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Local

Illinois Sen. Sue Rezin wants public hearing on Gov. JB Pritzker’s mitigation rules

State senator says governor changed his own rules

State Sen. Sue Rezin, R-Morris, is calling on the Illinois Senate to hold a public hearing about the Pritzker Administration’s latest COVID-19 mitigation rules, which are being implemented in several regions across the state.

“Restaurants across the state are being forced to shut down despite the lack of data showing they are the culprit for the recent increase in COVID-19 cases,” Rezin said in a news release. “The governor has been asked many times to provide the ‘data and science’ he claims is behind his resurgence mitigation rules, yet we have yet to see it."

Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker issued a decision to ban indoor dining and drinking and to limit the size of gatherings in several of the state's health regions to mitigate the spike of COVID-19 cases.

Rezin questioned why data behind Pritzker's mitigation measures aren't readily available.

"These are questions Illinoisans deserve answers to,” she said.

Pritzker said Wednesday his administration is collecting and will make public the data to justify his COVID-19 restrictions on indoor dining after Senate Republicans urged him to release the numbers, according to an Associated Press report.

Rezin believes Pritzker has "changed his own rules," according to a news release from her office, and is disregarding his original mitigation strategy, which would have allowed restaurants to remain open under reduced capacity.

“When Illinois entered into Phase 4 of reopening, the governor announced his resurgence mitigation plan, which included a tiered system of mitigations,” Rezin said. “Under that plan, if a region had three consecutive days of 8% positivity rate, they would be placed into Tier 1, which simply reduced indoor dining capacity. When and why did this plan change to completely shutting down indoor dining service?

“If we don’t allow people to dine at restaurants, where there are regulations, they will simply gather privately in their homes with larger groups, where there are no regulations. People will gather, so why not provide them with options to do it responsibly?”

The Illinois Department of Public Health reported another 6,943 new infections Friday, a new single-day record, with 36 additional deaths.

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