On Monday, Illinois Governor JB Pritzker commented on an updated emergency order that notes that a Class A misdemeanor "citation" can be filed against businesses that violate the state's re-opening plan.
The comments come on the same day that all of the state's regions remained under the maximum 20 percent positivity rate, on track for another day toward reaching the next health region at the end of the month. That includes the Northeast region with Kendall, Kane, Cook and other counties at 17.9 percent.
There was pushback by several Republican lawmakers over the weekend after the update to the emergency order added that a Class A misdemeanor could be filed against businesses that violate executive orders by re-opening in defiance of the re-opening plan.
Legislators called it an "overreach of power," citing the possibility of jail time and fines and said they would motion during a committee meeting on Wednesday to suspend the measure.
But Pritzker said that the ability for a misdemeanor to be filed was already included in state law and he says that while encouraging compliance is preferred, the punishment would be less severe and less expensive than pulling a business' liquor license or issuing an order to close the business.
Pritzker said the rule can only impact a business and not an individual.
Additionally, the Governor said he was concerned about anti-semitic signs and threats against him and his family, seen during rallies over the weekend, but was "undeterred "from the path the state is on, saying the vast majority of people in the state, "are doing the right thing."
Pilot programs to scale up contact tracing in St. Clair and Lake Counties were also announced on Monday.