All Illinois Regions On Track For Phase 3 Reopening

WBBM Newsradio Staff
May 26, 2020 - 3:09 pm
JB Pritzker

Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker (Facebook)

CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) — All regions of Illinois continue to be on track to move into a slightly more relaxed phase on Friday, Gov. JB Pritzker said Tuesday.

The state’s four regions of his Restore Illinois plan — including Chicago and its suburbs — currently meet healthcare metrics necessary to ease many restrictions Pritzker imposed earlier this year to curb the spread of COVID-19. Pritzker said the statewide "positivity" rate from coronavirus tests is 9.2 %, well below the tripwire level of 20 percent; and COVID-related hospitalizations have reached a six-week low.

"Barring some catastrophe in the next four days," Pritzker said, each region will advance to Phase 3 of five phases on Friday May 29. More types of businesses, including hair salons and retail, can reopen with restrictions, and local officials can choose whether to allow restaurants to serve diners in outdoor settings such as patios. 

Outdoor activities such as golfing and boating also will enjoy eased restrictions, and non-essential gatherings of 10 people or less are allowed, provided everyone maintains social distancing or wear masks.

Churches, synagogues and mosques will continue to be limited to 10 persons at each indoor setting, but Pritzker’s administration has encouraged religious leaders to use outdoor settings if they would like more people to attend services in-person.

Chicago city officials say they won’t be able to allow all aspects of Phase 3 immediately; health authorities are putting together a wider contact tracing program. 

The Illinois Department of Public Health on Tuesday announced 1,178 new cases of novel coronavirus, including 39 deaths. To date, there have been a total of 113,195 confirmed cases in lllinois, including 4,923 deaths.