Illinois' Clark County Votes to Reopen and Return to Work

A special meeting, open to the public, was held Friday afternoon in Marshall, Illinois. The Clark County board voted 6 to 1 in favor of reopening the county and allowing citizens to return to work. This is under recommended guidelines by Clark County but against the Governor's orders.

Posted: May 9, 2020 6:45 AM

MARSHALL, Ill. (WTHI) - A special meeting, open to the public, was held Friday afternoon in Marshall, Illinois. The Clark County board voted 6 to 1 in favor of reopening the county and allowing citizens to return to work. This is under recommended guidelines by Clark County but against the Governor's orders.

News 10 spoke with Clark County board member Jim Bolin and citizens of Clark County to gauge their reaction.

"We're not telling people to open up and we're not saying this that or the other," Bolin explained, "We're just giving the citizens of our county the support to open up if they want to and if they feel safe to."

Bolin says this resolution is for unincorporated areas of Clark County. This is not required, it is simply a plan given by the county to give businesses the option to open if they choose. 

Recommendations for retail businesses, restaurants, and other places include wearing masks, taking temperatures daily, maintaining social distance, and allowing only 50% capacity.

Bolin and other members of the public expressed why they feel this is the right course of action for their county.

Hundreds gathered outside the Clark County courthouse in support of reopening the county. Members of the public, like Stephanie Scott, gave their reasons for support. She's a teacher for Casey-Westfield Schools. She says the public making decisions, and not just one person, is part of our constitution. 

"We've got to contact our representatives, contact our board, and contact those people who help check and balance who we have in power in Illinois," Scott explained, "In Clark County, we have zero deaths at this point in time. It's killing our businesses. I think it's a good idea to responsibly reopen."

Bolin says they aren't trying to "beat up" Governor Pritzker and his decisions. This course of action simply makes sense for their county's lower and more spread out population.

"I personally don't feel like it's us against them or anything like that," Bolin said, "For our county and the number of people we have in it--we're suffering and we need to get our people back to work and do it safely."

Bolin says the guidelines set forth will allow those in Clark County to reopen only if they choose to, do it safely, and with a quicker time frame. While it may go against Governor Pritzker's recommendation, he says this is the right move for Clark County and the people that he and the board represent.

"All I know is what our people and our county is telling us what they would like to do and that's who we represent," Bolin concluded, "We have the common sense to keep ourselves sheltered if we have underlying health problems but we just need to open up."

Each city within Clark County has the choice to support the county's resolution or stick with the State of Illinois' guidelines. For instance, there will be a support vote at Marshall's City Council meeting this upcoming Monday. We'll bring you their decision and any further updates as soon as we learn more. 

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Illinois Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 7 p.m. CT)

Cases: 1361569

Reported Deaths: 24671
CountyCasesDeaths
Cook54504110100
DuPage905031279
Will75456990
Lake67145988
Kane58349771
Winnebago33178474
Madison30500519
McHenry28573285
St. Clair27847513
Peoria23094310
Champaign20618145
Sangamon18724234
McLean18138179
Tazewell16938287
Rock Island14970314
Kankakee14176210
Kendall1303893
LaSalle12536243
Macon10750199
DeKalb9856119
Vermilion9628132
Adams8452123
Williamson7428129
Whiteside7160171
Boone669972
Ogle611181
Grundy588775
Clinton575790
Coles568695
Knox5553145
Jackson502464
Henry497066
Livingston481785
Stephenson475381
Woodford473976
Effingham472972
Macoupin469782
Marion4472115
Franklin444874
Monroe435793
Jefferson4291120
Lee416552
Randolph412984
Fulton391955
Morgan388981
Logan386958
Montgomery371974
Bureau371682
Christian365973
Fayette317455
Perry316960
Iroquois301866
McDonough284847
Jersey268949
Douglas258835
Saline256454
Lawrence240525
Shelby229537
Union226040
Crawford211626
Bond204824
Cass199125
Jo Daviess181024
Clark179933
Warren179746
Pike178852
Ford178246
Wayne177553
Hancock175931
Carroll175136
Richland175140
Edgar170239
White169626
Washington164525
Moultrie161028
De Witt150824
Mason150745
Piatt149714
Clay148143
Mercer146933
Johnson143915
Greene143633
Wabash134612
Massac133940
Cumberland129019
Menard123412
Jasper115018
Marshall106918
Hamilton83315
Schuyler7536
Brown7046
Pulaski6887
Stark63723
Edwards56912
Henderson52514
Calhoun5182
Putnam4823
Scott4781
Alexander46811
Gallatin4584
Hardin38612
Pope3204
Out of IL20
Unassigned02351

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 8 p.m. ET)

Cases: 732692

Reported Deaths: 13450
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1002531746
Lake53931975
Allen40779678
St. Joseph35838552
Hamilton35695408
Elkhart28695442
Tippecanoe22419219
Vanderburgh22332397
Porter18838309
Johnson18007379
Hendricks17269315
Clark13007191
Madison12708339
Vigo12470248
LaPorte11970212
Monroe11914170
Delaware10720186
Howard9946216
Kosciusko9438117
Hancock8310141
Bartholomew8078156
Warrick7789155
Floyd7672178
Grant7072174
Wayne7061199
Boone6712101
Morgan6593139
Dubois6162117
Marshall6073111
Cass5826105
Dearborn581878
Henry5758103
Noble562784
Jackson502773
Shelby493196
Lawrence4563120
Harrison436372
Gibson436092
DeKalb429285
Clinton427953
Montgomery425089
Whitley397139
Huntington392980
Steuben389457
Miami382267
Knox372690
Jasper368248
Putnam361660
Wabash354580
Adams341954
Ripley340170
Jefferson331281
White314854
Daviess298199
Wells291881
Decatur285492
Fayette281262
Greene279785
Posey271933
LaGrange267870
Scott266954
Clay260547
Washington241632
Randolph241181
Spencer232431
Jennings230449
Starke217154
Fountain213046
Sullivan212042
Owen201956
Jay196330
Fulton195540
Carroll189420
Orange184154
Perry183537
Rush173725
Vermillion169643
Franklin168435
Tipton163045
Parke146416
Blackford135132
Pike134934
Pulaski116945
Newton108134
Brown102441
Crawford100615
Benton98914
Martin89015
Warren82215
Switzerland7938
Union71010
Ohio57111
Unassigned0417