Updates from the First Day of the Special Session

  • The Governor’s emergency rule targeting small businesses with a Class A Misdemeanor was withdrawn. However, Sen. Bill Cunningham has said he plans to file legislation instead. I’ll provide an update if that bill is filed so we can keep up the pressure against it.
  • The Governor announced some loosened restrictions when regions of the state move into phase 3 of his Restore Illinois plan – anticipated on May 29: restaurants will able to have outdoor seating (this is a big win for many businesses in District 64, but only a small step in the right direction), all state parks will open, and expanded reopening of other outdoor activities like tennis and golf. Barbershops, salons and outdoor fitness classes were already part of this phase.
  • Boating: The third phase also allows social gatherings up to 10 people, and the Governor touted that boating has been added to this. However, I haven’t found anything in his Restore Illinois plan that prevented boating with up to 10 people in phase 3 and this merely looks like he is trying to curry favor after the backlash over the arbitrary 2 person limit in place now.

So far, the House has taken up a rule change for face coverings to be worn by members and a shell bill to send to the Senate for what will likely be a grossly unbalanced budget. All of this points to the fact that we need to have, not only the budget but the Governor’s Restore Illinois plan brought before the General Assembly for a vote. These arbitrary changes by one man need to stop and the legislature, as the co-equal branch of government closest to the people, needs to be a full participant in the reopening and spending affecting our state! Illinoisans deserve nothing less!

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