Hayward City Council Will Take Up Resolutions Urging Governor to Open Hayward for Business
Updated: May 8, 2020
By Joe Morey
The Hayward City Council is set to vote on three resolutions they will send to Governor Tony Evers regarding opening local businesses, parks, churches and non-profit organizations.
Council Member Jim Miller told LCO News that a discussion was held at their regular meeting on Monday, May 4, on a plan to reopen Hayward. Miller said the Governor had authority to issue the public emergency, per the Wisconsin State Constitution, for a time of 60 days.
Under Wisconsin Statute 252.02, Miller said the city doesn’t have any authority to tell businesses they can open because the state controls their licenses and permits.
Miller explained the three resolutions are meant to urge the governor and state legislature to open the City of Hayward for business. The City Council will take up the resolutions at this Monday’s meeting, May 11.
Following the passing of the resolutions, Hayward Mayor Charlie Munich will submit a letter to the governor with the resolutions.
Miller stated one of the city’s arguments is that the governor does not have authority to close local parks. He has the authority to close state parks, but not city parks.
The first resolution urges the state to lift restrictions and allow City of Hayward businesses, churches, non-profit organizations to immediately open to normal pre-shutdown operating capacities. The second resolution declares the city parks and trails are open to the public because they are owned and maintained by the city and funded by its taxpayers for the enjoyment of its residents.
And finally, the third resolution states, “The department may close schools and forbid public gatherings in schools, churches and other public places to control outbreaks and epidemics.”
The resolution further states, “If the building, vessel, conveyance, mental health institution or school is privately owned the state shall pay the expenses that the agent incurs. Therefore, be it resolved, the City of Hayward shall defer to the State of Wisconsin for enforcement of the Government’s emergency order, and; The City of Hayward shall allocate no resources for enforcement of such order.”
"This is a unilateral decision by the governor and his secretary-designee based on an argument of public health," Miller said. "DHS should be responsible for enforcement, not local police."