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The Joint Committee on Administrative Rules, or J-CAR, did not block a new mask mandate issued last week by the Illinois governor. The current emergency rule differs slightly from the previous rule, by allowing businesses to provide written notice of enforcement to patrons not wearing a mask, among other changes. The motion to suspend didn’t get the eight votes needed on Tuesday to suspend the emergency order.
Republican state Sen. Paul Schimpf of Waterloo, and a JCAR member, motioned to suspend the rule saying there’s been ample time for the legislature to pass a law requiring masks if it was necessary. Anne Spillane, the governor’s general counsel, said they didn’t want the legislature to make anything permanent as the COVID-19 pandemic remains fluid. Schimpf said if the state wants to impose this like seat belt laws, lawmakers have to pass a bill. The emergency rule remains in effect until June, until the governor repeals the rule, or J-CAR approves any possible future motion to suspend.