Latest Update Regarding Face Coverings and Gatherings

ANNOUNCEMENT OF NEW ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH EMERGENCY RULING

In recent days, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) has announced emergency rules for businesses, schools, and child care establishments regarding the use of face coverings and the size of gatherings. Details of the emergency rule Control of Communicable Diseases Code (77 Ill. Adm. Code 690), may be viewed here. Governor Pritzker’s Press Release may be viewed here.

In summary, this ruling states that any business, service, facility, or organization shall take reasonable steps:

  • to require employees, customers, and other individuals on the premises to wear a face covering
  • to comply with group gathering size recommendations

 The Facial Covering and Gathering Size Requirements and Restrictions, at this time, are as follows:

• Any individual over age two and able to medically tolerate a face covering is required to cover their nose and mouth with a face covering when in a public place and unable to maintain at least a six-foot social distance.

• Any business, service, facility, or organization shall take reasonable steps to require employees, customers, and other individuals on the premises to wear a face covering.

• Public and nonpublic schools, ranging from preschools through post-secondary institutions, and day care centers and homes shall require students, employees, and other individuals on the premises to wear a face covering.

• Gatherings of more than 50 people or more than 50% of a building’s maximum capacity are prohibited unless exempted by law or Executive Order. Per the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO), businesses that comply with the guidance issued by DCEO are complying with the Executive Order and thus are complying with this rule.

Please note that Individuals are not subject to any penalty — but are nevertheless required to wear masks in public.

If a business, service, facility, or organization open to the public is found to be in non-compliance by an enforcing entity, steps will be taken as follows:

  • First, the establishment will be given a written notice of non-compliance by an enforcing entity encouraging the establishment to voluntarily make “reasonable efforts” to comply with public health guidance.
  • Second, the establishment may be ordered to have some or all the people on the premises disperse if it does not voluntarily comply in a reasonable time after receiving a verbal or written notice. 
  • Third, any establishment that refuses to comply with a written order to disperse will be subject to the penalties set forth in Section 8.1 of the Department of Public Health Act, which could include a Class A Misdemeanor. For an establishment, the only possible penalty is a fine of between $75 and $2,500 for refusal to voluntarily comply after an opportunity to come into compliance.

These rules provide flexibility for local communities and a measured process to help keep people safe. The emergency rules outline the authority of IDPH and local health departments to investigate COVID-19 cases and reaffirm that businesses have a responsibility to cooperate with those investigations.

If the Village of Huntley receives a complaint regarding any business, service, facility, or organization, the initial contact will be made by the Village to discuss the complaint and to verify that appropriate steps will be taken to rectify the situation. The information will then be provided to the appropriate County Health Department for any necessary follow-up.

Please continue to take appropriate measures to inform individuals of the face covering rules as they enter your facility. Signage suggestions vary per industry, and may be viewed on the DCEO website via the following links: Phase 4 Guidelines and Guidance and FAQ's and subsequent revisions.

Businesses must also post the guidance from the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) and Office of the Illinois Attorney General regarding workplace safety during the COVID19 emergency.

Additional resources are available via the following sites:

County Health Departments:
To discuss businesses north of Kreutzer Road contact:  
      McHenry County Health Department     www.mchenrycountyil.gov          Phone: 815.334.4510

To discuss businesses south of Kreutzer Road contact:
     Kane County Health Department    www.kanehealth.com          Phone: 630-208-3801

Illinois Department of Public Health   www.dph.illinois.gov/covid19

Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity     www2.illinois.gov/dceo

State of Illinois Coronavirus site    coronavirus.illinois.gov/s/