Today’s updates discusses Madison County’s decision to reopen despite the statewide stay-at-home order. Additionally, this update discusses Governor Pritzker calling for the General Assembly to reconvene and a DCEO grant program for infrastructure projects. Finally, the update discusses two more lawsuits filed against Governor Pritzker.
- As mentioned as a possibility in yesterday’s post, the Madison County Board of Health voted last evening to allow its economy to reopen, despite Governor Pritzker’s stay-at-home order. It and Adams County are the only counties in the state to vote to reopen their economies. The Board voted 26-2 in favor of the resolution and reopening guidelines. The resolution includes a four-phase approach, with phase one beginning today. The City of Collinsville, however, issued a press release stating the City would abide by the State Department of Health guidelines and urged local businesses to do the same. Several businesses in Edwardsville and other areas of the county posted on social media or on other platforms that they intend to remain open only for delivery and curbside service for now. For access to the recommended guidelines for reopening, visit https://cms4.revize.com/revize/madisoncounty/document_center/County%20News%20Home/MADCO%20Reopen%20Guidelines%20Final.pdf. For access to the resolution for reopening, visit https://cms4.revize.com/revize/madisoncounty/document_center/County%20News%20Home/MADCO%20Re-Open%20resolution%20Final%20.pdf.
- Governor Pritzker has called for the Illinois General Assembly to reconvene expeditiously before the end of May to work on issues related to rebuilding Illinois’ economy. Additionally, the Governor is asking the General Assembly to provide support to families, small businesses, and towns, including rent and mortgage assistance, tax credits, and financial support. For more information, visit https://www.nbcchicago.com/news/coronavirus/pritzker-calls-on-state-legislature-to-convene-to-address-budget-small-business-relief/2270854/.
- Governor Pritzker also announced a $25 million “fast-track” grants program through the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (“DCEO”). This program is designed to help local governments move forward with public infrastructure projects and stems from the $50 million program “Rebuild Illinois.” Starting now, “local governments with shovel ready projects – including school districts, townships, and other entities – can apply for this funding.” For more information, visit https://www.wjol.com/pritzker-administration-announces-25-million-fast-track-grants-to-accelerate-planned-infrastructure-projects-in-the-wake-of-covid-19/.
- Greenville attorney Tom DeVore, who filed at least three prior well-known lawsuits against Governor Pritzker for the statewide stay-at-home order, represents several other businesses across the state. Mr. DeVore has filed two other lawsuits this week for two bars, one in a town on the Iowa border and one in southern Illinois, alleging the stay-at-home order overstepped the Governor’s authority and violates the state’s constitution. Pritzker responded to each of these lawsuits, stating that local counties and cities defying his stay-at-home order are “not relying on science in any way whatsoever to make their decisions.” For more information, visit https://www.chicagotribune.com/coronavirus/ct-coronavirus-illinois-attorney-lawsuits-businesses-20200512-li5alihcdfehlk7f37pjpvk6qi-story.html.
HeplerBroom attorney Emilee M. Bramstedt contributed to this blog post.