Governor announces regional plan

Downstate may reopen sooner than northern Illinois

Barbershops, hair salons, manufacturing centers and offices may reopen in Sangamon County and other central Illinois counties sooner than other  parts of the state under a regional approach to the pandemic announced today by Gov. JB Pritzker.

The governor today announced a regional approach that divides the state into 11 sectors, with five phases used to measure how much restrictions can be loosened. The current order doesn't allow for schools, bars, restaurants or businesses deemed non-essential to open absent restrictions such as curbside service or delivery only. Phase Five, which eliminates all restrictions, won't be achieved until there is a vaccine or cure.
click to enlarge Gov. JB Pritzker has relaxed restrictions outside northern Illinois.
Gov. JB Pritzker has relaxed restrictions outside northern Illinois.

The loosened restrictions that could kick in by month's end or sooner come amid lawsuits and as officials in some downstate counties have said they will not enforce the governor's stay at home order and social distancing demands.

"I believe in the people of Illinois, now more than ever," Pritzker said at his daily press briefing. "Together, we will finish the work we are in."

Contact Bruce Rushton at

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