Illinois Enhances Vaccination and Testing Capacity
CHICAGO – Governor JB Pritzker has directed the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) and Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) to enhance its partnerships with local health department mass vaccination operations throughout the state to help meet the growing demand for the COVID-19 vaccine booster. The State of Illinois is more than doubling personnel and adding at least 100 people to regional sites – administering vaccinations, preparing vaccine doses for clinic personnel, and doing data entry.
Additionally, starting the week of January 3, the state’s free Community Based Testing Sites will begin operating six days a week to increase COVID-19 testing availability across the state.
In recent weeks, the State of Illinois partnered with Cook County Health to offer two (2) one day booster clinics, resulting in about 7,000 shots administered.
Appointments can be made at the link below. Many locations will also accept walk ups.
December 23 Update from the Cook County Department of Public Health
The Cook County Department of Public Health has announced that effective January 3, 2022, proof of vaccination will be required for entry into all indoor public spaces. This regulation applies to indoor public spaces such as restaurants, health and fitness clubs, personal service and performance venues, offices and public transportation. Masks are also required within all indoor public spaces in Cook County.
Businesses must require individuals eligible for vaccination to show proof that they are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 with an approved vaccine in order to gain entry to the establishment. Signage advising of the vaccination and mask requirements must be posted at all entrances. Employees must be vaccinated or show weekly proof of a negative COVID test. Please read the entire press release issued by the Cook County Department of Public Health for complete details.
Confirmed COVID-19 cases have gone up in Riverside by 284% since December 9 and cases are up throughout the state and country. Please take care to observe public health guidance issued by Cook County.
December 14 Update - COVID Guidance for Winter Holidays
- The COVID-19 vaccines are by far the best way to protect yourself and your loved ones from the virus, and anyone who isn’t vaccinated should get one as soon as possible to be protected for the holidays. That includes children now that 5-11 year olds are now eligible for the Pfizer vaccine.
- Fully vaccinated people can gather with others who have been fully vaccinated without restrictions.
- The indoor mask mandate for public settings remains in effect for Chicago and Illinois. While this applies in public settings, if you are gathering with people outside your immediate circle or with people who are medically fragile, you should consider wearing a mask.
- If you are not fully vaccinated, you should consider not attending gatherings over the holidays. If you plan to do so, we encourage you to take a COVID test before the gathering, as well as mask and social distance when possible. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/holidays/celebrations.html
- If you are sick or experiencing any COVID- or flu-like symptoms you should NOT attend any gatherings, even if you are vaccinated.
- Fully vaccinated people can travel for the holidays.
- Individuals who are not vaccinated should consider delaying travel until fully vaccinated. If traveling is a necessity, unvaccinated people should follow the CDPH Travel Advisory guidelines.
- These guidelines are in place to ensure safety among families during the Holidays. Do your part and encourage others to protect themselves and their loved ones by getting vaccinated. To learn more about the COVID-19 vaccine and booster doses, visit chi.gov/covidvax .
November 22, 2021 Update from the Cook County Department of Public Health
November 1, 2021 Update from the Illinois Department of Public Health -
Holiday Season Guidance
The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is issuing updated guidance to help people celebrate more safely as we continue to battle the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Last year, many people held off getting together with family and friends during the holiday season due to the pandemic,” said IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike. “This year, we have a safe and effective vaccine to help protect against severe illness due to COVID-19 that will allow friends and families to more safely celebrate together. Getting vaccinated is the best way to protect yourself, your friends and family, and your community, but there are other actions you can take to celebrate more safely.”
Travel safety considerations:
- Delay travel until you are fully vaccinated, or wait until you get a booster shot if eligible
- If you’re not fully vaccinated, test 1-3 days before and 3-5 days after traveling
- Travel during off-peak times to avoid crowds
- Drive a private vehicle to reduce exposure to COVID-19
- If using public transportation, try to travel during non-peak times. Masks are required on/in all areas of mass transit
Guests and gatherings:
- Keep indoor gatherings small
- Arrange seating and other areas to allow for physical distance
- Increase air flow by opening windows and/or doors
- Avoid having people congregate, such as in the kitchen or at the buffet
- Clean and sanitize the kitchen, bathrooms, and other areas used by guests
People who are sick with fever, cough, or other symptoms of COVID-19, or have been exposed to someone with COVID-19, should not travel or gather for holiday events during that time.
More information on COVID-19 Holiday Season Safety can be found on the IDPH website at https://dph.illinois.gov/covid19/community-guidance/holiday-season-safety.html.
October 20, 2021 Update from the Illinois Department of Public Health
IDPH Issues Updated COVID-19 Halloween and Fall Festivities Guidance
The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) has issued updated guidance to help people celebrate Halloween and manage Fall festivities more safely as we continue to battle COVID-19.
Thanks to the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines that are readily available, activities will look a little different than last year, but there is still no vaccine for children under the age of 12, so precautions must still be taken to prevent the spread of the virus. The Illinois Department of Public Health recommends a layered approach.
- Get vaccinated and get a booster shot when appropriate
- Wear a mask indoors
- Limit/avoid settings where physical distancing is not possible
Masks are currently required in all indoor public locations in Illinois. A costume mask is NOT a substitute for a well-fitting mask to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Wearing a costume mask over a face covering to prevent the spread of COVID-19 is not recommended because it could make breathing more difficult. Safer options include choosing a costume that does not come with a costume mask, or find a costume that incorporates a face covering.
Trick-or-treating outdoors in small groups is best, but if outdoors is not an option, there are steps people can take to make indoor trick-or-treating safer. Those handing out tricks or treats indoors should open doors and windows as much as possible to promote increased ventilation and wear a mask. It is also important for everyone handing out or receiving treats to wash their hands.
Alternatives to door-to-door trick-or-treating can include setting up tables in a parking lot or other safe outdoor area where individually wrapped treats can be set out or holding an outdoor costume parade for kids along with a parent/guardian.
Haunted Houses, Woods, Walks
Open-air haunted houses are safer than an enclosed haunted house. Masks are required to be worn in indoor haunted houses and the number of people should be limited to reduce crowding. Other options include visiting outdoor haunted woods or going on a haunted walk.
Pumpkin Patches, Orchard Visits, Fall Festivals
Try to visit pumpkin patches, orchards, and festivals at times that aren’t as busy. You can also limit your exposure by moving away from crowded areas and wearing a mask.
Halloween Parties and Social Gatherings
Large gatherings with more people increase the risk of COVID-19 transmission compared to small gatherings, and outdoor parties are safer than indoor parties. If indoors, a mask must be worn in public places, but can also be worn in private settings where physical distancing is difficult. For indoor gatherings, try to increase air flow by opening doors and windows.
Dia de los Muertos
Holding events and activities outdoors to honor deceased loved ones for Día de los Muertos is safer than indoors. If gathering indoors, increase air flow by opening windows and try to physically distance as much as possible. Another option to celebrate and remember deceased loved ones is to exchange traditional family recipes with family or neighbors that they can make at home.
If you have symptoms of COVID-19 or have been exposed to someone who has COVID-19, do not participate in any Halloween or Fall events.
More information on Halloween and Fall Guidance is on the IDPH website at https://dph.illinois.gov/covid19/community-guidance/Halloween.
October 8, 2021 Update form the Illinois Department of Public Health
As we enter cold and flu season, this comparison of symptoms for COVID-19 vs the Common Cold vs the Flu may prove helpful. Residents are encouraged to get vaccinated, mask up and wash hands frequently to slow the spread of all three of these illnesses. As always, contact your personal physician for healthcare guidance.
August 26, 2021 Updates from Governor Pritzker
Today, Governor Pritzker announced a COVID-19 vaccine requirement for healthcare workers, Pre-K-12 teachers and staff, higher education personnel and students to slow the spread of the Delta variant.
Additionally, all Illinois residents are now required to wear masks indoors, regardless of vaccination status.
Downstate communities with lower vaccination rates are experiencing a sharp increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations.
August 23, 2021 Update from the Food and Drug Administration
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the first COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccine has been known as the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine, and will now be marketed as Comirnaty (koe-mir’-na-tee), for the prevention of COVID-19 disease in individuals 16 years of age and older. The vaccine also continues to be available under emergency use authorization (EUA), including for individuals 12 through 15 years of age and for the administration of a third dose in certain immunocompromised individuals.
August 20, 2021 - Cook County Department of Public Health Announces Indoor Mask Mandate Regardless of Vaccination Status
Masks Required Indoors effective August 23, 2021
The Cook County Department of Public Health has announced that effective August 23, 2021: "Any individual aged two and older and able to medically tolerate a mask shall be required to wear a mask when indoors in a public place, regardless of vaccination status."
This guidance is being issued in response to recent increases in the COVID-19 positivity rate in Cook County.
For the purposes of this Executive Order, indoor public spaces include any common or shared space in: (1) a residential multi-unit building or (2) any non-residential building, including but not limited to retail stores, restaurants, bars/taverns, health and fitness clubs, museums, hotels, personal services, performance venues, movie theaters, commercial buildings, event venues, healthcare settings, congregate facilities, on public transportation and in transportation hubs.
Click on the link to read the entire Executive Order.
August 20, 2021 Update from the Cook County Department of Public Health
The Cook county Department of Public Health now has a program in place to offer rides to and from vaccination appointments.
August 18, 2021 Update Regarding the Delta Variant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
August 11, 2021 Update from the Illinois Department of Public Health
The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is launching a new immunization portal, Vax Verify, that will allow Illinois residents 18 years and older to check their COVID-19 vaccination record. Vax Verify can be accessed at https://idphportal.illinois.gov.
The verification system follows best practices to protect confidential health information. In order to download proof of vaccination, residents will go through a brief, one-time identity verification process to gain access to their immunization history. The State of Illinois utilizes Experian® as its identity verification service provider. Individuals who have placed a freeze on their credit will need to unfreeze their credit with Experian® and wait 24 hours before completing the registration process. After completing registrations, individuals can re-freeze their credit by contacting Experian®.
After the verification process, individuals can see their own record in the Illinois Comprehensive Automated Immunization Registry Exchange (I-CARE).
Immunization records are kept confidential and only the individual can access their vaccination history. Parents should talk with their child’s provider to confirm their vaccination status. Some individuals with very common names will need to take additional steps to securely prove their identities.
Go to vaccines.gov or call 1-800-232-0233 to find COVID-19 vaccine locations near you.
August 5, 2021 Update from President Ballerine
August 4, 2021 Update from Governor Pritzker
Gov. Pritzker has announced a Mask Requirement for Pre-K-12 schools and long term care facilities to help prevent the spread of the highly transmissible COVID-19 Delta Variant.
Additionally, employees at state operated congregate living facilities will be required to receive the COVID-19 vaccine by October 4th to protect vulnerable residents.
Hospitalizations, ICU occupancy and ventilator usage due to COVID-19 infection are increasing across Illinois.
As COVID-19 infection rates across the state continue to increase and with a number of school districts not yet adopting CDC guidance on masking, Governor JB Pritzker and IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike today announced masks will be required for students, teachers, and staff at pre-kindergarten-12th grade schools and day cares across the state. The new requirement formalizes CDC guidance released in July on universal masking for both unvaccinated and vaccinated people in schools to ensure a safe return to classrooms.
The governor also announced his intent to require all state employees working in congregate facilities to receive the COVID-19 vaccine by October 4th. The state is informing the unions representing these employees of its intention to move forward with this requirement, which covers employees at the Departments of Human Services, Veterans’ Affairs, Corrections and Juvenile Justice working in congregate facilities. The state is also requiring universal masking in private long-term care facilities and strongly encourages owners of private facilities to join the state in adopting vaccination requirements.
The new measures are part of the state’s ongoing effort to combat a new surge as the Delta variant rapidly spreads among the unvaccinated. Since COVID-19 metrics reached their lowest points earlier this summer, cases have soared by a factor of nearly 10, hospitalizations and ICU rates have more than doubled in a month, and the number of COVID patients requiring a ventilator has multiplied nearly 2.5 times over since July 16th. In June, 96 percent of people hospitalized in Illinois with COVID-19 were unvaccinated or only partially vaccinated, with the majority of those hospitalizations occurring in residents under 60 years old.
In preparation for the start of the upcoming school year and in response to the highly contagious Delta variant, all students, teachers, and staff at pre-kindergarten – 12th grade schools and day cares will be required to wear masks regardless of vaccination status, effective immediately. This guidance is in line with recommendations from the CDC.
The state is also requiring universal masking in long-term care facilities regardless of vaccination status.
Illinois is home to 1.8 million children under the age of 12 who are not yet eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. With the Delta variant infecting the younger population at a greater rate and with people under 29 years old now accounting for 12 percent of COVID hospitalizations in June, requiring the use of masks is the most effective tool to allow students to return to their classrooms safely while protecting them from the virus. Mask wearing will also help prevent unvaccinated students from transmitting the virus to more vulnerable members of their broader communities.
The mask requirement is inclusive of youth sports and activities, with masks now required for all indoor extracurriculars and sports. In line with CDC guidance, masks are not required for activities outdoors where transmission risks and rates are lower.
The administration is providing free testing to all pre-K-12 schools in Illinois outside of Chicago, which received a separate federal funding allocation for testing.
To help schools across the state protect the health and safety of students and staff, the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) has distributed 2.5 million free face masks to public schools since the beginning of the pandemic. The free masks grant every child the ability to access the learning opportunities provided by their school in person, regardless of their ability to purchase a face covering or make one at home. The administration will continue to supply masks to school districts as they request assistance.
July 28, 2021 Update from the Illinois Department of Public Health - Recommendations for Fully Vaccinated People
July 27, 2021 Update from the Centers for Disease Control - New Masking Recommendations
May 13, 2021 Update from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
On Thursday, May 13, the CDC updated guidance for fully vaccinated individuals.
- Fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear a mask or physically distance in any setting, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.
- Fully vaccinated people can refrain from testing following a known exposure unless they are residents or employees of a correctional or detention facility or a homeless shelter.
Find additional information here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/fully-vaccinated-guidance.html.
May 4, 2021 Update from the Cook County Department of Public Health
March 15 update from the Illinois Department of Public Health
With vaccine allocations increasing, the Illinois Department of Public Health has launched a call center to bridge the digital divide and assist with vaccine appointments. The call center is open 7 days a week from 6:00 a.m. to midnight. The number to call is 833-621-1284.
The call center is intended to assist people who do not have access to or who are having difficulty navigating online services in making appointments to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. As Illinois begins to receive significantly more vaccine from the federal government and appointments become more widely available, this call center will be critical in bridging the digital divide and ensuring the vaccine reaches all communities.
There are approximately 500 agents answering calls with the ability to expand during peak periods. The call center has English and Spanish speaking call agents with the availability for translation into other languages.
Call agents will help individuals with access to online services navigate the various registration sites. However, if the individual does not have access to online services or is unable to navigate the site, the agent will make an appointment on their behalf. Individuals will need to provide the agent with their name, address, email (if available), mobile phone number, date of birth, and eligibility. The agent WILL NOT ask for any financial information and the call center WILL NOT share information with the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency.
During heavy calling periods, callers could experience wait times before speaking with an agent. In the coming week, the call center will offer the option for callers to leave a message and receive a call back when an agent is available. The toll-free number can take TTY calls. For general questions about COVID-19 and Illinois’ guidance, call 800-889-3931 or email DPH.SICK@illinois.gov.
March 12, 2021 Update from the CDC
February 16 Updates from the CDC - Guidelines for Masks
Types of Masks
There are many types of masks you can use to protect yourself and others from getting and spreading COVID-19. Cloth masks can be made from a variety of fabrics, and many types of cloth masks are available. Do not wear cloth masks with exhalation valves or vents, single layer or masks made of thin fabric that don’t block light. Disposable face masks are widely available. Do not wear disposable masks with gaps around the sides of the face or nose, or if wet or dirty.
Improve How Your Mask Protects You
When choosing a mask, look at how well it fits, how well it filters the air, and how many layers it has. Make sure your mask fits snugly against your face. Gaps can let air with respiratory droplets leak in and out around the edges of the mask. Pick a mask with layers to keep your respiratory droplets in and others’ out. A mask with layers will stop more respiratory droplets getting inside your mask or escaping from your mask if you are sick.
Your Guide to Masks
Wear a mask correctly and consistently for the best protection. Be sure to wash your hands or use hand sanitizer before putting on a mask and do not touch the mask when wearing it. If you have to often touch/adjust your mask, it doesn’t fit you properly, and you may need to find a different mask or make adjustments.
February 10, 2021 Update from the Cook County Department of Public Health
The Cook County Department of Public Health today issued comprehensive updated COVID-19 guidance applicable to individuals and organizations. The guidance applies to bars, restaurants, clubs, social events and gatherings, indoor and outdoor activities, arts and cultural institutions, health and fitness centers, personal service establishments, retail establishments, offices and transportation.
Please continue wearing a face covering, washing hands frequently and watching your distance. COVID-19 positivity rates continue to trend downward in our area. Let's keep up the good work!
February 5, 2021 COVID-19 Update from Governor Pritzker
The number of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccination locations across Illinois continues to increase. Today, 80 new locations have been added to the list of COVID-19 vaccination locations open to the public for a current total of 390 locations. The new sites include 78 additional Walgreens locations for a total of 170 stores across the state, as well as two Illinois National Guard supported locations in Cook and St. Clair counties.
An additional Illinois National Guard assisted site opened today at Triton College. There are now 12 State supported COVID-19 vaccination locations. Locations near Riverside include:
• Morton East Adolescent Health Center – 2423 S. Austin Blvd., Cicero
• North Riverside Health Center – 1800 S. Harlem Ave., North Riverside
• John H. Stroger, Jr. Hospital – 1969 Ogden Ave., Chicago
• Triton College – 2000 5th Ave., River Grove, T Building on the East Campus
While the state is working to increase the number of vaccines administered daily, we are limited by the amount of vaccine available and allocated by the federal government. Vaccinations are available only by appointment at this time and we encourage people to check back frequently for open appointments. Until the supply is increased, there will be a great demand and we ask everyone to be patient. Individuals should be signing up for an appointment to receive their second dose while they are getting their first vaccination.
For information on how to make an appointment to receive the vaccine, updates on the state’s plan and eligibility, and answers to frequently asked questions about the COVID-19 vaccine, go to coronavirus.illinois.gov.
February 2, 2021 Update from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity
Riverside is now in Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois Plan. Guidelines for various activities follow. Residents are urged to please remain vigilant in wearing a face covering in public and to observe social distancing and hand washing protocols. Keep up the good work Riverside! We're all in this together!
January 25, 2021 Update from President Sells
On January 25, 2021, the State of Illinois entered Phase 1B of the Illinois Vaccination Administration Plan which opens eligibility to frontline essential workers including first responders, those who work in education, food service, agriculture, manufacturing, corrections workers and inmates, postal workers, public transit workers, grocery store workers and staff at shelters and day care centers and all Illinois residents over the age of 65.
Vaccine administration for Riverside residents is under the jurisdiction of the Cook County Department of Public Health and State of Illinois. There are two websites where residents can find information:
It is important to note that vaccine remains in short supply nationwide and every state is facing a large demand for the vaccine and a shortage of supply. Residents are encouraged to check with their primary care doctor regarding vaccine availability and check these website regularly for available appointments.
Even as more people become eligible and receive the vaccine, we must be careful not to let down our guard. As Dr. Fauci has pointed out, we will not reach the necessary numbers to create herd immunity until approximately 85% of our population has been vaccinated. In addition, it is also known that even those who have received a vaccine can still carry and transmit the virus. So let us all pull together during this final stretch to keep one another safe. If we continue to practice the three Ws—Wash your hands, Wear a facial covering, Watch your distance—we can get to the goal of herd immunity with fewer cases and fewer casualties. Let us make sure that none of our friends or family get sick because we just got tired. The days are getting longer and summer is coming. We will soon be able to enjoy outdoor activities again. If all goes according to plan, we can start getting back to normal then. But for now we must stay the course!
January 22, 2021 Illinois Department of Public Health Update on Vaccinations
For the most updated information regarding the number of vaccinations administered in the State of Illinois, please click here.
January 19 Update form Governor Pritzker and Cook County Board President Preckwinkle
Vaccination Site Opens in North Riverside
Building on the state’s Vaccination Administration Plan, Governor Pritzker announced the locations of four state-support vaccination sites across Cook County that began vaccinating Illinois residents on January 19, 2021. The sites are being supported with assistance from the Illinois National Guard.
Cook County Locations
Cook County Health’s North Riverside Health Center, 1800 S. Harlem Avenue, North Riverside, IL 60546
Cook County Health’s Robbins Health Center, 13450 S. Kedzie Avenue, Robbins, IL 60472
Cook County Health’s Morton East Adolescent Health Center, 2423 S. Austin Boulevard, Cicero, IL 60804
Cook County Health’s Cottage Grove Health Center, 1645 Cottage Grove Avenue, Ford Heights, IL 60411
All four locations will be open Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. They will be available for health care workers who are part of Phase 1A before opening to those eligible for Phase 1B on January 25. For more information on vaccinations in Cook County please visit https://cookcountypublichealth.org/.
Beginning January 25, the state will move into phase 1B of the vaccine plan and sites will begin vaccinations for the eligible population by appointment only. As a part of Phase 1B, all residents over the age of 65 and frontline essential workers can receive the vaccine. Additionally, as part of the state’s plan, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is partnering with large pharmacies to launch hundreds of new sites in communities across Illinois.
The IL National Guard is also deploying to regions across the state to stand up new sites and build out additional capacity at existing sites. More information on additional locations and how to make appointments will be available prior to the start of Phase 1B.
Phase 1A: Illinois is currently in Phase 1A of the state's vaccination plan which targets frontline healthcare workers along with residents and staff of long-term care facilities. The goal is to fortify the healthcare workforce by removing the most exposed workers from the cycle of illness and infection as well as protect our most vulnerable residents. The state estimates that all interested residents in Phase 1A will be vaccinated in the coming weeks.
Phase 1B: Once Illinois makes substantial progress in Phase 1A and federal vaccine deliveries increase, Phase 1B will expand to frontline essential workers and residents age 65 and over. The frontline essential workers designation includes many residents who carry a higher risk of COVID-19 exposure because of their work duties, often because they are unable to work from home, and/or they must work closely to others without being able to socially distance. This include first responders, education, food and agriculture, manufacturing, corrections workers and inmates, USPS workers, public transit workers, grocery store workers and staff at shelters and day cares.
Residents can complete a form on the Cook County Department of Public Health website to enroll in email updates about COVID-19 vaccination.
This form is for residents to receive vaccine updates. It does not put residents on a wait list for the vaccine. As soon as Village staff has more information about vaccine availability, it will be shared with the public.
Please visit the COVID-19 page of the Village website to read the most recent update from the Illinois Department of Public Health.
January 14, 2021 Update from the Cook County Department of Public Health
Residents can complete a form on Cook County’s Department of Public Health website to enroll in email updates about COVID-19 vaccination.
This form is for residents to receive vaccine updates. It does not put residents on a wait list for the vaccine. As soon as Village staff has more information about vaccine availability, it will be shared with the public.
January 12 Update from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC)
January 12, 2021 Update from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Tips for Improving Ventilation in your Home
Bring as much fresh air into your home as possible. Bringing fresh, outdoor air into your home helps keep virus particles from accumulating inside.
- If it’s safe to do so, open doors and windows as much as you can to bring in fresh, outdoor air. While it’s better to open them wide, even having a window cracked open slightly can help.
- If you can, open multiple doors and windows to allow more fresh air to move inside.
- Do not open windows and doors if doing so is unsafe for you or others (for example, presence of young children and pets, risk of falling, triggering asthma symptoms, high levels of outdoor pollution).
- If opening windows or doors is unsafe, consider other approaches for reducing virus particles in the air, such as using air filtration and bathroom and stove exhaust fans.
January 6, 2021 Update from the Illinois Department of Public Health Regarding Vaccine Distribution
New Year's Eve Guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC)
The Village Board and Staff wish everyone a safe and happy new year. Please celebrate responsibly.
December 2 Updates from the Illinois Department of Public Health
If you or someone you love is experiencing stress due to the COVID-19 pandemic, or if the pandemic has compounded stressful situations in your life, don't suffer in silence. Please click on the following link for a comprehensive list of resources available for mental health, substance abuse, depression, domestic abuse and neglect. Help is available.
Additionally, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) will be doing mobile COVID testing at two locations nearby in the coming days:
Melrose Park - Village Office, 2701 W. Lake Street, 8AM - 4PM, Saturday, December 5 & 9AM - 3PM, Sunday, December 6
Forest Park - Ferrara Pan Candy Company, 7301 West Harrison Street, 8AM - 4PM, Sunday, December 6
November 24 Update from the Illinois Department of Public Health
The Illinois Department of Public Health will have a mobile testing site at the Lombard Village Hall, 255 E. Wilson Avenue, from 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m., or until supplies run out, on Friday, November 27. Please click on the following link for mobile testing information: http://www.dph.illinois.gov/testing/mobile-testing-sites.
Testing done by IDPH is free.
Residents may also make an appointment for a drive-up COVID test locally at the CVS in North Riverside.
November 23 Thanksgiving Recommendations from the CDC
November 18 Village Offices Closed to the Public
Currently, Region 10, Suburban Cook County (which includes Riverside) has a 7-day positivity rate of 15.9%. Based on the current positivity rates and out of an abundance of caution, effective Wednesday, November 18, 2020, Village Offices will be closed to the public until further notice. Despite being closed to the public, there will not be a disruption in service levels to residents. Village staff will continue to be available by phone, 708-447-2700 or email from 8 AM to 4:30 PM. Residents are encouraged to conduct business online or by phone.
November 13 A Message from Fire Chief Matt Buckley
September 24 Update from the Illinois Department of Public Health
August 14 Update from President Sells
Riverside, like most of Illinois, is experiencing an uptick in COVID-19 cases. All of the science indicates that this trend is likely to get worse as we move into the fall and winter months. And the reason that cases are increasing is because collectively we are letting down our guard.
All of us have one responsibility during this time -- to do no harm. Asymptomatic and presymptomatic cases are the major vectors for transmission, and none of us know at any given moment if we are sick and capable of transmitting the disease. The novel coronavirus is a potentially deadly virus that does not distinguish between political ideology, age, race, or gender. COVID-19 is an equal opportunity disease.
We all know the drill; we just have to do it:
- Stay home if we are not feeling well and avoid contact with others.
- Wear a facial covering when we are out and about and cannot properly physically distance ourselves from others.
- Wash our hands more than we think we need to. Use hand sanitizer when unable to wash hands.
- Physically distance -- six feet minimum; and don’t be shy about asking others to do the same.
- Avoid crowds.
Please do your part in helping to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Our lives, and the lives of people we love, depend on it.
If you want to keep track of cases in Riverside and other communities, go to: https://ccdphcd.shinyapps.io/covid19/
August 11 Update from the Cook County Bureau of Economic Development
The Cook County Bureau of Economic Development announced yesterday that the COVID-19 Rental Assistance Program is now open. The Rental Assistance Program helps suburban Cook County residents having difficulty paying their rent as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. It pays up to three months of overdue or future rent. Rental payments will be sent directly to landlords by the Housing Authority of Cook County. The program is part of the Cook County Community Recovery Initiative, funded by the federal CARES Act. The application deadline is August 18, 2020. Learn more and apply here.
August 10 Update from the Illinois Housing Development Authority
If you have been unable to pay your rent due to COVID-19, Emergency Rental Assistance is available. It is important to continue paying as much of your rent as you can. Also, talk to your landlord on a regular basis about your situation.
Funds are limited so complete your application as soon as possible. Only one application per household is allowed and an application is not a guarantee of assistance.
If you are approved, you will receive a grant of $5,000 that will be sent to your landlord to be applied against your rent. Learn more and apply here.
August 4 Video Updates from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Regarding
- What to do if you think or you know you had COVID-19
- Guidance for Visiting Family & Friends at Higher Risk of Serious Illness
- How to Wear a Mask
August 3 Update from the Cook County Department of Public Health
The Cook County Department of Public Health (CCDPH) has issued guidance for bars, fitness clubs, personal care businesses and other gathering places to respond to a new surge in COVID-19 cases in suburban Cook County, particularly among young adults.
The positivity rate is approaching one of the two threshold measures – a sustained increase in the 7-day rolling average in the positivity rate - in the state’s Restore Illinois Mitigation Plan. The positivity rate is a measure of the percentage of people that test positive for COVID-19, averaged over 10 days. On July 31, 2020, the positivity rate was 5.8% in suburban Cook County, up from 5.2% July 22. COVID-19 rates for people in their 20s are now about 2.5 times higher than they were at the end of March, and this age group now has the highest rates of COVID-19.
“We get it. It’s summer. Young people are tired of the restrictions,” said President Preckwinkle. “But the virus is still with us. We need to get the word out and encourage young people to be patient. Physical distancing and wearing a mask is the minimum we need people to do to protect themselves and their friends and family.”
Suburban Cook County has not seen a reduction in hospital capacity that would immediately threaten surge capabilities – the second threshold measure - but there have been two consecutive days of increased hospital admissions. As of July 31, 31% percent of ICU beds and 36% of surge beds remain available, above the 20% threshold. “If we don’t remain vigilant, we will face far more restrictive mitigation efforts and we will see more disease and more death. We are encouraging everyone to follow the ongoing guidelines and businesses to immediately adopt our recommendations, so that they don’t become requirements,” said Dr. Rachel Rubin, Cook County Department of Public Health Co-Lead and Senior Medical Officer.
Guidance Measures include:
• Bars, taverns, breweries and other establishments that serve alcohol for on-site consumption without a retail food license are being asked to serve customers outdoors only.
• Restaurants that serve alcohol need to continue to abide by ongoing COVID-19 guidance and existing regulations.
• Maximum party size and table occupancy at restaurants, bars, taverns, and breweries should be reduced to 6 people (indoor or outdoor).
• Indoor fitness class size should be reduced to a maximum of 10 people.
• Personal service businesses should discontinue services (shaves, facials) that require the removal of face coverings.
• Residential property managers should limit guest entry to 6 people per unit to avoid indoor gatherings and parties.
In addition, businesses and workplaces should:
• Institute remote work for high-risk individuals and continue to support telework for as many workers as possible.
• Retail establishments should maintain no more than 50% capacity, which is the current recommendation.
July 20 Update from the Cook County Department of Public Health
Cook County Department of Public Health officials have issued emergency travel guidance directing travelers entering or returning to suburban Cook County from states with surging COVID-19 rates to quarantine for 14 days since their last contact within the identified.
The guidance is consistent with Chicago’s July 2nd order, and applies to states that have greater than 15 new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents per day, over a 7-day rolling average. There are exceptions for essential workers traveling for work purposes and other specific circumstances.
While Cook County, including Chicago and suburbs, and Illinois have seen steep declines in new cases, hospitalizations and deaths, other parts of the country are seeing a surge in new cases, and the country overall, is setting new highs for daily COVID-19 cases.
“We have come a long way in Cook County and Illinois and we want to keep it that way,” said Cook County Department of Public Health Co-Lead and Senior Medical Officer, Dr. Rachel Rubin. “It is summer and we know people want to travel, but we have to remain vigilant to keep our gains and avoid having to close places we’ve only just reopened.”
Travelers from the following states, including suburban Cook County (except Evanston and Skokie) residents returning from these states, will be directed to quarantine upon arrival from:
- North Carolina
- South Carolina
The list of included states will be updated on the CCDPH website at www.cookcountypublichealth.org every Tuesday afternoon.
As of July 16, there were 156,693 cases in Illinois, 40,805 cases in suburban Cook County and 55,857 cases in Chicago.
“Our positivity rates are quite low, but that can change, as we have seen in neighboring states,” said Cook County Department of Public Health Co-Lead and Senior Medical Officer, Dr. Kiran Joshi. “Prevention is the best medicine. We ask everyone to avoid travel to the most affected areas. If you must travel, quarantine for 14 days to protect others and help us stop the spread of COVID-19.”
For answers to frequently asked questions, please visit www.cookcountypublichealth.org/communicable-diseases/covid-19/covid-19-travel-guidance.
July 15 Update from ComEd
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, ComEd is offering residential customer assistance programs. Please see the flyer that follows for more information.
June 30 Update from Parks & Recreation Director Malchiodi
This year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Village of Riverside and Friends of the Fourth are bringing the July 4th Parade to you! You will be able to view the parade from the safety and comfort of your own front yard. This year’s parade will honor first responders and will feature police & fire vehicles and a Zydeco Band; and best of all, Riverside TV will be filming residents as we wind through the streets of Riverside, so show your patriotic spirit!
Here’s the plan:
- 9:00 a.m. - Parade begins
- 9:00 – 9:30 a.m. - 1st Division
- 9:30 – 10:00 a.m. - Harrington Park area
- 10:00 – 10:15 a.m. – Hollywood area west of 1st Avenue
- 10:15 – 10:40 a.m. - Big Ball Park area
- 10:40 – 11:00 - Patriots Park area
- 11:00 – 11:30 a.m. - Blythe Park area
These times are approximate. Don’t worry. You’ll hear us coming!
Unfortunately, we cannot safely visit the following streets in Riverside: Hass Avenue., North Cowley Road, Robinson Court, Byrd Road, portions of North & South Delaplaine Road, North Herbert Road and Bartram Road.
Residents are invited to participate in the following contests:
- Most Decorated Yard,
- Best 4th of July Theme, and
- Red, White, and Blue Spirit Award!
Send in your photo or video to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than Monday, July 6. Winners will be chosen from all submissions. Have a Happy and Safe Independence Day!
June 29 Update from Parks & Recreation Director Malchiodi
Great news! Riverside playgrounds are now open. Staff will be removing caution tape and checking equipment. Please use caution when visiting playgrounds and adhere to the following guidelines:
• DO NOT USE playgrounds if you are experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms.
• Maintain a 6 foot distance between yourself and others at all times.
• Face coverings must be worn anytime physical distancing cannot be maintained.
• If your child is unable to maintain a 6 foot physical distance from other children, please leave the area and return when there are fewer individuals using the playground.
• Playground equipment is not cleaned regularly. Please follow CDC guidelines and wash or sanitize hands frequently. It’s always a good idea to keep some hand sanitizer or wipes with you so you can clean everyone’s hands after using the equipment.
If you are experiencing any symptoms related to COVID-19, please do not enter Riverside Parks & Recreation facilities, playgrounds or parks. For more information on COVID-19 and symptoms, please visit cdc.gov.
June 23 Update from Community Development Director Abt
On June 26, Riverside will move into Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois Plan. This will allow for allow for more recreational opportunities and for more of our businesses to re-open, increase capacity and services. Governor Pritzker has released Phase 4 guidelines which can be viewed here.
Phase 4 marks the re-opening of zoos and museums as well as indoor dining, outdoor spectator events and meetings and social events of up to 50 people. Per IDPH recommendations, we should all continue to wear face coverings, frequently wash our hands and maintain 6 ft. of social distancing to minimize the spread of COVID-19.
May 29 Update from Parks & Recreation Director Malchiodi
With Illinois moving into Phase 3 of Governor Pritzker’s “Restore Illinois” plan, we are able to expand our recreation opportunities. While this is a step in the right direction, we are still monitoring the situation very closely and are asking residents to remain vigilant and adhere to the following guidelines when participating in recreational activities. This will allow everyone to engage in outdoor activities in the safest manner. Playgrounds remain closed at this time, but athletic fields and tennis courts will be available for use. Details follow.
May 29 Update from President Sells - Outdoor Dining Guidance
As patrons, we can all do our part to help our restaurants as they navigate the regulations of the newly available outdoor dining. The following are based on the Center for Disease Control and the Illinois Phase 3 Restaurant and Bar Reopening guidelines.
- If you are not feeling well, please stay home.
- If possible, call ahead to reserve your table. If you have to wait for your table, please wait in your car or well away from the dining area.
- Limit of six persons per table, including children.
- Wash your hands before leaving home.
- Wear a facial covering over your nose and mouth whenever you are not seated.
- Except for your dining party, please maintain physical distancing of six feet and do not visit other tables.
- If you use the restroom, please wash your hands and then use a disposable towel to open the door when leaving. Follow restroom routes identified by management.
- Remember that servers can only provide disposable condiments; they cannot bring salt and pepper shakers, a bottle of ketchup, etc.
- Be patient. Servers are working under strict protocols to keep you safe and that is going to mean extra time.
- Be considerate of others and limit conversation to your table. Remember that COVID-19 is spread primarily through moisture droplets, so the louder you talk the more droplets you emit.
- No smoking or vaping is allowed in or near outdoor dining areas.
May 18 Update from the Illinois Department of Public Health
While staying home, social distancing, and strict hand hygiene are still preferred methods for preventing further spread of COVID-19, facemasks or face coverings are one more tool that may be used by the general public and essential workers to protect each other from respiratory droplets produced when they cough, sneeze, or talk.
Any individual who is over age two (2) and able to medically tolerate a face covering (a mask or cloth face covering) should cover their nose and mouth with a face covering when in a public place or working and they are unable to maintain a six (6) foot social distance. Face coverings are specifically required in public indoor spaces such as stores.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain, especially in areas of significant community-based transmission. CDC advises the use of simple cloth face coverings to slow the spread of the virus and help people who may have the virus and do not know it from transmitting it to others.
For additional important information on preventing the spread of COVID-19, please click here to read the IDPH Press Release.
May 5 Update from President Sells
According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, Riverside currently is posted as having 43 confirmed COVID-19 cases. But please remember that this number is based on available testing results. The fact is, there is no way to know who might be asymptomatic or presymptomatic carriers of the virus and therefore capable of transmitting the illness to others. This past weekend when the weather was nice, I saw people letting down their guard – having people over for cookouts, non-related groups of children playing together, and people going into Riverside Foods while refusing to wear a facial covering.
We must not be tempted by such behaviors. They are the surest way to see another spike of cases, and deaths, come early and mid-summer. Please do your part in protecting others and don’t succumb to bad practices just because somebody else doing so. It’s a cliché, but every chain is only as strong as its weakest link. Please don’t be that link.
May 2 Update from Village Staff
All Playgrounds and Athletic Fields will remain closed through May 31st. The Parks & Recreation Department, in coordination with the Fire Department, have been closely monitoring COVID-19. The parks, green spaces and Swan Pond may only be utilized for transient activities such as walking, biking and running. Group play and groups in the parks are prohibited. Please note that if you cannot maintain social distancing of at least 6 feet while walking, biking or running, then you must wear a mask, per Executive Order 2020-32 by the Governor of the State of Illinois.
The Village appreciates your understanding and support during this challenging and unprecedented time
April 27 Update from the Illinois Department of Public Health
As capacity expands, testing is now available for people who:
- Have COVID-19 symptoms (cough, shortness of breath and fever) or
- Have a risk factor, such as contact with someone confirmed to have COVID-19
- A compromised immune system or a serious chronic medical condition
Testing is also available for those with or without symptoms who:
- Work in a health care facility
- Work in correctional facilities, such as jails or prisons
- Serve as first responders, such as paramedics, emergency medical technicians, law enforcement officers or firefighters
- Support critical infrastructure, such as workers in grocery stores, pharmacies, restaurants, gas stations, public utilities, factories, childcare and sanitation.
April 25 Update from Governor Pritzker
At his COVID-19 Press Briefing today, Governor Pritzker announced that beginning May 1, everyone in the State of Illinois will be required to wear a face covering to combat the spread of the COVID-19 virus when in public and unable to observe social distancing guidelines. This decision is based on guidance provided by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH).
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) now recommend wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain, such as grocery stores and pharmacies. In addition to practicing social distancing, cloth face coverings help slow the spread of COVID-19 and help stop those who may unknowingly have the virus from transmitting it to others. The most effective measures for preventing further spread of COVID-19, however, remain staying at home when sick, maintaining physical separation between other people while out in public (at least six feet) and frequently washing hands with either soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub.
Individuals should wear a mask or face covering when they must leave their home and it is impractical to maintain six feet of physical distance between themselves and others. The covering can be a scarf, a bandana, or a mask you make at home. It should have multiple layers of fabric and should be opaque (not show light) when held up to a light source.
Do not touch your eyes, nose, or mouth when removing the mask. Make sure to wash your hands immediately after removing it. Clean the mask frequently by using a washing machine.
Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age two, anyone who has trouble breathing or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.
Cloth face coverings should:
- fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
- be secure
- include multiple layers of fabric
- allow for breathing without restriction
- be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape
April 24 Update from President Sells
Governor Pritzker has extended the stay-at-home order until May 30. Here are some details:
· There are no changes to the current restrictions and allowances regarding restaurants and bars.
· There are no changes to the current restrictions placed on barbers, hair salons or other salons.
· Face coverings shall be required to be worn by all individuals when in public places and when not able to maintain adequate social distancing, except for children under age 2 and when with members of the same household. Face coverings will be required in public indoor spaces.
· All essential businesses may remain open consistent with the original executive order. Grocery and other stores designated as essential shall reduce their occupancy capacity to 50%, institute one-way aisles and signage for customers, eliminate the usage of reusable bags, and will be asked to limit the number of individuals from the same household shopping at the same time.
· Some state parks will be opened. Activities such as hiking, fishing, boating, walking and running are allowed, given adequate social distancing. Fishing and boating will only be allowed in groups no larger than two per boat. The decision to open or close community parks remains under local authority.
· Golf courses shall be allowed to operate within strict parameters.
· Pet grooming services shall be allowed to operate.
· Greenhouses, garden centers, nurseries and landscape supply companies shall be allowed to operate.
· All retail stores, including those previously closed as non-essential, will be authorized to fulfill online orders through curbside pickup or delivery.
April 20 Update from Community Development Director Abt
We’ve heard that the Federal government’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) has already exhausted its funds as has the Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) program, however they are working on making additional funds available. We know now how quickly these funds go and we want you to be ready. Please make sure you are signed up for alerts from SBA Illinois and Cook County Bureau of Economic Development so you are notified as soon as these programs become available again.
- Please sign-up for regular COVID-19 Updates from the Bureau of Economic Development.
- Sign up for Cook Alerts to receive regular updates from Cook County about COVID-19. Text ALERTCOOK to 888-777 and you will receive rapid, simple and direct updates.
- County website updated daily with information for the business community.
- Sign up for email updates.
Visit sba.gov/coronavirus for updates on the loan programs, guidance for businesses and employers, and other SBA resources.
Follow @SBA_Illinois on Twitter.
- E-mail questions to email@example.com.
I hope that some of you were able to obtain some of the first round of relief funding. Here are some additional resources for you. Some are webinars to help you with the next round of relief funding, some are links to county and state programs that are still available for our small businesses and independent contractors and “gig workers” in Riverside. Links to these resources will also be made available on the Riverside COVID-19 webpage.
- Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity Emergency Resource Page.
- Cook County Community Recovery Fund: One-time, zero interest loans of up to $20,000. Applications open in mid-April. Sign up here to be notified of when the application period opens.
- Illinois Small Business Emergency Loan Fund: Low interest loans of up to $50,000 for small businesses with fewer than 50 workers and revenue less than $3 million. You can initiate an application with Accion here.
- DCEO Webinar for minority business owners on April 24th.
- Cook County Webinar on needs of restaurants in applying for the next round of PPP. Sign up for Cook County updates to receive webinar invite.
Please feel free to contact me and let me know how we can be of additional service.
April 17 Update from Fire Chief Buckley
Riverside’s first responders are reporting an increasing number of calls to address mental health and substance use-related issues. As we remain inside to protect ourselves and others from the spread of COVID-19, fear, uncertainty, and other stressors can take their toll. Please click on the following link for a list of government resources to assist those who are struggling. As always, call Riverside Police and Fire Departments at 911 in case of emergency.
Click here for Mental Health Resources. Help is just a call or a click away.
April 17 Update from Governor Pritzker Regarding Schools
Following careful consideration of the science and in close consultation with public health leaders and experts in Illinois and across the nation, Governor JB Pritzker announced that in-person learning in schools will not resume during the 2019-2020 school year, with remote learning days to continue for all pre-k through 12th grade students. Read the Governor’s Press Release here.
April 13 Update from Flood Brothers
Flood Brothers continues to operate on their regular Thursday schedule in Riverside. Yard waste and composting season has started. All refuse that does not fit into a wheeled cart or other approved container must be bagged. Bulk items are being collected along with appliances but residents must call 630-261-0400 to request a bulk item or appliance pickup.
Flood Brothers continues to take the precautions necessary to protect the health and safety of their employees as they handle refuse during this unprecedented time and asks for the community’s assistance in this regard. If anyone in your home is COVID-19 symptomatic, please make sure that all items being disposed of by your household are placed in sealed bags in an approved refuse container. This includes items that would normally be recycled separately. Please click here for complete details.
April 6 Update from Community Development Director Abt
The application period for the $350 billion in grants/loans through the Payroll Protection Program (PPP) is open.
IMPORTANT DETAILS ABOUT THE PROGRAM:
- Eligibility: You are eligible if you are a sole proprietor, partnership, C-Corp, S-Corp, LLC, Independent contractor, self-employed individual, 501c3 non-profit or 501c19 veteran organization.
- The loans/grants are forgivable for up to 100% as long as employers keep paying their workers
- Employers can borrow up to 250% of their average monthly payroll
Talk to your lender (or one of the local lenders listed here) today. Ask to apply for the Payroll Protection Program, also known as the SBA 7a program. Here is the link to the borrower application form.
Note: Many lenders have been overwhelmed by the response. Please continue to try to make contact as they work through the high demand and need.
Webinars and Local Resources
April 6 Update from Chief Weitzel
Riverside Police Chief Thomas Weitzel has ordered Community Service Officers to adjust their schedules and start enforcing social distancing in the community with an emphasis on parks, playgrounds, and athletic fields.
Both Community Service Officers’ hours were changed to 11:00 a.m.-7:00 p.m. These are part-time jobs and CSOs switch days so there is coverage throughout the week.
Community Service Officers will patrol parks, playgrounds, and athletic fields during their shifts every 30 minutes. They will be encouraging anyone in violation of the Governor’s Executive Order for social distancing, to adhere to the executive order and not congregate if it is a violation of the Governor’s directive. This is not a criminal enforcement mechanism. The goal is to have compliance and the CSOs have been instructed on the proper techniques for compliance.
The hours of 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. were selected due to several circumstances, including the fact that schools are off, eLearning takes place in the mornings and early afternoons, and afternoon/early evening are typically the height of outdoor activity in the village.
Chief Weitzel stated: “We want our residents to know that this is a community service initiative and not a criminal enforcement matter. This way we can help our residents make sure they are social distancing and we do our part to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus. My hope is that by the end of April we will no longer need these special assignments and will be on the downturn of the pandemic. However, we are fully prepared to continue special assignments, if the Governor keeps his order in place to stay at home.”
April 3 Update from Community Development Director Abt
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Illinois District Office is hosting free webinars for small businesses impacted by coronavirus. The SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program provides small businesses with working capital loans of up to $2 million that can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing. All Illinois small businesses can now apply for these low-interest disaster loans. The SBA webinars cover eligibility, use of proceeds, terms, filing requirements, and additional resources for small businesses. Webinars will continue as long as there is demand and may be found at sbaillinois.eventbrite.com.
UPCOMING SBA WEBINARS
The SBA’s Coronavirus (COVID-19): Small Business Guidance & Loan Resources web page includes information regarding:
- Paycheck Protection Program
- Economic Injury Disaster Loans and Loan Advance
- SBA Debt Relief
- SBA Express Bridge Loans
- Guidance for Businesses and Employers
- SBA Products and Resources
- Government Contracting
- Local Assistance
The SBA Illinois District Office provides additional resources and information on their website. If you need to speak with a small business coach or SBA team member, or have further questions about resources and programs, email Illinois.firstname.lastname@example.org.
March 29 Update from Chief Weitzel
The police substation at the Scout Cabin is for police officers reporting for duty only. There is no public access to this building and officers are not taking reports at this location. This is an effort to have officers separated from the main police facility to limit the possibility of officers contracting coronavirus.
Please call the Police Department non-emergency phone number, 708‑447‑2127, Monday through Friday between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. After hours, call 911 for all police-related services. If you come to the lobby of the Police Department (31 Riverside Road), it is suggested that you park your car in front of the station and call 911 for police service. The officers will respond to the front of the police station and speak to you where your car is parked. If you have to come into the lobby, there is a lobby phone you can pick up that directly rings at the consolidated dispatch center.
During this pandemic, we are trying to limit the amount of face-to-face contact officers have with individuals, so that we can continue to serve our community at full strength. These are temporary measures, and once the pandemic is deemed to be under control it is likely many of these directives will be lifted.
The police department has a vestibule that is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. That vestibule has a direct phone line to the consolidated dispatch center and will ring there 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
For emergency call 9-1-1
Anyone who needs additional information or has any questions can contact Chief Weitzel at email@example.com.
March 29 Update from Parks & Recreation Director Malchiodi
All Playgrounds and Athletic Fields are closed. The Riverside Parks & Recreation Department has been closely monitoring the Coronavirus health concern. We wanted to remind all residents that acting on Executive Order 2020-10 by the Governor of the State of Illinois, the Riverside Parks & Recreation Department has cancelled all programs, and closed all facilities, athletic fields, and playgrounds through Tuesday, April 7th.
Public Access to facilities, athletic fields, playgrounds, and programs is tentatively scheduled to resume on Wednesday, April 8th.
We appreciate your understanding and support during this challenging and unprecedented time.
March 27 Update from Community Development Director Abt
Attn: Riverside Small Businesses. Business Resources Available.
This week, the Governor announced a new package of emergency assistance for small businesses. Applications go live TODAY. More information on the assistance programs can be found at the link below. Assistance includes emergency loans for small businesses in any industry and a hospitality emergency grant program for restaurants, bars and hotels.
A comprehensive list of executive orders is available here: https://www2.illinois.gov/sites/coronavirus/Resources/Pages/ExecutiveOrders.aspx
March 27 Update from Chief Weitzel
As a precautionary measure only, the Police Department day shift will begin reporting for duty at the Scout Cabin on Fairbank Road starting this weekend. Residents may see police activity inside the Scout Cabin. Chief Weitzel wants them to know that no criminal activity is occurring there. The Police Department will be parking vehicles at the Scout Cabin so officers can report directly to that facility.
Officers will report to the Scout Cabin fully dressed and ready for duty. Officers will get in their assigned squads and then go out on patrol as usual. Roll call will be handled electronically or officers will meet at a public parking area to hold roll call where they can maintain social distancing. Even though residents may see police activity at the Scout Cabin and roll call being held in public parking lots, Chief Weitzel wants to ensure residents that this is a temporary measure during the COVID/19 pandemic.
Chief Weitzel hopes that separating some of the officers from the Riverside Road facility will assist in preventing, to the extent possible, the officers from contracting Coronavirus. There will be no uniforms, weapons, or equipment kept at the scout cabin. When officers report there, they will have their laptops with them to be able to do reports either from that facility or in their squads remotely. All physical arrests that must occur will be done at the Village of North Riverside Police Department and WC3 (central dispatch) in the Central Booking area there.
Any resident who has questions/concerns may contact Chief Weitzel at firstname.lastname@example.org.
MARCH 26 - URGENT MESSAGE FROM CHIEF BUCKLEY
I would like to start off by saying, Thank you! Thank you for doing your part to stay-at-home and keep social distancing.
As we continue to deal with the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic it is up to each and every one of us to do our part for the safety of our families and those around us. I understand that this has been a trying time for everyone, but we need to continue isolating ourselves to minimize the spread of this disease. Please remember that no one is immune to COVID-19, although it will affect all of us differently. It does not differentiate between young and old or what ethnicity you are or where you live in the world. Some individuals have the symptoms of a cold while others will be on a ventilator to assist them with breathing. Nevertheless, if we do not slow down the spread of this disease our hospitals will not be able to handle the number of truly sick individuals who will need lifesaving equipment to survive. There will not be enough hospital beds and ventilators available. This could be the case by the end of April if these drastic steps to stay-at-home and distance yourself from others are not followed.
I know that many have recently heard the term “bending the curve”. By bending the curve, healthcare professionals are trying to prevent the spike of sick people who need hospitalization and ventilators. To bend this curve and prevent a spike in the number of individuals that are sick, we must continue to strictly follow the stay-at-home order and ensure social distancing.
The bottom line is that together, we need to continue what we are doing and do better. Yesterday the temperature outside reached 55 degrees with sunshine. It was a great day for a walk, jog or bike ride. Everyone needed some fresh air. I went for a nice run, but kept to the social distancing as I passed people. I also understand that kids needed to get out a little, but they need to understand and parents need to continue to reinforce that they cannot play in groups or with friends that they would normally play with.
Again, thank you to everyone for doing their part, but please remember that we can do better to minimize the spread of this disease. I cannot stress this enough and it concerns me as a first responder and public safety official that we have a long way to go to contain this virus.
Please stay healthy and take care of your families. If there are any questions or needed assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me at 708-447-2123 x306 or by email email@example.com.
Riverside Fire Chief
March 24 Update from Village Manager Frances
COVID-19 Impact on FOIA Requests
On March 20, 2020, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker issued a Shelter In Place Order, which is effective March 21, 2020 at 5:00 p.m. to April 7, 2020. Accordingly, all Village staff is either unavailable or devoted to public safety tasks. In light of the foregoing, the Village respectfully requests that you consider waiting to submit your FOIA request until after the Shelter In Place Order has been lifted. Alternatively, the Village requests that you agree to waive the statutory response deadlines and allow the Village to respond to the request as soon as is practicable. If you are agreeable to waiving the response deadlines, please affirmatively state that in your request. In the event you do not choose one of the foregoing options, the Village will respond to your request pursuant to state law, which includes the ability to identify and deny a request if it is determined to be unduly burdensome.
Thank you in advance for your understanding and patience during this time.
March 23 Update from the Department of Public Works
Please DO NOT FLUSH WIPES and other non-flushable items. Not only can they clog a homeowner’s private sewer lateral, but they can also clog the public sewer mains and the filters at sewage treatment plants. Find additional information here.
March 22 Update from Police Chief Weitzel
The Governor’s Office is in the process of collecting and responding to questions regarding the state’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak. To help facilitate that process, they have created an email address, Gov.COVID19stakeholder@illinois.gov, where citizens may send questions, comments and recommendations. The Governor’s staff will then compile all inquiries and respond with answers.
This email address is not for an emergency situation where you may need police, fire, EMS or other village services. For any emergency situation, call 9-1-1.
March 21 Update from Police Chief Weitzel
Riverside Police remind residents about solicitation
The Village of Riverside is not permitting solicitation during this national crisis, and the Village will not be approving solicitation permits due to the governor’s executive order. Door-to-door solicitation, in compliance with the governor’s executive order, is being suspended in Riverside.
Any resident who observes a violation of the solicitation suspension can contact the West Central Consolidated Communications Center via 911. The suspension of solicitation is temporary in nature in the Village of Riverside. We will notify the public once the ban is lifted and the public health crisis has been deemed to have subsided.
March 21 Update from Parks & Recreation Director Malchiodi
The Riverside Parks & Recreation Department has been closely monitoring the Coronavirus health concern. Based on the rapidly evolving situation and acting on Executive Order 2020-10 issued by the Governor of the State of Illinois, the Riverside Parks & Recreation Department is canceling all programs, closing all facilities, athletic fields, and playgrounds through Tuesday, April 7, 2020.
Riverside Parks & Recreation Department programs, activities, and public access will be suspended at the Historic Water Tower.
Public Access to facilities, athletic fields, playgrounds, and programs is tentatively scheduled to resume on Wednesday, April 8th.
During this closure, full time staff will be available to the public via email and phone during normal business hours. Extra measures are being taken during the closure to do deep cleaning.
Spring Athletic Leagues are currently postponed, more information will be coming.
We appreciate your understanding and support during this challenging and unprecedented time.
March 20 Update from Governor J.B. Pritzker
Governor Pritzker has issued an Executive Order requiring all residents to stay at home during this public health emergency and observe social distancing guidelines when out in public for essential activities. Read the Executive Order here. This Executive Order will go into effect at 5:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 21 and will remain in effect until Tuesday, April 7, 2020.
Please note that Riverside Foods will remain open daily but will close at 6:00 p.m. Monday - Friday to allow additional time for enhanced sanitation. Saturday hours are 7:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Sunday hours are 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Additionally, Tuesdays and Thursdays from 7:30 - 8:30 a.m. will be reserved for elderly and immunocompromised shoppers. Please visit the Economic Development Commission Facebook page for details regarding Riverside businesses.
March 19 Update from Finance Director Johns
Resident Assistance Available
- Riverside Township Food Pantry 708-442-4400
Village of Riverside Water Billing
- No Water Shut Offs until May 1, 2020
- No additional late fees assessed as of March 17, 2020 until May 1, 2020
- Please contact Donna Lamich for payment plan options
- Suspending Disconnect
- Waiving new late payment charges through May 1, 2020
- Payment plan options available at ComEd.com/DPA
- Suspending Service Disconnects for non payment through May 1, 2020
- Assistance Programs Available at https://www.nicorgas.com/residential/billingandpaymentoptions/energy-assistance-programs.html
- Payment plan options available at 630-261-0400
- Riverside Township 708-442-4400
March 19 Update from Riverside TV
Live streams of the Village Board of Trustees meeting audio will be available on Riverside TV starting at 7:00 p.m. this evening.
In addition, the meeting audio will be available on TV on Comcast Xfinity Channel 6 in Riverside and on AT&T U-Verse channel 99-Riverside throughout the State of Illinois.
March 19 Update from Community Development Director Abt
SHOP LOCAL: SUPPORT RIVERSIDE BUSINESSES
During this difficult time, the Village of Riverside asks that our residents continue to support our small restaurant and business owners, many of which still have pickup, delivery or other service accommodations. The Village is compiling a list of businesses and the services/options they have available and we will be updating that list regularly. Please visit our Shop Local: Support Riverside Businesses page.
For those businesses that cannot offer carry-out/delivery or online services, we ask our residents to consider purchasing gift cards or gift certificates from our local businesses and utilizing them when restrictions on social distancing and other closures lift.
If you are a Riverside business owner, please contact the Community Development Director at firstname.lastname@example.org or (708) 447-1241 to add your business’s information to the list.
March 18 Update from Community Development Director Abt
These are uncertain times for our business community and we know you have questions. We do not have all the answers but we want to provide you as much information as we can. Here is a resource list for small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
March 18 Update from Police Chief Weitzel
The Police Adjudication hearing and Building Dept hearing scheduled for Thursday, March 26, 2020 has been cancelled. All cases have been rescheduled to Thursday, April 23, 2020 with the Building Dept hearing starting at 5:30 p.m. and the Police adjudication hearing starting at 6:00 p.m.
Ticket fines will not show an increase for the month of March due to this cancellation. If more information is needed, please email your questions/concerns to email@example.com.
Thank you for your cooperation in this matter.
Chief of Police
March 17 Update from Village Administration
Village Offices will be closed to the public beginning Wednesday, March 18. It is the Village’s highest priority to maintain services to its residents. Village Staff will continue to work on site to continue offering all essential services.
- Village services will continue. Residents and businesses may continue with Village business online, by phone, or by email. To pay a bill online, please visit the payment page of the Village website. Payments or other correspondence may also be placed in the silver drop-box in front of the Riverside Township Hall. The Village’s phone number is 708-447-2700.
- Building Permit Applications and Contractor’s License Applications can be found here. To apply for a permit or license, please email the application and required documentation to Will Bouman. Permit and contractor’s license applications can be placed in the silver drop-box in front of the Riverside Township Hall.
- Residents may continue to call, email, and use Riverside Responds.
- The Village Board will conduct its regularly scheduled meeting on Thursday, March 19, 2020, at 7:00 p.m. by phone only and the meeting will be closed to the public. To listen in, please view the livestream offered at the Riverside TV website. Public comment may be submitted to Village Clerk Cathy Haley by email or by leaving comments in the lockbox in front of the Township Hall.
- Please note that an item has been added to the Village Board Agenda, to update Riverside’s Declaration of Emergency ordinance. This is not a declaration of emergency; however, the Village Board would like to remain proactive by updating the current local code. Should the Village issue a Declaration of Emergency in the future, this would be announced publicly, on social media and on the village website. In the event that future Village Board meetings were to be cancelled, if enacted, the Emergency Declaration would allow the Village to maintain certain administrative functions including the payments of bills and other routine requirements.
- All non-mandated public meetings will be cancelled or/rescheduled.
- Police and Fire personnel continue to exercise extreme caution and will be notified of individuals experiencing respiratory issues prior to arrival in order to take additional precautions.
- Public Works will continue to ensure safe and high-quality drinking water to customers and reminds residents to NOT flush wipes.
March 17 Update from Police Chief Weitzel
The Riverside Police Department is committed to serving our residents and visitors. In light of the rapidly evolving situation as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), the Police Department will be making some modifications to the services we provide. These modifications are for the safety of our employees and the citizens we serve. Our goal is to try to prevent or contain the spread of COVID-19, especially to those in the high risk category. Please read the attached update for complete information on the new Police Protocols.
March 16 Update from Fire Chief Buckley
As the Village of Riverside continues to monitor the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, I would like to update residents regarding the preparation the Village has taken to minimize the spread of this virus. It is the intention of the Village to sustain all of our services throughout this event. Please read the attached update for more information regarding protocols for first responders.
March 16 Update from Village Manager Frances
Beginning Monday, March 16, the Parks & Recreation Department and Public Works Department will be closed to the public. Essential village services will continue as normal. The Village office will remain open for business; however, residents are asked to please use the convenient online or phone payment systems to transact village business. Information on Payment Options is available here.
The Village Board meeting on Thursday, March 19 will continue as scheduled and residents are encouraged to watch from home on Comcast Xfinity Channel 6 and AT&T U-Verse Channel 99. The meeting will also be streamed live on Riverside TV.
As this situation evolves, the Village will continue to provide updates and post additional resources on the Village website. We ask that you do your part to keep the community safe and prevent the spread of illness. Please contact the Illinois Department of Public Health with specific questions about Coronavirus (COVID-19) by calling (800) 889-3931 or email DPH.SICK@ILLINOIS.gov.
March 15 Update from Village President Sells
Dear Fellow Riversiders,
I want to thank everyone for making prudent decisions and necessary sacrifices during this time of national emergency. All of us are concerned for our families, our friends, our neighbors, and our local businesses. While we take the steps of social distancing, practicing proper hygiene, and contacting your doctor for guidance if ill, it is also important to recognize that the coronavirus challenge is also an opportunity. Even as we feel isolated by the threat of infection, we are also reminded that we are all mutually dependent on one another. This is our opportunity to balance fear with the comfort of community, and to remember that we have endured darker times. The sun always rises again. Be careful, be reasonable, and be loving. Follow the science and listen to your doctors and trusted experts. Your village is being extremely proactive about this threat -- our public safety leaders are staying fully informed on both the spread of the virus and the current best practices to limit its spread. As a community and as a nation we will do what we have always done -- we will stand together in the face of adversity, guarded and encouraged by our better angels, and resolute in our common goal to emerge stronger and more united as a people. If you have questions or concerns about the village’s preparations and response as we move forward please don’t hesitate to contact me, Village Manager Jessica Frances, or Fire Chief Matt Buckley.
March 13 Update from Fire Chief Buckley
The Village of Riverside continues to receive updates from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Illinois Department of Public Health, Governor Pritzker’s Office and Cook County Department of Public Health. The health and safety of our residents are paramount.
Please note that polling places will be open on Tuesday, however, early voting is recommended. Residents may early vote at Berwyn City Hall, Brookfield Village Hall or Stickney-Forestview Public Library. Please visit the Cook County Clerk’s website for complete details.
Locally, the Village is working to ensure Village services are uninterrupted; however, we ask residents that, when possible, please conduct Village business by phone or online via: payment portal, email and Riverside Responds. We ask our residents to do the following to reduce and contain the spread of COVID-19 (novel coronavirus):
- Reduce social interaction; the purpose of cancelling school and special events is to reduce social interaction for a period of time.
- Events should be cancelled or postponed until after May 1st.
- If you have the flu, contact your physician. The Emergency Department resources are being taxed and we want to ensure resources are available for those that are most critical or are part of a vulnerable population.
- Do not engage in activities that would promote the spread of the virus. It is vital to eliminate contamination.
- Please continue your preventative methods such as washing hands properly, use of disinfectant and antibacterial gel as well as cleaning of frequently touched objects and surfaces.
Safety measures were implemented to protect Public Safety personnel and Village staff to ensure delivery of Village services. Please note that in the future, some of the Village offices may need to close to visitors; however, rest assured that the Village will continue to deliver the services that you rely upon. Please note that the volume of ambulance calls within the Village has increased. If possible, please contact your physician if you have the flu or believe you need to be tested, before your condition worsens. The Village wants to ensure the availability of the ambulance and first responders for the most critical patients.
The key to containment of COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) is reducing social interaction. We ask for your patience during this time as Village resources will be strained and over-extended.
Thank you for your help. We appreciate the concerned and caring community that is Riverside. If you have any questions, please contact Fire Chief Matt Buckley at 708-447-2123 x306 or email Chief Buckley.
March 4 Coronavirus Update from Village President Sells
With confirmed cases of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) now reported in Cook County, it is important for all of us to be proactive in defending against the spread of this illness. That means implementing practices to avoid getting sick and, if you do get sick, to avoid infecting others.
The best defenses are practicing good hygiene and social distancing. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or, if soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands. Avoid close contact with people who are sick. Stay home if you are sick (except to seek medical care). Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
Everyone should practice the above preventative measures. Also take time to review emergency operations plans, including identification of essential business functions, teleworking, and flexible sick leave policies.
Travelers should be alert to changing conditions. Before traveling, check travel health notices at https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices. If you are returning home from countries with Travel Alert Levels 2 or 3 take the appropriate measures. You can find that and other valuable information at the City of Chicago’s website at https://www.chicago.gov/coronavirus.
Riverside’s Police and Fire Departments are coordinating with surrounding communities to provide emergency services in a safe and professional manner. Help them out – if a responder asks you to wear a mask or use hand sanitizer please do so. They are only trying to keep you, and themselves, healthy. Together we can help manage the effects of COVID-19 on our community.