Included below: new executive order, workers’ compensation case, and more.
Governor JB Pritzker announced he will issue a new Executive Order next week. Pursuant to the Illinois Emergency Management Act, the Governor can only declare a state of emergency in 30-day periods. The new Executive Order will become effective May 1st and remain in effect through May 30th. Pursuant to the Governor’s description, the new EO will have the following impact on Illinois retailers:
- new occupancy limitations (i.e.metering) will be imposed on ‘essential businesses’. As described orally to IRMA, retailers can limit occupancy to 50% of occupancy limit or 5 people per 1,000 square feet.
- so-called ‘non-essential businesses’ will be allowed to engage in curbside delivery for phone or Internet orders. This will be in addition to the ability to ship or deliver from their stores.
- greenhouses, nurseries, and garden centers will be allowed to open but must apply the social distancing
Additionally, the general public will be required to wear facial coverings when in public. Presumably, this means retail employees must also wear facial coverings when at work. The Governor did describe an exception for those who are under 2-years of age and those who are medically unable to wear facial coverings.
In a briefing late yesterday, IRMA was told the following would also be included:
- one-way aisles would be required. IRMA noted that while some retailers have implemented, some have found this actually increases the amount of time individuals spend in the store.
- commercial evictions would be temporarily suspended.
- local governments will not be preempted meaning local governments could impose different requirements.
However, the Governor did not reference these today during his public remarks and IRMA has yet to see the new EO.
As soon as the actual EO is available, IRMA will analyze and distribute. Please keep in mind that copies that may be circulating now should not be considered final or authoritative. Only the signed EO will be authoritative.
IRMA will not have a formal response until such time as we can analyze the final Executive Order.
WORKERS’ COMPENSATION CASE UPDATE
A few moments ago, the court entered a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) as a result of the lawsuit brought by IRMA and the IMA and supported by approximately two-dozen other groups from every sector of the economy. This means the emergency rule enacted by the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission (IWCC) is NOT in effect until the court decides otherwise. The IWCC has until April 30th to respond to our filings. On behalf of the coalition, IRMA and IMA issued the this statement.
FACE COVERINGS SUPPLIERS
The availability of masks/cloth facial coverings and other personal protection equipment, as well as hand sanitizer and wipes, has been an issue since the earliest days of this pandemic and remains a critical issue today.
Health experts have noted that while masks are required for healthcare and first response personnel, cloth facial coverings are adequate for everyone else. To that end, IRMA was contacted by W. Diamond Corporation, owner of Hart Schnaffer Marx, noting that they have converted their clothes production to cloth facial covering production. Those interested in discussing possibly procuring masks from them may email Ken Ragland, the COO/CFO of W. Diamond Corporation. This is provided as a possible source as some IRMA members have already procured masks from W. Diamond.
This is in addition to any supplier of which you may be aware. IRMA will continue to pass along supplier possibilities as we are made aware.
ILLINOIS COVID-19 IMPACT UPDATE
Dr. Ngozi Ezike, MD, Director of the Illinois Department of Public Healthannounced 1,826 new cases in Illinois, including 123 additional deaths. Currently, IDPH is reporting a total of 36,934 cases, to date, including 1,826deaths, in 96 of Illinois’ 102 counties. Of the 4,877 patients hospitalized as a result of COVID-19, 1,268 are in the intensive care unit. Of those, 766 are on ventilators. Additional information can be found here. COVID-19 stats by zip code can be found here