US Treasury Publishes New Guidance on the Recoupment and Reallocation of ERA Program Funds

The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, which established and appropriated $25 billion for the first round of the Emergency Rental Assistance program (ERA1), directed the U.S. Department of Treasury (Treasury) to recapture and reallocate “excess” ERA1 funds beginning on September 30, 2021. On October 4, Treasury published new guidance outlining how it plans to recoup and redistribute these funds. Click on the title for more information.

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U.S. Senate Approves $1 Trillion Federal Infrastructure Bill

On Tuesday, August 10, 2021, the U.S. Senate approved an almost $1 trillion investment in infrastructure. The bill was approved 69-30 and will next be considered by the U.S. House of Representatives. The Infrastructure Investments and Jobs Act (IIJA) would provide $973 billion over five years from FY 2022 through FY 2026, including $550 billion in new investments for all modes of transportation, water, power and energy, environmental remediation, public lands, broadband and resilience. The National Association of Counties (NACo) has prepared a summary of the legislation and how it would benefit counties.

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U.S. Census Bureau to Hold August 12 Press Conference on Redistricting

The U.S. Census Bureau will hold a news conference to discuss the release of the first local level results from the 2020 Census. States use these data on race, Hispanic origin, and the voting-age population to redraw the boundaries of their congressional and state legislative districts. The news conference will provide initial analysis of the first local level results from the 2020 Census on population change, race, ethnicity, the age 18 and over population and housing occupancy status. A live Q&A session with Census Bureau subject-matter experts will immediately follow the briefing for credentialed media who have RSVPed.

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Governor Extends Disaster Proclamation into August

On Friday, July 23, 2021, Governor JB Pritzker extended the Disaster Proclamation through August 21. Of note, while the Proclamation did not include the remote meeting authority provision found within previous Proclamations, there may still be authority to hold remote meetings pursuant to P.A. 101-0640. ISACo recommends that counties consult with their state's attorney to clarify what is or is not permitted.

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Governor Releases Update About Energy Legislation Content

Governor Pritzker released the provisions of his most recent energy legislation in a June 10, 2021, memo to the Energy Legislation Working Group. The text of the memo is available by clicking on the title to this story. The General Assembly is set to return to Springfield next Tuesday and Wednesday to debate and vote on energy legislation following the inability to reach agreement prior to the adjournment of the spring legislative session last week. Now that the June 30 deadline has passed, it will require a three-fifths vote of each chamber to approve legislation and send it to the Governor. Key sticking points in the debate over an energy bill concern the amount of the subsidy offered to Exelon for its nuclear fleet and whether or not to exempt coal plants owned by municipal utilities from closure. It has also been reported that a second version of energy legislation has surfaced. Of primary concern to counties is whether an approved energy bill includes provisions restricting local control over siting wind and solar facilities. ISACo opposes such restrictions.

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Governor Pritzker Activates Illinois National Guard to Help Protect Communities

At the request of the City of Chicago, Governor JB Pritzker is activating 125 personnel from the Illinois National Guard to stand by to support the Chicago Police Department with a verdict expected in the trial of Derek Chauvin. Members of the Guard will deploy to Chicago beginning tomorrow, April 20, to pre-position and support the Chicago Police Department as needed. The Illinois National Guard will carry out a limited mission to help manage street closures and will not interfere with peaceful protestors exercising their First Amendment rights, much the same role as Guard members played in previous deployments.

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State of Illinois Launches Two Additional State-Supported Mass Vaccination Sites in Rockford and Collinsville

On February 22, Governor JB Pritzker announced the launch of two additional state-supported mass vaccination sites in Rockford and Collinsville. The sites will launch on Tuesday, February 23 and each will ramp up to provide up to 1,350 doses per day at full capacity. Governor JB Pritzker is also activating additional members of the Illinois National Guard to support Winnebago and Madison counties in standing up additional mobile vaccination sites to reach rural and underserved communities.

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Governor Pritzker Announces Expanded Assistance for Illinois Child Care Providers

On Wednesday, December 23, 2020, Governor JB Pritzker announced the administration is directing additional funding to support child care providers that are part of the Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP) which helps low-income working families access high-quality childcare, impacting 100,000 children annually. The administration will utilize funding allocated to Illinois through the federal CARES Act to cover all eligible days of CCAP payments for December, January, and February regardless of attendance.

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COVID Resources for Counties

Counties are on the front lines protecting our communities from the coronavirus and other illnesses that have the potential to become a pandemic. Counties support over 900 hospitals and operate over 1,900 public health departments, which are the ground troops in the fight against the coronavirus outbreak. During this crisis, the National Association of Counties (NACo) is focused on disseminating useful information to our members, and facilitating the exchange of effective strategies and approaches.

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ISACo News and Views

The ISACo weekly News and Views e-newsletter for December 7, 2020, reports on the latest guidance by the U.S. Treasury Department on Coronavirus relief fund reporting requirements, provides information about a new COVID-19 stimulus package announced by Congress, offers an update on COVID-19 vaccine distribution within Illinois, shares information about a new report released by the Worker Protection Task Force, references an upcoming NACo webinar opportunity, spotlights ISACo corporate partner Nationwide and invites counties to join ISACo.

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