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Restaurants Fined, Vaccinations Increase in Lake County as Illinois Set to Expand Phase 1B

Nine Restaurants Fined for Breaking Indoor Ban
Vander Tuuk 2-11-21

(Waukegan, IL) Nine Lake County restaurants will pay fines between 400 and 550-dollars for violating Covid-related indoor dining bans. An attorney for several of the restaurants says the Lake County Health Department had no real standing to fine the establishments for breaking that mandate…so they used nuisance ordinances instead. Four of the affected restaurants are in Fox Lake, two in Antioch, and one each in Libertyville, Gages Lake and Beach Park. Most of the establishments did shut down during the initial Coronavirus lockdown, but refused during the second ban that ran from November through late January.

Coronavirus Lake County Latest
Vander Tuuk 2-11-21

(Waukegan, IL) An increase in testing led to one of the higher Coronavirus case totals of February, but other metrics continue to remain steady, or are in decline. 163 new confirmed or probable cases were reported on Wednesday, but for the 2nd straight day, there were no new fatalities. In Region 9, which includes Lake and McHenry County, test positivity sits at 5.5%, the lowest number since October 4th, and Covid-linked hospitalizations fell for the 21st straight day, sitting at their lowest Regionally since October 25th.

Covid Vaccines Phase 1B Expanded
Vander Tuuk 2-11-21

(Chicago, IL) Even with less supply than hoped for, Governor JB Pritzker says he is going to expand Phase 1B of Coronavirus vaccinations. Educators and those over 65 are the priority of the current phase, but the Governor says later this month, those under 65 with underlying health issues and possible comorbidities will be allowed to make vaccine appointments. The state doled out almost 63-thousand doses of the Covid-19 inoculation in the latest recorded 24 hour period, with now 2.57% of the state’s population receiving both doses. Lake County gave out just under 27-hundred doses, and the number of those fully vaccinated pushed up to 1.77%.

Lake County Board Gives Rent Assistance, Doles Out CARES Act Money
Vander Tuuk 2-11-21

(Waukegan, IL) The Lake County Board is helping out those hit hardest by the Coronavirus pandemic. The Board approved just over 20.5-million-dollars to help with rent, or to pay utilities for those in need. Just over 12-million-dollars in Federal CARES Act money was distributed to help in other areas such as food banks. Lake County has been one of the hardest hit areas during the pandemic, with over 57-thousand confirmed cases and nearly 900 related fatalities.

GOP Mocks House Dems: Meet The New Rules, Same as Old Ones
Associated Press 2-11-21

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) Majority Democrats in Illinois have adopted rules for the new legislative session, the first in four decades without Speaker Michael Madigan at the helm. But Republicans complained Wednesday that while new Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch promised more openness, the rules adopted remained essentially the same as under Madigan’s rule, and include almost none of the GOP’s suggestions. Still hamstrung by the coronavirus pandemic, the House convened in its state Capitol chamber for the first time in nearly a year and voted 70-44 on the rules. They include permission to conduct legislative work remotely by video. They won’t meet again until the 19th, while the Illinois Senate won’t meet until March.

By 2050, Illinois Would Use Only Renewable Energy Under Bill
Associated Press 2-11-21

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) Democrats in the Illinois General Assembly are reviving a plan to make Illinois reliant on only renewable power sources by 2050. The policies and regulations under the legislation would encourage a switch to generating energy from sources such as wind and solar. The Clean Energy Jobs Act has a new boost with the election of Democratic President Joe Biden and other issues like a global pandemic and a corruption scandal involving the state’s largest utility. Governor J.B. Pritzker says he is in favor of the plan.

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