage, it's delta, and it's ravaging through unvaccinated populations. Currently, all 72 counties in the state have "high" levels of COVID-19 transmission.
- Dig deeper: A chronic covid condition (PBS Wisconsin)
🖋️ Longtime Democratic state Sen. Jon Erpenbach will not seek re-election.
- Erpenbach was first elected in 1998 and has represented Wisconsin’s 27th Senate District for more than two decades. His district includes most of western Dane County, northern Green County, eastern Iowa County, eastern Sauk County, and parts of western Columbia County. He served as Senate minority leader from 2003 to 2005.
💻 City Council meetings will stay virtual, despite what the mayor wants.
- The council voted 13-6 Tuesday night to keep their meetings virtual through "late May," the Cap Times reports. Though Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway said holding meetings virtually for this long — the council has met virtually since March 2020 — has been “incredibly detrimental” to the council's functioning. She instead has pushed for a hybrid meeting model.
- Ironically enough, Madison was just recognized with a Digital Cities Award in part for its work to build a virtual model for its public meetings. In the press release announcing the award, Rhodes-Conway was quoted saying "Resident engagement is more important than ever, and virtual public meetings has allowed us to stay connected with our residents during these trying times.” So take that as you will.
👮 Speaking of City Council, police body-worn cameras are back up for debate.
- Members of the council introduced a resolution Tuesday that would authorize a one-year body-worn camera pilot program for officers in the North District.
- According to WKOW, The 2021 capital budget set aside $83,000 for 48 cameras, equipment, and training. The council could vote on the full resolution next month but citizens will likely have a lot to say about the matter.
🎨 Have you been to Dark Horse ArtBar yet?
- The space sits in the former Star Bar location on East Washington and brings together "printmaking, pop art, and a variety of music." In a recent review of the new spot, Tone Madison explains the bar's owner — who also operates Salvatore’s Tomato Pies next door — wants people to think of the space as gallery first and a bar second.
🎲 Goodbye PoweNine Games, hello Gamer’s Library.
- After 20 years in its current location, Power Nine Games will close its doors and re-open at a new location on the 400 block of State Street with the name Gamer's Library, The Badger Herald reports.
- The change was sparked in part by the departure of the store's owner. Renovation on the new location is set to begin in the coming weeks with the hope of opening in February 2022. The new space will include accessibility upgrades and will host Magic the Gathering events, Dungeons and Dragons games, and weekly board game nights.
🏀 Badger men's basketball made a dramatic comeback to take down the Indiana Hoosiers.
- Wisconsin was down by 22 points but thanks to Johnny Davis and his 23 points (8-of-17 from the floor), nine rebounds, and one assist, the Badgers managed a 64-59 win over the Hoosiers.
⛵ The city is in a race against time to get a stranded boat out of Lake Monona.
- Sorry, What? A 52-foot-long former cruising boat has been tied up at Marshall Park harbor on the West Side since August. The city has ticketed the owner 71 times (!!!) since Aug. 18 totaling $8,800 in fines. The State Journal reports City Council granted the Parks Division the authority to remove the boat Thursday if the owner doesn't do it themself since ice is starting to form on the lake.
🧑⚕️ Your lunchtime read: Madison school nurses adjust to pandemic challenges.
- From the Cap Times: "School nurses have been on the front lines of the pandemic as schools reopened. While their responsibilities can differ slightly by school district and even school buildings, many are tasked with contact tracing, new administrative duties and telling families their lives are about to be interrupted for the next 10 days."
- Related: COVID cases in Madison schools reach semester high over past week (Cap Times)
🦠 Covid-19 Resources
Wisconsin Vaccination Rate: 56.2%
Dane County Vaccination Rate: 72.7%
Here's where to find a COVID-19 vaccine near you.
Need a COVID-19 test? PHMDC has you covered.
Do you still need your flu shot? Start here.
📅 Events: Thursday, Dec. 9
- Storytime with The Nutcracker cast at Madison Children's Museum. "Join our friends from Madison Ballet for a reading of the Nutcracker story, followed by a meet & greet and photos with the Sugar Plum Fairy and the Nutcracker Prince." 10 a.m. Free with admission.
- Wisconsin’s Sea Grant’s “Lake Talks" with Moheb Soliman. Online, 7 p.m. Free. 🟠
- Hour Of Code with BadgerBots. Free coding workshop for kids ages 7-12. 6:30 p.m.
- State of the Museum. Chazen Director Amy Gilman presents her third annual State of the Museum. 6:30 p.m. Virtual option.
- Mystery Science Theater 3000 LIVE: Time Bubble Tour at the Overture. Tickets start at $35.
- Arlo Mckinley with Jeremy Pinnell at High Noon Saloon. Doors at 7 p.m. show at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $15.
- Charlie Painter Trio at Cafe CODA. 7 p.m. $10.
🟠 = Tone recommends
Wondering what that 🟠 means? That symbol next to an event listing means that Tone Madison’s team of writers and editors recommends checking it out. Tone knows Madison’s arts and music landscape better than anybody else.
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(Header image courtesy of Hayley Sperling, that's my cat Billie Jo 😻)