COVID-19 and Townships
HB 2096 (Public Act 101-0632) Goes Into Effect
The Governor has signed HB 2096 (Public Act 101-0632) effective immediately. After discussing the new changes with our attorney, TOI offers the following best practice interpretation of the new law specific to holding the ANNUAL TOWN MEETING.
If you intend to have the Annual Town Meeting in JULY 2020, you may do so. However, there is a process you are required to follow to do so. Townships are required to seek the written approval of your Local County Health Department, if having the meeting prior to the expiration of the current disaster proclamation. It is required that this be done in writing because of the social distancing requirements and records for the township.
If your intent is to follow the revised statutory requirements, you are required to hold the Annual Town Meeting on the Third Tuesday following the expiration of the disaster proclamation issued by Governor Pritzker. We will publish this date on the TOI website and Facebook page after the date is determined.
If you wanted to have the meeting in July 2020, TOI is recommending the following check list:
1. Place on a township board meeting agenda, the action item to approve holding the Annual Town Meeting on July 21, 2020 (Third Tuesday).
2. Post the regular township board meeting agenda 48 hours in advance of the scheduled regular township board meeting.
3. After approval, by the township board, contact your local health department and obtain the required written approval to hold the meeting on the specific date, location, and time (this must be AFTER 6:00 PM).
4. After approval by your local county health department, post the appropriate meeting notice. You are required to post the notice 15 days prior the scheduled meeting. Remember, publishing is only required in a newspaper IF you have a newspaper published in your township. You must post in 3 of the most public places in your township.
5. Hold the Annual Town Meeting and plan to accommodate the social distancing requirements provided by the Illinois Department of Public Health. This link Restore Illinois Link provides valuable resources to implement Phase 3 of the Governors Restore Illinois from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.
Please contact the TOI office or your township attorney, if you have questions.
Pritzker Administration Announces $25 Million Fast-Track Grants to Accelerate Planned Infrastructure Projects in the Wake of Covid-19
State leverages Rebuild Illinois Dollars to Support Public Infrastructure Projects and Construction Jobs for Summer
Governor JB Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) today announced Fast-Track Public Infrastructure Grants, an initiative to accelerate work on planned public infrastructure projects around the state. The State is expediting $25 million of existing Rebuild Illinois funding to local public infrastructure projects that are ready to begin work this summer, as many local governments face lost revenues, impacting their ability to finance these projects.
While COVID-19 places a unique economic burden on communities across the state, this shift in grant funding will help accelerate construction on planned infrastructure projects, while helping return skilled labor to work.
“I’m proud to announce we are moving forward with $25 million in DCEO grants to help local governments jumpstart public infrastructure projects for the summer construction season,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “This will keep key public infrastructure projects in the pipeline, and support the return of skilled labor to job sites for the busy summer season. Starting today, local governments with shovel ready projects – including school districts, townships, and other entities – can apply for this funding.”
The Fast-Track program leverages funding from Rebuild Illinois, the state’s multi-year capital plan, for allocation to shovel-ready projects just in time for the summer construction season. Fast-Track frontloads a portion of an existing Notice of Funding, to expedite funds available for grants ranging in size between $500,000 and $5 million. Funding will be awarded on a rolling basis, with projects submitted in underserved areas to be given priority.
“We recognize the unique challenge and burdens that COVID-19 is placing on us all, and we are taking steps to provide relief to businesses and communities,” said DCEO Director Erin Guthrie. "Through the Fast Track Public Infrastructure Grants Program, the administration will provide a much-needed boost for workers across the state as well as the critical infrastructure projects our state depends on."
The Fast-Track grants will help restore key public works projects that may have otherwise been cancelled and will help skilled labor return to the job in time for the construction season. Funds can be used to support projects such as expansions of water and sewer systems and reinvestment to modernize schools and other public buildings.
“This program is about putting people back on the job now,” said Illinois AFL-CIO President Tim Drea. “We applaud Gov. Pritzker for being proactive and innovative. The return of every dollar spent on public works is another brick in rebuilding our economy – both in terms of jobs created and economic development created by improved infrastructure.”
Eligible grantees are local governments and other public entities with significant public infrastructure projects that could commence work within 90 days of receiving award notice. Projects eligible for grant funding must be public assets, must be permanent in nature and must not have recurring project expenses. Fast-Track projects must meet shovel-ready criteria, as well as the minority business participation requirements of the State of Illinois' Business Enterprise Program. To apply for the grants, please visit https://bit.ly/2xqjOad.
These Fast Track grants accelerate a portion of an ongoing $50 million Notice of Funding Opportunity for public infrastructure. Communities that need more time or that do not have projects that meet the shovel-ready criteria may submit an application to receive a grant for the remainder of the funds by June 30.
Source funding for the Fast Track grants is generated by Rebuild Illinois– a $45 billion plan passed by Governor Pritzker to provide the state’s first comprehensive capital plan in more than a decade. DCEO has been charged with spearheading a number of Rebuild Illinois programs, including investments to expand broadband capacity, fund new public works projects, incentivize business development, and other initiatives designed to promote economic growth for all communities across the state.
The Fast Track grants program is one of a number of economic assistance initiatives designed by DCEO to mitigate the economic impact of the pandemic—with relief programs making more than $100 million available to Illinois communities in response to COVID-19. These emergency relief initiatives include the Downstate Small Business Stabilization Program, Emergency Hospitality Grants, the Emergency Small Business Loan Fund, and other targeted assistance to serve businesses and communities with the greatest needs.
DCEO will conduct a series of webinars and outreach to local governments to provide information on the new Fast Track grants. For a list of upcoming webinars as well as a list of resources available to small businesses please visit DCEO's website.
TO: TOI MEMBERS
FROM: Bryan E. Smith, Executive Director
DATE: May 1, 2020
RE: COVID-19 Update
I hope this finds you all safe. Remember that your Association is working daily to make sure that you have access to up to date, ACCURATE AND VERIFIED information regarding your responsibilities as an elected Township Official.
Today, May 1, 2020, Governor Pritzker issued Executive Order 2020-33.
Click on this link to view Executive Order 2020-33 Executive Order 2020-33
This new Executive Order provides continued, as well as, new requirements/obligations for all Illinois citizens regarding COVID-19 While this latest “stay at home” order does not specifically address Illinois townships, it still provides us with guidance, as it extends earlier executive orders on social distancing and public meetings/gatherings.
Regarding Township Board Meetings: Townships MAY still have meetings, but social distancing requirements must be followed (i.e., at least 6 feet between each person). A Township may need to reduce the room capacity limit to ensure minimum distance requirements are met, and their meeting notices should tell the public that they reserve the right to do so. HOWEVER, remember that you may NOT prohibit the public from attending a township board meeting. You MUST accommodate their participation in some way.
Should a Township desire to hold meetings electronically, our non-legal best practice interpretation is that Townships must do what they feel is necessary to conduct business and make efforts to pay bills necessary to maintain day to day operations. Please consult with an attorney to see if your meeting plan conforms with not just the Executive Orders, but the Open Meetings Act.
If a Township does not want to open its offices to the public (outside of its meetings), we are recommending that proper signage be placed on the door of the building with contact information for individuals needing Township services.
These are new and challenging times for every level of government. We encourage you to stay positive and work to ensure that your residents receive the same level of services previously provided in your communities. Regarding the Annual Township Meeting: This meeting is still suspended. TOI is working to amend the statute that would provide for a date in the future to hold the meeting. As new information is available, we will update everyone on our website at www.toi.org.
Should you have any questions, please contact our office.
UPDATE AS OF April 9, 2020
As we reported earlier this week, Governor Pritzker SUSPENDED the Annual Town Meeting to an undetermined date at this time by Executive Order 2020-20. We will be updating everyone upon direction from the Governor’s office as to when this meeting may be scheduled. Please note the meeting is suspended not cancelled.
REGARDING REGULAR TOWNSHIP BOARD MEETINGS: Regular township monthly board meetings have not been suspended or cancelled. The objective to have these meeting is up to each individual townships discretion. We are recommending that if you have them you follow the guidelines for social distancing and number of people attending. The Governor has suspended the rules covering electronic participation allowing them to take place. We are encouraging some avenue of holding the meeting electronically so that regular monthly bills can be paid to accommodate business as usual to the extent possible. We are recommending tools like ZOOM or FREE CONFENCE CALL .COM. or another software package of your selection.
If you have additional questions, please contact the TOI office.
From the Executive Director
TO: All Township Officials
FROM: Bryan E Smith, Executive Director
DATE: April 7, 2020
RE: COVID-19; Annual Town Meeting
Governor Pritzker released Executive order 2020-22 this afternoon addressing the ANNUAL TOWN MEETING scheduled for April 14, 2020 or April 21, 2020. The order (copy attached) specifically states the following:
Section1: The provisions of the Township Code, 60 ILCS 1/30-5(a) and 30-5(b), requiring that each township’s annual meeting for calendar year 2020 be held on either April 14, 2020 or April 21, 2020 are SUSPENDED through the duration of the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation.
Therefore, the ANNUAL MEETING IS SUSPENDED. TOI will update everyone on applicable instructions to hold the meeting at a later date.
If you have any questions, please contact the TOI office.
COVID-19 Update for Local Officials (Part 2)
Friday, May 1, 2020 at Noon CST
Presented by: Illinois Association of County Board Members and Heyl Royster
Local officials and agency staff in Illinois need to stay up to date with the legal challenges of COVID-19. Illinois Association of County Board members will partner with Illinois Extension, lending their legal professionals to discuss worker compensation and human resources issues related to COVID-19. Please register to attend this impromptu webinar this Friday, May 1, 2020 at noon. Local officials will have a chance to ask for further legal advice during a Q and A.
University of Illinois Extension provides equal opportunities in programs and employment. For reasonable accommodation, please contact Nancy Ouedraogo at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As of this time, our Federal, State and Local Governments are in the midst of uncertainty due to the Coronavirus (Covid-19 Pandemic)
All public bodies across the State are taking action to curb the spread of Covid-19.
With regards to Township Government the onlyofficial Executive direction from the Office of the Governor (Executive Order 2020-07) encourages public bodies to postpone public business when possible. This Document is a summary of Executive Order 2020-07 as it relates to the Open Meetings Act and the Freedom of Information Act that all townships must abide by.
While this situation is unprecedented it continues to be very fluid and changing by the minute. TOI has been working with legislative leaders and the Governor’s Office to find a solution to the Annual Meeting issue. Any updates regarding the Annual Town Meeting and your ability to cancel or postpone it will be provided on the TOI website and Facebook Page.
Again, this is an unprecedented event and things are changing by the moment. Please stay safe and we will keep you posted as we are made aware of any developments.
During his daily press briefing, Governor JB Pritzker announced that on Wednesday, April 1, he will be extending the disaster proclamation through April 30, 2020
We have a link below to the Governor’s Executive Orders.
Check Illinois Department of Health for COVID-19 Updates
State of Illinois Executive Office Executive Order in Response to COVID-19 regarding electronic participation
Employee/Employer Guidelines for COVID-19
Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation
Executive Order regarding School Closures
Executive Order Regarding Restaurants and Bars, Public Gatherings and Open Meetings Act
Executive Order Regarding Stay at Home
Executive Order Amending Portions of the Stay at Home Order
Executive Order Regarding Remote Notarization
Illinois Modified Stay At Home Order 4/23/2020
Illinois' COVID-19 Website
Prevention in Your Community
Prevention in Adult Day Programs
General Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
State of Illinois Resources
Common Guidelines for all Phase 3 Businesses and Operations
Toolkit for Manufacturing
Toolkit for Health and Fitness Centers
Toolkit for Offices
Toolkit for Personal Care Services
Toolkit for Retail Businesses
Toolkit for Service Counters
Toolkit for Youth Sports
Toolkit for Restaurants & Bars
Guidelines for Outdoor Recreation
Guidelines for Day Camps
Restore Illinois Phase 3 Guidelines 5/28/2020
COVID-19 Resurgence Fact Sheet July 2020
Employees Rights Fact Sheet