The mayor of south suburban Orland Park posted a video to social media on Thursday speaking out against part of Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s phased plan to reopen Illinois.
In the video, Mayor Keith Pekau said he believes the governor’s plan to reopen the state is unreasonable and argued businesses in Orland Park can’t wait much longer.
“The governor’s plan would not allow restaurants to reopen until at least June 26,” Pekau said in the video that has just over 100 views on YouTube. “Frankly most of our small, family owned restaurants will not survive that long.”
Pekau added that he’s asked Pritzker to speed up his plan while questioning it’s legality.
“We’ve encouraged people to follow the governor’s recommendations, but we are not enforcing those recommendations because legally we don’t think we have the ability to enforce those recommendations and the governor clearly does not have the legal ability,” Pekau said.
When asked about the challenge today at his daily coronavirus press briefing, Pritzker seemingly acknowledged the potential legal conflict.
“I have discouraged local law enforcement from arresting people. I have not discouraged them from reminding them what their obligations are to each other,” Pritzker said.
Pritzker also added that he believes Orland Park Mall won’t open for several months despite the mall’s plans to reopen on May 31, but Pekau said measures would be in place for the mall to open safely.
“They don’t expect a big rush of people, but they have procedures that I think that will be helpful to keep the mall safe,” Pekau said.