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Executive Order 2020-07


March 16, 2020



WHEREAS, in late 2019, a new and significant outbreak of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) emerged; and,

WHEREAS, COVID-19 is a novel severe acute respiratory illness that can spread among people through respiratory transmissions and present with symptoms similar to those of influenza; and,

WHEREAS, certain populations are at higher risk of experiencing more severe illness as a result of COVID-19, including older adults and people who have serious chronic medical conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, or lung disease; and,

WHEREAS, despite efforts to contain COVID-19, the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) indicate that it is expected to spread; and,

WHEREAS, in communities with confirmed COVID-19 cases, the CDC currently recommends mitigation measures, including practicing social distancing, staying at home when sick, staying home when a household member is sick with respiratory disease symptoms or when instructed to do so by public health officials or a health care provider, and keeping away from others who are sick; and,

WHEREAS, the CDC currently recommends the cancellation or postponement of in-person events that consist of 50 people or more; and,

WHEREAS, social distancing, which consists of maintain at least a six-foot distance between people, is the paramount strategy for minimizing the spread of COVID-19 in our communities; and,

WHEREAS, the Illinois Department of Public Health recommends Illinois residents avoid group dining in public settings, such as in bars and restaurants, which usually involves prolonged close social contact contrary to recommended practice for social distancing; and,

WHEREAS, frequently used surfaces in public settings, including bars and restaurants, if not cleaned and disinfected frequently and properly, also pose a risk of exposure; and,

WHEREAS, current testing availability has identified further spread of confirmed cases throughout the State of Illinois, and it is expected that increased testing capacity would demonstrate that COVID-19 is circulating in communities across Illinois that currently have not identified a confirmed case; and,

WHEREAS, the number of suspected COVID-19 cases in Illinois is increasing exponentially and across more locations in Illinois, indicating that drastic social distancing measures are needed, even in communities where confirmed cases have not yet been identified, to reduce the number of people who become sick at any given time and the possibility of exhausting our health care resources; and,

WHEREAS, the ongoing spread of COVID-19 and the danger the virus poses to the public’s health and wellness require the reduction of on-premises consumption of food and beverages; and,

WHEREAS, State agencies have been directed to temporarily reduce activities and workforce to core mission functions and essential operations, encouraging working remotely where possible; and,

WHEREAS, the Liquor Control Act of 1934, 235 ILCS 5, “shall be liberally construed, to the end that the health, safety, and welfare of the People of the State of Illinois shall be protected”; and,

WHEREAS, I, JB Pritzker, Governor of Illinois, declared all counties in the State of Illinois as a disaster area on March 9, 2020 (“Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation”); and,

WHEREAS, on March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization characterized the COVID-19 outbreak as a pandemic; and,

WHEREAS, it is necessary and appropriate for the State of Illinois to immediately take measures to protect the public’s health in response to this COVID-19 outbreak;

THEREFORE, by the powers vested in me as the Governor of the State of Illinois, and pursuant to Sections 7(1), 7(2), 7(3), and 7(8) of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency Act, 20 ILCS 3305, I hereby order the following:

Section 1. Beginning March 16, 2020 at 9 p.m. through March 30, 2020, all businesses in the State of Illinois that offer food or beverages for on-premises consumption—including restaurants, bars, grocery stores, and food halls—must suspend service for and may not permit on-premises consumption. Such businesses are permitted and encouraged to serve food and beverages so that they may be consumed off-premises, as currently permitted by law, through means such as in-house delivery, third-party delivery, drive-through, and curbside pick-up. In addition, customers may enter the premises to purchase food or beverages for carry-out However, establishments offering food or beverages for carry-out, including food trucks, must ensure that they have an environment where patrons maintain adequate social distancing. Businesses located in airports, hospitals, and dining halls in colleges and universities are exempt from the requirements of this Executive Order. Hotel restaurants may continue to provide room service and carry-out. Catering services may continue.

Section 2. Beginning March 18, 2020, all public and private gatherings in the State of Illinois of 50 people or more are prohibited for the duration of the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation. A public or private gathering includes community, civic, public leisure, faith-based events, sporting events with spectators, concerts, conventions, and any similar event or activity that brings together 50 or more people in a single room or a single space at the same time. This includes venues such as fitness centers/health clubs, bowling alleys, private clubs, and theatres. This does not include venues that provide essential goods or services such as grocery stores, hospitals, pharmacies, gas stations, banks/credit unions, and shelters. This order amends Section 1 of EO 2020-04, which prohibited gatherings of 1,000 people or more.

Section 3. Pursuant to Sections 7(2) and 7(3) of the Illinois Emergency Management Act, the Illinois State Police, the Illinois Department of Public Health, the State Fire Marshal, and the Illinois Liquor Control Commission are directed to cooperate with one another and to use available resources to enforce the provisions of this Executive Order with respect to entities under their jurisdiction under Illinois law.

Section 4. Nothing in this Executive Order shall amend or supersede the authority of the Illinois Department of Public Health pursuant to Section 2310-15 of the Department of Public Health Powers and Duties Law, 20 ILCS 2310/2310-15.

Section 5. During the duration of the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation, the provision of the Unemployment Insurance Act, 820 ILCS 405/500(D), requiring a one-week waiting period for unemployment insurance claims is suspended for claimants who are unemployed and who are otherwise eligible for unemployment insurance benefits.

Section 6. During the duration of the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation, the provisions of the Open Meetings Act, 5 ILCS 120, requiring or relating to in-person attendance by members of a public body are suspended. Specifically, (1) the requirement in 5 ILCS 120/2.01 that “members of a public body must be physically present” is suspended; and (2) the conditions in 5 ILCS 120/7 limiting when remote participation is permitted are suspended. Public bodies are encouraged to postpone consideration of public business where possible. When a meeting is necessary, public bodies are encouraged to provide video, audio, and/or telephonic access to meetings to ensure members of the public may monitor the meeting, and to update their websites and social media feeds to keep the public fully apprised of any modifications to their meeting schedules or the format of their meetings due to COVID-19, as well their activities relating to COVID-19.

Issued by the Governor March 16, 2020
Filed by the Secretary of State March 16, 2020