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News Around lllinois – May 13, 2020

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COVID-19 Cases Top 4K In 1 Day, Pritzker Notes More Testing

SPRINGFIELD — Illinois has recorded 4,014 new coronavirus cases, which is a one-day record high. The state also reported 144 new deaths Tuesday. But Gov. J.B. Pritzker said the state also received results on 29,000 coronavirus tests in the past 24 hours, so the new numbers should come as no surprise. The Democratic governor also called on the General Assembly to convene and craft a budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1. The coronavirus has kept lawmakers from the Capitol since early March and a decimated Illinois economy has put the state budget at least $7 billion in the hole. – Associated Press

Freelancers May Begin Filing For Unemployment This Week

CHICAGO – Illinois began accepting unemployment applications for gig workers and independent contractors this week. Governor J.B. Pritzker says 50,000 people have filed for unemployment under the new Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program in just the last day. The governor says that is something the state’s original unemployment computer system could not have done. “It was built on a ten year old platform, not expecting to take the kind of size of applications that have come in for regular unemployment, but this PUA system which was built with outside assistance is doing well,” said Pritzker. Those who are interested must apply at the Illinois Department of Employment Security website. Those workers must then certify they are actively looking for work every two weeks. Benefits are taxable and can be doled out for up to nine months. – Sam Dunklau, NPR Illinois

Bradley University To Resume On-Campus Instruction In August

PEORIA — Bradley University in central Illinois has announced it will resume on-campus instruction in late August. University officials said Monday that Bradley’s location in Peoria and its size gives administrators confidence regular operations can resume in a safe environment. Incoming Bradley president Stephen Standifird said in a statement Monday the university is taking “every possible health precaution” and preparing for all scenarios. University officials say preliminary plans for an on-campus return are being devised, including modifications to classrooms, residential living and common-area access. They also say some class elements may be conducted online and others in small in-person settings. – Associated Press

Student Guilty of Disorderly Conduct For Elevator Noose

URBANA — A University of Illinois student has pleaded guilty to misdemeanor disorderly conduct for making a noose out of string and leaving it last September in a residence hall elevator. Andrew Smith pleaded guilty to the charge Tuesday before Champaign County Circuit Judge Heidi Ladd, who sentenced him to a year of court supervision. The 20-year-old Smith of Normal, Illinois, was originally charged with a hate crime, a felony. His sentence of supervision, along with 50 hours of public service and a $75 fine, spares Smith a criminal record should he successfully complete the sentence without further criminal activity. – Associated Press

COVID-19 is a rapidly evolving story, and we are working hard to bring you the most up-to-date information. We recommend checking the Coronavirus Information Center for the most recent numbers and guidance.

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