Quick hits: Illinois news in brief for Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Lawmaker wins first round in legal battle over governor’s stay-at-home order

Gov. J.B. Pritzker said the Illinois Attorney General will defend the governor’s orders and called state Rep. Darren Bailey irresponsible for filing a lawsuit against the order that found favor in Clay County Circuit Court.

Bailey said it’s the governor who created the economic problems by shutting down the economy.

The representative said that will far outweigh the impact of COVID-19. He said the governor has not been transparent and is grandstanding while sidestepping local public health officials’ authority.

More legal challenges to governor’s stay-at-home order expected

Another state lawmaker suing the governor over his stay home orders says the governor is acting like a dictator.

State Rep. John Cabello says he’s signed paperwork to file the suit in Winnebago County he said is nearly identical to state Rep. Darren Bailey’s lawsuit.

Bailey’s suit led to a temporary restraining order against the governor’s order, but it only gives Bailey relief from the orders.

Hospital capacity continues to fluctuate in Illinois

Overall hospital capacity continues to fluctuate.

About 73 percent of available intensive care unit beds are occupied. That’s flat from the day before. Of the total number of ventilators, around 30 percent are occupied. That’s a sharp decline from 43 percent reported the day before.

Of 32,000 hospital beds, 4,672 are COVID-19 patients. That’s 77 more than the week before.

Legislative leaders weigh in on legal challenge

Illinois legislative leaders are critical of a ruling Monday in favor of a state representative who challenged Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s stay-at-home order.

House Speaker Michale Madigan said state Rep. Darren Bailey’s lawsuit is “extremely reckless.”

Senate President Don Harmon said the ruling doesn’t change the need for people to practice social distancing.

Brady wants lawmakers to return to Springfield

Get back to Springfield. That’s what Senate Minority Leader Bill Brady is calling on legislative leaders or the governor to do.

Brady said lawmakers have to take up important issues like dealing with COVID-19, fair maps. There’s also the budget that starts July 1 that hasn’t been addressed.

A spokesperson for Senate President Don Harmon said bringing everyone to the capital isn’t conducive to social distancing and “comes with potentially dire consequences that right now can and should be avoided.”

Illinois Treasurer makes more money available for small businesses

Illinois Treasurer Michael Frerichs has announced he’s increasing available money to help small businesses during the economic shutdown imposed by the state government to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Frerichs said he’s increasing the amount to $500 million for small businesses to get low-interest bridge loans.

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