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*** UPDATED x1 *** Champaign city council unanimously approves sweeping emergency ordinance

Friday, Mar 13, 2020

* WCIA TV

The City of Champaign approved an ordinance Friday morning putting the city under a local emergency.

The reason is to prepare for a possible coronavirus spread. Mayor Deb Feinen said she declared the local emergency to set up a process for the City to continue to run if the pandemic gets worse.

The city council unanimously approved the ordinance at their special meeting. The local emergency will be in effect for 28 days. City officials said the regulations used in the ordinance come from City code.

The city manager said there are some regulations in there that will become immediately useful. However, there are some like the suspension of liquor licenses and closing of businesses that won’t be necessary unless the situation gets worse in Champaign. Mayor Feinen said she hopes it won’t get there. “Making sure that we are prepared and ready for any eventuality. I hope all of this is for naught and that none of the emergency measures we’ve put into place are necessary,” said Feinen.

From the Champaign municipal code

After the declaration of an emergency, the Mayor may in the interest of public safety and welfare make any or all of the following orders and provide the following direction:

So what they did was copy and paste language into the new ordinance from an ordinance adopted back in August of 2006, which was an amendment to existing language which probably looked quite similar. It’s all based on this state law

The corporate authorities of each municipality may by ordinance grant to the mayor the extraordinary power and authority to exercise, by executive order, during a state of emergency, such of the powers of the corporate authorities as may be reasonably necessary to respond to the emergency.

There’s more, but you get the idea.

* React…


Outrageous overreach by bureaucrats. Hell No.

Posted by Jeanne Ives on Friday, March 13, 2020

They’re not bureaucrats, they’re elected officials.

* From the link

The City of Champaign, IL. will hold an Emergency Meeting this morning to pass an Ordinance related to the “Emergency Created by the Impact of the COVID-19 Virus” – better known as the “Coronavirus” or the “Wuhan Virus.”

The City proposes to grant extraordinary powers to the Mayor, which include (starting on page 8 of the below pdf):

    Violating parts of the Open Meetings Act
    Ban sale of firearms and ammunition
    Ban sale of any alcohol
    Closing of all bars, taverns, liquor stores, etc
    Ban sale or giving away of gasoline or other liquid flammable or combustible products in any container other than a gasoline tank permanently fixed to a motor vehicle
    Direct the shutoff of power, water, gas, etc
    Take possession of private property and obtain full title to same
    Prohibit or restrict ingress and egress to and from the City

One thing noticeably absent? The Mayor will not have the power to prohibit the sale of marijuana.

Cannabis wasn’t legal in 2006 when the city ordinance was approved, so there was nothing to cut and paste today. Also, Wuhan Virus? C’mon.

* Here’s the meat of the ordinance

After the declaration of an emergency, the Mayor may in the interest of public safety and welfare make any or all of the following orders and provide the following direction:

(1) Issue such other orders as are imminently necessary for the protection of life and property.
(2) Order a general curfew applicable to such geographical areas of the City or to the City as a whole, as the Mayor deems advisable, and applicable during such hours of the day or night as the Mayor deems necessary in the interest of public safety and welfare.
(3) Order the closing of all retail liquor stores, including taverns and private clubs or portions thereof wherein the consumption of intoxicating liquor and beer is permitted;
(4) Order the discontinuance of the sale of alcoholic liquor by any wholesaler or retailer;
(5) Order the discontinuance of selling, distributing, or giving away gasoline or other
liquid flammable or combustible products in any container other than a gasoline tank properly affixed to a motor vehicle;
(6) Order the discontinuance of selling, distributing, dispensing or giving away of explosives or explosive agents, firearms or ammunition of any character whatsoever;
(7) Order the control, restriction and regulation within the City by rationing, issuing quotas, fixing or freezing prices, allocating the use, sale or distribution of food, fuel, clothing and other commodities, materials, goods or services or the necessities of life;
(8) (a) Order City employees or agents, on behalf of the City, to take possession of any real or personal property of any person, or to acquire full title or such lesser interest as may be necessary to deal with a disaster or emergency, and to take possession of and for a limited time, occupy and use any real estate to accomplish alleviation of the disaster, or the effects thereof;
(b) In the event any real or personal property is utilized by the City, the City shall be liable to the owner thereof for the reasonable value of the use or for just compensation as the case may be.
(9) Order restrictions on ingress or egress to parts of the City to limit the occupancy of any premises;
(10) To make provision for the availability and use of temporary emergency housing;
(11) Temporarily suspend, limit, cancel, convene, reschedule, postpone, continue, or
relocate all meetings of the City Council, and any City committee, commission, board, authority, or other City body as deemed appropriate by the Mayor.
(12) Require closing of business establishments.
(13) Prohibit the sale or distribution within the City of any products which could be
employed in a manner which would constitute a danger to public safety.
(14) Temporarily close any and all streets, alleys, sidewalks, bike paths, public parks or public ways.
(15) Temporarily suspend or modify, for not more than sixty (60) days, any regulation or ordinance of the City, including, but not limited to, those regarding health, safety, and zoning. This period may be extended upon approval of the City Council.
(16) Suspend or limit the use of the water resources or other infrastructure.
(17) Control, restrict, allocate, or regulate the use, sale, production, or distribution of
food, water, fuel, clothing, and/or other commodities, materials, goods, services and resources.
(18) Suspend or limit burning of any items or property with the City limits and up to two (2) miles outside the corporate limits.
(19) Direct and compel the evacuation of all or part of the population from any stricken or threatened areas within the City if the mayor deems this action is necessary for the preservation of life, property, or other disaster or emergency mitigation, response or recovery and to prescribe routes, modes of transportation and destination in connection with an evacuation.
(21) Approve application for local, state, or federal assistance.
(22) Establish and control routes of transportation, ingress or egress.
(23) Control ingress and egress from any designated disaster or emergency area or home,
building or structures located therein.
(24) Approve the transfer the direction, personnel, or functions of City departments and agencies for the purpose of performing or facilitating emergency or disaster services.
(25) Accept services, gifts, grants, loans, equipment, supplies, and/or materials whether from private, nonprofit, or governmental sources.
(26) Require the continuation, termination, disconnection, or suspension of natural gas, electrical power, water, sewer, communication or other public utilities or infrastructure. (27) Close or cancel the use of any municipally owned or operated building or other public facility.
(28) Declare, issue, enforce, modify and terminate orders for quarantine and isolation of persons or animals posing a threat to the public, not conflicting with the directions of the Health Officer of the community.
(29) Exercise such powers and functions in light of the exigencies of emergency or disaster including the waiving of compliance with any time consuming procedures and formalities, including notices, as may be prescribed by law.
(30) Issue any and all such other orders or undertake such other functions and activities as the Mayor reasonably believes is required to protect the health, safety, and welfare of persons or property within the City or otherwise preserve the public peace or abate, clean up, or mitigate the effects of any emergency or disaster.

Whew.

*** UPDATE *** The city was stung hard on social media and has responded…


Somebody should’ve read the ordinance more closely before the voted for it.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

27 Comments
  1. - Jibba - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 1:44 pm:

    This certainly seems like an overreach at this point, especially when they have not even closed the schools. However, Jeanne Ives can pound sand.


  2. - DuPage Saint - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 1:51 pm:

    I am surprised that this was not passed in the 60s
    I especially like section 8. Take title to your property
    I am surprised that don’t suspend habeus corpus and set up their own courts


  3. - Ron Burgundy - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 1:54 pm:

    Yeah, but what about the zombies?


  4. - Flapdoodle - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 1:58 pm:

    A bit full of themselves at this stage, aren’t they?

    But there could be a bright side: If they take title to your property, do they have to pay the mortgage?


  5. - NIck - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 1:58 pm:

    The situation in Italy right now is that because the virus is overtaxing their healthcare system so drastrically they’ve basically had to shut down their entire country for a couple of weeks to start arresting the number of new infections.

    Will we see that in Illinois? Hopefully not. But if we do, I want the local government to be capable of acting when that time comes.


  6. - TheInvisibleMan - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 1:58 pm:

    ===I especially like section 8. Take title to your property===

    This is for commercial property. For example, hotels that can be quickly repurposed into quarantine rooms.

    I think the majority of the US is still unprepared for what is yet to come.

    This should be a hint.


  7. - Unstable Genius - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 2:01 pm:

    Yes, I believe that instituting “martial law” is an overreach. Did anyone on the city council ever take a civics class, or read a history book. The entire council should be voted out of office asap, if voting is still allowed in Champaign.


  8. - Southern Illinois Mayor - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 2:01 pm:

    This language was from the civil defense era. People only care about themselves anymore, not about protecting their community. Nothing at all controversial here.


  9. - TheInvisibleMan - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 2:06 pm:

    ===People only care about themselves anymore, not about protecting their community.===

    See: the story here yesterday about the mayor of plainfield


  10. - SWIL_Voter - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 2:07 pm:

    This gives them **authority** to do these things right? The comments seem to be about them actually instituting these measures now, which doesn’t seem to be the case


  11. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 2:07 pm:

    Great reminder the distain Ms. Ives has… except for confederate soldiers.

    Great reminder.


  12. - fs - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 2:14 pm:

    Nothing like calming an already panicked public in your city by telling them you might take their house, gas, booze, and guns. Well timed, council.


  13. - TheInvisibleMan - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 2:19 pm:

    nobody is getting their house taken away.

    Nobody is getting their gas taken away - you just can’t fill up your laundry bin with gas anymore in the back of your pick-up truck anymore.

    Nobody is getting their booze taken away. The city council has complete control over all liquor licenses right now. They could rescind any of them or all of them at any time.

    Nobody is getting their guns taken away - unless you try to form an ad-hoc extra-judicial posse and roam around town.


  14. - NIck - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 2:21 pm:

    ===This gives them **authority** to do these things right? The comments seem to be about them actually instituting these measures now, which doesn’t seem to be the case===

    The comments generally don’t seem to know what they’re talking about in general, unfortunately


  15. - NIU Grad - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 2:21 pm:

    In a mirror universe, Governor Jeannie Ives has deemed COVID-19 a hoax and is commits to personally touching every Statehouse doorknob out of spite.


  16. - phenom_Anon - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 2:31 pm:

    =Nothing like calming an already panicked public in your city by telling them you might take their house, gas, booze, and guns. Well timed, council.=

    If the city administration thought the breadth of the ordinance would be warmly received, then… that doesn’t speak highly of that city’s government. Especially considering the fact that Champaign County thus far has a grand total of 0 confirmed cases.
    If they were wanting to boost business this weekend for gas stations, liquor stores and gun shops, then they did a good job.


  17. - G'Kar - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 2:34 pm:

    Ever since Trump referred to Covvid-19 as the “foreign virus”, the use of “China virus” or “Wuhan virus” has become part of the talking points for the Republican Party and Fox News.


  18. - Just Another Anon - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 2:36 pm:

    The municipal code side of Local Gov’t law isn’t my expertise, but I’m not sure they have the authority to do this, home rule or not.


  19. - Leatherneck - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 2:41 pm:

    Big question now: WWUD? (What Will Urbana Do?).


  20. - JSS - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 2:45 pm:

    I seem to recall that Ms. Ives wanted to be governor, which if she happened to have been successful, would have granted her similar powers under Section 7 of the the IEMA Act, 20 ILCS 3305.

    She wouldn’t have even needed a vote, just declare a disaster and seize what she wanted, chickens, sheets of your bed, cars, your cat, a plane, toilet paper, etc.

    Unfortunately that Act doesn’t seem to permit the seizure of compassion though which is what she actually needs.


  21. - Southern Illinois Mayor - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 3:05 pm:

    Just another anon- of course they do. This is a pretty common ordinance many communities already had adopted. This is a real emergency. People aren’t taking it serious.


  22. - Been There - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 3:05 pm:

    As a colleague made note of they do have a history of some crazy St Pat’s celebrations and this could be useful during the next few days. Especially if classes are all online.


  23. - Anonymous - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 3:24 pm:

    If you own it, LOAD IT.


  24. - revvedup - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 3:58 pm:

    Somebody should remind Champagne the Constitution is still in force. As to - Ron Burgundy - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 1:54 pm: “Yeah, but what about the zombies?”, remember that FEMA and IEMA have prepared for all contingecies…uh, except maybe that one and the odd other one.


  25. - phenom_Anon - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 4:43 pm:

    -revved up
    Apparently you missed this: https://www.fema.gov/blog/2011-05-19/cdc-preparedness-101-zombie-apocalypse


  26. - Don Gerard - Friday, Mar 13, 20 @ 4:43 pm:

    Dont blame me, I voted for Gerard.


  27. - Fly like an eagle - Thursday, Mar 19, 20 @ 12:33 pm:

    “ If they take title to your property, do they have to pay the mortgage?” and “Nothing like calming an already panicked public in your city by telling them you might take their house, gas, booze, and guns. Well timed, council.” and “Yes, I believe that instituting “martial law” is an overreach. Did anyone on the city council ever take a civics class, or read a history book.”

    None of those things are going to happen. No martial law or liquor or guns taken away. Grow up.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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