SPRINGFIELD—Unemployment rates dropped slightly between April and May in Illinois counties and communities, but rates remain high as the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic still lingers.

Boone County had the second highest unemployment rate among Illinois’s 102 counties at 20% in May. The rate had dropped slightly from 23.5% in April, but was dramatically up from 4.6% reported in May of 2019, according to figures released Thursday by the Illinois Department of Employment Security.

Winnebago County had the fourth highest jobless rate at 19.1% in May, down from 22.2% in April, but up from 5.1% in May of 2019.

Nearby Stephenson County had an unemployment rate of 10.3% in May, down from 13% in April, but up from 3.7% in May of 2019.

Ogle County had an unemployment rate of 13% in May, down from 15.2% in April, but up from 4% in May of 2019.

Clay County had the highest unemployment rate in Illinois at 20.1% in May while Brown County had the lowest unemployment rate at 6.8% in May.

Among cities, Rockford had an unemployment rate of 21.2% in May, down slightly from 22.4% in April, but up from 5.1% in May of 2019.

Belvidere had an unemployment rate of 23.8% in May, down from 27.6% in April, but up from 5.6% in May of 2019.

Freeport had an unemployment rate of 12.4% in May, down from 14.9% in April, but up from 4.5% in May of 2019.

The statewide unemployment rate was 15.2% in May, down from 17.2% in April, but up from 4.1% in May of 2019.

The national unemployment rate was 13.3% in May, down from 14.7% in April, but up from 3.6% in May of 2019.

As Illinois moves into the fourth phase of the Restore Illinois plan, state officials hope better economic news in June as businesses move closer to normal business activities.

“Illinois’ transition into Phase 4 of the Reopen Illinois Plan is another positive step toward the recovery of our state and local economies,” said Deputy Governor Dan Hynes. “We will continue to closely monitor the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and make necessary adjustments to ensure the health and safety of our citizens while continuing to provide families and small businesses the resources they need for recovery.”