Northern Illinois community leaders are talking about opening businesses, while still keeping some restrictions in place, by June 1.
Rockford Mayor Tom McNamara announced a plan on Monday that would allow restaurants, places of worship and child care facilities to open by June 1 with modifications to daily operations.
South Beloit Mayor Ted Rehl said he is working with McNamara and other northern Illinois leaders to come up with a consistent and safe plan to reopen restaurants, child care facilities and houses of worship.
“We need a real good balance between the health needs and the business needs on this,” Rehl said. “I’m sure not everyone will be happy.”
The reopening of businesses still will have some restrictions, and that is what the mayors are talking over with each other.
“This city may say, we would allow restaurants to open at 50% capacity, but we may want only 25% capacity,” Rehl said.
He also noted since South Beloit is right at the Illinois/Wisconsin state line, Rehl is looking closely at what Beloit will be doing in a reopening plan.
“We have to live with what Beloit is doing as well,” Rehl said.
The goal of returning to normal to some degree came as the growth of COVID-19 cases seems to be slowing down.
Wisconsin saw fewer than 150 new COVID-19 cases on Monday, with the state reporting a steep drop compared to over the weekend when 500 new cases were reported, according to data provided by the Department of Health Services (DHS).
The Rock County Health Department reported only three new confirmed COVID-19 cases and no new virus-related deaths on Monday, bringing the county’s total up to 432 cases and 14 deaths.
The health department noted that the Beloit community testing events, which will continue through Friday at Krueger and Telfer parks, “will have a significant impact on the number of test results we report in the coming weeks.”
Across the county hospital network, a total of 18 people are hospitalized due to the virus, a decrease of two from May 15.
In the Rock County region, Dane County reported 538 cases and 25 deaths; Green County reported 45 cases and no deaths and Walworth County reported 284 cases and 12 deaths, DHS data from Monday shows.
Across Wisconsin, 144 new cases and six virus-related deaths were reported on Monday, bringing the statewide total up to 12,687 cases and 459 deaths.
Winnebago County added 57 new COVID-19 cases on Monday and no new deaths, the Winnebago County Health Department reports.
In the Winnebago County region, Boone County reported 290 cases and 14 deaths; DeKalb County reported 262 cases and two deaths; McHenry County reported 1,209 cases and 62 deaths; Ogle County reported 172 cases and two deaths; and Stephenson County reported 156 cases and one death, data from the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) on Monday shows.
In Illinois, IDPH reported 2,294 new cases and additional 59 deaths on Monday, bringing the statewide total up to 96,485 cases and 4,234 deaths.