(PRESS RELEASE) WAUSAU — The Greater Wausau Chamber of Commerce has been in dialogue with Marathon County’s administrator, corporate counsel and public health officer regarding their efforts to develop a COVID-19 ordinance.
The Chamber’s board of directors adopted a formal motion last week against the draft ordinance that was presented to the Chamber and then approved by the Marathon County Health and Human Services Committee. The Chamber made note in its communications to the administrator, ahead of the committee meeting, that the organization would not support the draft which was moved forward.
At the Chamber board of director’s meeting held on June 4, formal action was taken to adopt the Chamber’s position against the draft ordinance. Notice of this action was sent via email to Marathon County Administrator Lance Leonard and Marathon County Board Chair Kurt Gibbs.
The Greater Wausau Chamber of Commerce will not support the draft COVID-19 ordinance as written. The ordinance contains ambiguous and subjective language, empowers one individual to unilaterally order a business to close, and is not supported by law. The ordinance as written deserves to see the light of day so that there may be greater transparency in the enacting ordinances.
The Greater Wausau Chamber of Commerce has retained legal counsel to analyze the proposed ordinance. Based on this review, counsel has identified a number of legal issues. On behalf of the Chamber, legal counsel has submitted a letter to the County Board identifying these issues.
While the Greater Wausau Chamber of Commerce has no particular interest in a costly legal dispute, if the County enacts this ordinance, the Chamber will seek any and all legal remedies available to it and its members.