Governor Pritzker discusses next phase of Illinois reopening plan set to begin May 29th


CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WTWO/WAWV) – Beginning next week, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker is expected to soften some of the state’s restrictions.

Illinois is currently in phase two of the state’s reopening plan, it’s a stage that Pritzker calls “flattening”.

Now he says the state is ready for phase three.

The next phase is called “recovery” and is set to begin on May 29th.

Here are some of the changes that can start on that date:

  • Bars and restaurants can open for outdoor seating with guidelines, this is a change from original plans to only offer carryout and delivery.
  • Retail stores can open with capacity limits and other safety guidelines.
  • Non-essential manufacturing jobs can reopen, if they can safely operate with social distancing.
  • Barbershops and salons can open with approved safety guidance.
  • Health and fitness clubs can offer outdoor classes and one-on-one personal training with approved safety guidance.

Thursday, Pritzker discussed the decision to move the state forward.

“We have four regions, they’ve all been moving in the right direction. You see that everybody in Illinois now, all four regions, are not only moving in the right direction but are going to be able to, barring some catastrophic thing that may happen in the next eight days, will move into the next phase,” Pritzker said.

Pritzker says as more of the state begins to open, officials will keep a close eye on COVID-19 data.

“We’re watching week by week, day by day, through the phase to see what’s the effect on the number of people who are coming down with COVID-19, the number of people who end up in the hospital,” Pritzker said.

Although the plans to move forward on the 29th, Pritzker says local community’s can implement stricter guidelines.

“They can do something that’s more stringent and decide not to allow certain activities because maybe they’re a hotspot, maybe they’re concerned about something in particular that they want to deal with on a local level,” Pritzker said.

Phase 3 also allows for gatherings of up to 10 people but that is subject to change based on COVID-19 data at the time.

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