Browsing Tag

Gov. J.B. Pritzker

$1.3M in COVID-19 relief awarded to rural Illinois communities

Staff Report SPRINGFIELD - Gov. J.B. Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO), on Friday, announced the first round of grants awarded as part of the new Downstate Small Business Stabilization Program. The fund was created to support small businesses in downstate and rural counties across Illinois that have experienced a negative impact due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. "As businesses across Illinois grapple with the devastating financial…

Pritzker adds five counties to disaster proclamation

Staff Report CHICAGO - Gov. J.B. Pritzker added five counties to an existing disaster proclamation Wednesday to aid local jurisdictions in their efforts to keep communities safe. Lake, Peoria, Rock Island, Williamson and Stephenson counties were added to the edict because they represent a threat for looting or destruction through planned protests. To date, 15 counties are included in the current disaster proclamation. Pritzker activated 375 Illinois National Guard soldiers Sunday to…

Governor declares disaster in 9 Illinois counties

Staff Report CHICAGO - Illinois Gov.  J.B. Pritzker on Monday signed a disaster proclamation for nine counties in Illinois to expedite the use of state resources, personnel and equipment to help municipalities keep residents safe from looters and rioters. The counties include Champaign, Cook, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Macon, Madison, Sangamon and Will. The Governor also activated an additional 250 members of the Illinois National Guard to support various jurisdictions throughout the state in…

J.B. Pritzker: Donald Trump is a racist, misogynist, homophobe and xenophobe

By Jim Hagerty Reporter CHICAGO - Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker minced no words Friday when asked about President Donald Trump's tweets regarding the death of George Floyd and rioting that's erupted in Minneapolis. "From the very moment I announced my decision to run for governor three plus years ago, I said that this president is a racist, a misogynist, a homophobe, a xenophobe," Pritzker said. "I was right then, and I am right now." Pritzker was responding to tweets in which Trump accused…

Restore Illinois: Pritzker walks back restrictions on church services

By Jim Hagerty Reporter CHICAGO - Illinois houses of worship are no longer restricted by Gov. JB Pritzker's "Restore Illinois" plan. Instead, the governor's office, on Thursday, released non-mandatory guidelines for places of worship to reopen, including recommendations for indoor services. The state recommends outdoor worship gatherings including drive-in services, where congregants remain inside vehicles, and indoor meetings of 10 people or fewer. However, for churches where those…

Illinois lawmakers forego vote on governor’s pandemic authority

By Greg Bishop SPRINGFIELD - While they passed a budget, expanded mail-in-voting and even approved cocktails to go amid a pandemic, Illinois state lawmakers didn’t provide a check on the governor’s authority to reshape the state’s economy. The Illinois General Assembly was scheduled for three days last week, but ran into overtime ending in the wee hours of Sunday. Things that were top of mind just a handful of months ago were left on the cutting room floor. Lawmakers passed a $40…

DOJ: Illinois coronavirus restrictions ‘appear to reach far beyond’ governor’s authority

By Jim Hagerty Reporter WASHINGTON, D.C. - Although he means well, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker's stay-at-home orders may exceed this authority to keep parts of the state closed amid the coronavirus pandemic. That is the opinion of the U.S. Department of Justice, which filed a statement of interest in federal court Friday in an attempt to become a party to the lawsuit filed by Illinois Rep. Darren Bailey, who is challenging the constitutionality of Pritzker's executive order. "However…

Senate GOP leader files bill to reopen Illinois businesses by June 1

By Cole Lauterbach SPRINGFIELD - Illinois Senate Minority Leader Bill Brady, R-Bloomington, has filed a measure that would require state officials to allow businesses to reopen next month, in addition to restricting Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s emergency declaration powers. “The proposal put forward by the Illinois Chamber (of Commerce) is an important step in moving the discussion forward on how we safely reopen our state and get our economy moving forward more quickly,” he said. The language…

Rep. Darren Bailey tossed from session for not wearing mask, Pritzker not impressed

By Jim Hagerty Reporter ROCKFORD - A state lawmaker who filed a lawsuit against the governor over the constitutionality of the coronavirus stay-at-home order was escorted out of a legislative session Wednesday for not wearing a face covering. After the House voted 97-12 for legislators to wear masks and Speaker Michael Madigan warned that anyone who does not comply could be removed, Rep. Darren Bailey said he was not going to follow the rule. The process to remove the Xenia Republican then…

Online grocery ordering approved for 1.8M SNAP recipients

Staff Report SPRINGFIELD - Gov. J.B. Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Human Services on Wednesday, announced the state's plan to enable 1.8 million SNAP recipients to purchase food from participating grocery retailers online has been approved by the federal government. The new purchasing option will begin on June 2. All Link customers will be alerted when they can use their card to make food orders online. "To keep more families safe and healthy, my administration is expanding…

Pritzker withdraws order that criminalizes stay-at-home violations

By Jim Hagerty Reporter SPRINGFIELD - Gov. J.B. Pritzker withdrew an emergency rule that made businesses subject to criminal prosecution if they opened earlier than specified in the state's plan to restart the economy. According to members of the bi-partisan Joint Committee on Administrative Rules that Pritzker withdrew the measure Wednesday as lawmakers convened at the Capitol. The move was pushed largely by Republicans, who argued that the order exceeds the governor's authority to…

Pritzker criminalizes stay-at-home violations, Rep. John Cabello responds

By Jim Hagerty Reporter CHICAGO - Illinois businesses could now face jail time if they violate rules under Gov. J.B. Pritzker "stay-at-home" executive order. Pritzker filed an amendment to Illinois' public health laws Friday to include the section, "Pandemic or Epidemic Respiratory Disease -- Emergency Provisions." The section states restaurants are limited to carryout, and that gyms, salons and tattoo shops must close during a disease outbreak. Businesses owners who defy this law…

J.B. Pritzker not shaken by Wisconsin Supreme Court ruling

By Jim Hagerty Reporter CHICAGO - Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker responded Thursday to the Wisconsin Supreme Court decision that did away with Gov. Tony Evers' "Safer at Home" extension. Though he expressed concern that Wisconsin's order blew up, he expects his stay-at-home edict that expires at the end of the month and restrictions laid out in his five-phase Restore Illinois plan to remain in place. "We’re well within the laws that exist in Illinois to have a disaster declaration, and there’s…

Pritzker issues more warnings for businesses that open before COVID-19 restrictions expire

By Jim Hagerty Reporter ROCKFORD - Gov. J.B. Pritzker issued more warnings Wednesday for businesses that open before executive orders issued during the COVID-19 outbreak expire. Repeating that businesses that are regulated by the state could have their licensees suspended for opening too soon, the governor added a call for local leaders to step up and prevent citizens from defying the stay-at-home edict that expires at the end of this month and the restrictions in his "Restore Illinois"…

State Sen. Dave Syverson weighs in on governor’s COVID-19 plan: ‘Open businesses’

By Jim Hagerty Reporter ROCKFORD - Illinois Sen. Dave Syverson (R-Rockford), has weighed in the impact COVID-19 restrictions are having on the economy. "We are just now starting to see the warned about social impacts as a result of these leader’s decisions to shut the state down as they did," Syverson said in his May 12 E-Newsletter. "Disturbing data is emerging that, during the lock-down, we are seeing increases in depression, domestic violence, drug and alcohol use, suicide, and child…