Capitol - Your Illinois News Radar » House, Senate will meet Wednesday, but cancel next Tuesday and Thursday session dates, following week “likely to be canceled”
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House, Senate will meet Wednesday, but cancel next Tuesday and Thursday session dates, following week “likely to be canceled”

Thursday, Dec 30, 2021 - Posted by Rich Miller

[Comments are now open.]

* From House Speaker Chris Welch’s chief of staff Tiffany Moy…


I hope everyone is having a nice holiday break and that you and your families are healthy and well. This email contains several important announcements relating to session activity over the next few weeks:

1) The House and Senate will convene on Wednesday, Jan. 5. Session will be canceled on Tuesday, Jan. 4 and Thursday, Jan 6. We will continue to monitor the public health emergency and will make a final decision on the week of January 11-13 in the very near future. The attached joint release will be sent to the media shortly.

2) Please hold Tuesday, Jan. 4 at noon for a virtual caucus. Additional information will follow.

3) SHIELD Illinois testing will be available in the Stratton Building on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays beginning next week. The available dates/times and the registration information for those who have not previously registered for testing is below: [Redacted]

House Members will not be required to test, but I very strongly encourage everyone to take advantage of the SHIELD testing upon arrival to/departure from Springfield during session weeks. If testing upon arrival is not feasible, I strongly encourage obtaining a PCR or rapid test before coming to Springfield.

Additional information on testing and protocols are in the attached memo, and will also be reviewed in Tuesday’s caucus.

4) There is no intention to extend any of the existing deadlines. As a reminder, the deadline to submit legislation for drafting is Friday, January 14. The deadline to file legislation is Friday, January 28. Your Issues/Legislative staffer will be following up to ensure your drafting requests are submitted and processed before the deadline.

Thank you all for your patience as we work through this, and please let me know if you have any questions or concerns.

…Adding… And if that testing schedule doesn’t make sense because they’re meeting Wednesday, this is from another internal memo

For the week of January 3rd ONLY, evening testing on Monday will be canceled and instead take place on Tuesday, January 4th from 4:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.

* Press release…

The Illinois General Assembly will be in session Wednesday, Jan. 5, but the Tuesday (Jan. 4) and Thursday (Jan. 6) session days are being canceled, legislative leaders announced.

House Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch and Senate President Don Harmon also said the following session week (Jan. 11-13) is likely to be canceled amid the ongoing global pandemic.

“In the past 2 weeks, Illinois’ daily average of COVID-19 cases increased 130% and hospitalizations have risen 50%. This pandemic is not over,” said House Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch. “We must take necessary precautions to mitigate the spread of the virus, reduce the burden on our health care systems and keep each other as safe as possible. We know how important the people’s work is and we are committed to getting that work done in a safe way. Please take advantage of the free and widely available vaccines and boosters because we know it is our best tool in this fight.”

“We continue to monitor the situation in an effort to protect our colleagues, our staffs and everyone else who is part of a legislative session day,” said Illinois Senate President Don Harmon. “We have work to do, and we’ve proven that we can do it, minimize exposure and keep people healthy and safe. I encourage everyone to take advantage of the vaccines and booster shots available to protect themselves and those around them.”

* Meanwhile…

Due to an increase in COVID-19 cases statewide, Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White is announcing that all Secretary of State departments will not conduct in-person transactions – including Driver Services facilities – from Jan. 3, 2022, through Jan. 17, 2022. All departments and Driver Services facilities will reopen on Tuesday, Jan. 18. White is encouraging the public to visit for online services. Online transactions will remain open for all departments to conduct office services, including, but not limited to the following:

    • Renewing a license plate sticker.
    • Renewing a driver’s license or ID card for those who qualify (individuals may call 217-785-1424 to confirm their eligibility or to obtain their PIN).
    • Obtaining a duplicate driver’s license or ID card.
    • Obtaining a driver record abstract.
    • Filing Business Services documents, such as incorporations and annual reports.

In addition, the Drivers and Vehicles Services hotline phone number will remain open at 800-252-8980. Customers with issues involving administrative hearings may email or call 312-793-3722 or 217-782-7065.

…Adding… It’s pretty widespread, but mostly mild for those who are vaccinated and boosted…


  1. - Stormsw7706 - Monday, Jan 3, 22 @ 7:50 am:

    Am I missing something here? The Senate and House are rearranging their schedules to avoid pandemic risk while encouraging and/or coercing school districts to return to in person learning. Having worked in education over 30 years I can tell you we have about 10percent of the COVID safeguards available to them and they still feel they can’t safely work at the Capitol. In light of Omicron it seems logical for schools not to return until after the King holiday. Let the virus begin a downward trajectory before exposing our kids and teachers. Schools are barely staying open now due to staff illnesses and educators leaving the profession.

  2. - JS Mill - Monday, Jan 3, 22 @ 8:05 am:

    =Having worked in education over 30 years I can tell you we have about 10percent of the COVID safeguards=

    This is not true for most districts. ESSER funds have provided ample resources for appropriate mitigations for all schools. Maybe yours is not using the funds the way they should but that is not true for all.

    =Schools are barely staying open now due to staff illnesses and educators leaving the profession.=

    Because kids and teachers are ignoring safety measures outside of schools. Here in rural Illinois I see many not making in public and it is a constant battle to get them to mask at indoor events.

    I am not sending kids home to remote because adults cannot do the right thing.

  3. - Rich Miller - Monday, Jan 3, 22 @ 8:05 am:

    ===while encouraging and/or coercing===

    How is the GA doing that?

  4. - NonAFSCMEStateEmployeeFromChatham - Monday, Jan 3, 22 @ 10:38 am:

    However, SOS employees will still be going to work in the buildings (or some doing half-and-half WFH and in office on alternating days) during the next two weeks. At least in the complex.

  5. - Stormsw7706 - Monday, Jan 3, 22 @ 12:37 pm:

    Apologies. Coercing is a little strong. I think overall the response to COVID in Illinois has been pretty good. I fear that the hard choices mad in the past that has kept us safer are being overlooked by a desire to keep kids in school ( and allowing parents to work ). I hope Omicron is a rapid brush fire that runs out of fuel in the next 3 weeks. I would hope we can recognize the likelihood of this and delay the return to school till after the King holiday. The funds referenced by JS were finally put to use in my district recently in the form of an air purifier for each classroom.

  6. - cermak_rd - Monday, Jan 3, 22 @ 4:11 pm:

    What I don’t understand with schools is why we can’t have hybrid non-remote. That is, if a parent wants their child at home, the teacher(s) can supply a copy of their lessons plans once a week and the student can take any needed tests masked, spaced and proctored in a well ventilated room. And when the parent decided it is safe they can put the student back in regular school without any concern about truancy etc. This way the parents who need their students at the school get that, the parents that don’t want their children in the school get that, and the teacher does not have to manage the annoyance of hybrid remote. I cannot imagine a teacher teaching anything without a lesson plan so it shouldn’t be a big extra responsibility for that to be provided once a week to the interested parents.

    Certainly there should be no perfect attendance rewards being offered right now anyway.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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