Welcome

Welcome to my legislative website. I am proud to serve as the State Senator from Illinois’ 48th District. I hope you’ll find this site a useful resource in keeping up-to-date with what’s happening in our district and in Springfield. Please contact any of my offices with questions or ways I can better serve you.

It is my honor to represent you in Springfield.

Sincerely,
ManarSig
State Senator Andy Manar
48th Legislative District

ManarBUNKER HILL - Governor Pritzker on Wednesday announced two new emergency assistance programs geared toward providing immediate capital to small businesses in rural and downstate communities.

“Small businesses are the lifeblood of downstate communities,” Manar said. “Rather than massive corporate investments, the rural way of life is driven by the ability of family-owned businesses to support each other. I applaud Governor Pritzker for recognizing rural downstate business owners' unique needs and taking bold action to help them protect their livelihoods and endure the challenges and uncertainty posed by COVID-19.”

The Illinois Small Business Emergency Loan Fund, unveiled by Pritzker on Wednesday, is a $60 million program that will support low-interest loans of up to $50,000 for small businesses in every industry outside of Chicago.

Businesses with fewer than 50 employees and less than $3 million in revenue in 2019 will be eligible to apply. Successful applicants will owe nothing for six months and will then begin making fixed payments at 3% interest for the remainder of a five-year loan term.

Applications will be available on the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity’s website by Friday, March 27.

Pritzker also announced the Downstate Small Business Stabilization Program, a $20 million grant program for small businesses in suburban and rural counties across Illinois.

These grants will offer businesses of up to 50 employees the opportunity to partner with their local governments to obtain grants of up to $25,000 in working capital. The program redeploys Community Development Block Grant funds to support local small businesses.

Only communities qualified to receive CDBG funds are eligible for the Downstate Small Business Stabilization Program. Small businesses located in urban counties and metropolitan centers, including Madison County and the City of Springfield, are ineligible for the program.​

Applications will be available on DCEO’s website by Friday, March 27. The grants will be offered on a rolling basis.

Additionally, a new Hospitality Emergency Grant Program will spend $14 million in grants to help small hospitality businesses, in all areas of the state, make ends meet. It will provide up to $25,000 to eligible bars and restaurants and up to $50,000 for eligible hotels. Eligibility information and the application can be found here.

Category: Uncategorised

COVID 19 update

Small business relief

  • Sales tax deferment: To help alleviate some of the unprecedented challenges facing bars and restaurants due to COVID-19, Gov. Pritzker has directed the Department of Revenue to defer sales tax payments for more than 24,000 small- and medium-sized bars and restaurants — accounting for nearly 80% of all such entities statewide. For more information, please view IDOR's informational bulletin available at tax.illinois.gov.
  • Small business disaster loans: Gov. Pritzker announced that the U.S. Small Business Administration has approved the state's eligibility for disaster assistance loans for small businesses facing financial hardship in all 102 counties due to COVID-19. Eligible businesses can apply for up to $2 million in low-interest loans here.
  • Counseling for small businesses: Advisors at Illinois Small Business Development Centers across the state are available to assist businesses with preparedness planning and accessing disaster loans approved for small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 Pandemic. You can find the location and contact information of your nearest SBDC here.

Health care and pharmacy support

  • Telemedicine expansion: Through emergency rules imposed by the Pritzker administration, the state has significantly relaxed rules around telemedicine for both Medicaid and private insurers, allowing more providers to get reimbursed for these services that allow patients more flexibility and safety.
  • Health care access for families: The State of Illinois has filed a waiver with the federal government to loosen restrictions on Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP). The Pritzker administration is seeking to increase access to telehealth and the number of health care providers that can screen patients, allow 90-day prescription supplies without prior authorization and early refills, as well as several other items that will increase flexibility and provide additional resources.
  • Bolstering rural pharmacies: To protect the vital role of rural pharmacies during this crisis, the state is expediting payments under the Critical Access Pharmacy (CAP) Program, which supports small, independently owned pharmacies in rural counties and medically underserved areas of the state.

Food Security

  • Food assistance for children and families: The Department of Human Services has filed a federal waiver to ease eligibility requirements for food assistance programs like SNAP and WIC, which cover 1.8 million Illinoisans and 174,000 pregnant women and parents of young children respectively.
  • Free meals for students: The Illinois State Board of Education is working to provide meals every day to all students, no questions asked. Grab-and-go meals are available statewide for students who need them, and some schools are even offering delivery. Contact your child’s school district for more information.
  • Grocery store hours for seniors: Gov. Pritzker announced yesterday that a growing coalition of grocery stores statewide will set aside one or more hours of operation for older residents to shop, before stores open to the general public. Contact your prefered store to see if they are participating.
Category: Uncategorised

SPRINGFIELD - On Friday, March 20, Illinois Governor Pritzker issued Executive Order 2020-10 requiring all Illinoisans to stay in their homes to prevent the further spread of COVID-19. The order prohibits things like visiting the homes of friends and holding gatherings of any size and closes all nonessential establishments, including most retail, recreation and entertainment businesses. It does NOT prohibit essential activities like going to the grocery store, receiving medical care, or taking your pet for a walk. For more information on what this order means for you, please see the FAQs below.

When does the order take effect?

The order will take effect Saturday, March 21st at 5pm CST.

Where does the Stay at Home order apply?

The Governor’s executive order includes the entire state. Unless you work for an essential business or are doing an essential activity, you should stay home. Work from home is permitted and encouraged where possible.

Is this mandatory or just guidance?

This order is mandatory. To help prevent the further spread of COVID-19 in Illinois and protect our friends, neighbors, and vulnerable populations, please stay home.

How will this order be enforced?

Staying home is critical to reducing the spread of COVID-19 in your community. The Illinois State Police will work with local law enforcement to enforce this order but adhering to the order will save lives and it is the responsibility of every Illinoisan to do their part.

Will the Illinois National Guard be enforcing this order?

No. The Illinois National Guard will be supporting logistics, transportation, and medical response efforts. The Guard will not be enforcing this order. I work in an essential service.

How will the police know I’m allowed to be outside my house?

Law enforcement officials will not stop residents who are on their way to or from work or who are out for necessities like going to the pharmacy or getting groceries, or just taking a walk. People gathering in groups over 10 may be asked to social distance or go home. Illinoisans should abstain from all nonessential activities. Adhering to the order will save lives and it is the responsibility of every Illinoisan to do their part.

Will grocery stores be open?

Yes, essential services will still be operational including, but not limited to:

  • Grocery stores
  • Gas stations
  • Pharmacies
  • Police stations
  • Fire stations
  • Hospitals, clinics and healthcare operations
  • Garbage/sanitation
  • Public transportation
  • Public benefits (i.e. SNAP, Medicaid) hotlines

A full list can be found in the executive order at coronavirus.illinois.gov.

How can I get medical care if I need it?

If you are feeling sick, call your doctor, a nurse hotline, any telehealth hotline set up specifically for COVID-19 (check with your insurance company) or an urgent care center.If you are experiencing symptoms or are currently in isolation, you should stay at home and follow the guidelines provided by your physician. Do not go to an emergency room unless necessary. Nonessential medical care like eye exams and teeth-cleaning should be postponed. When possible, healthcare visits should be done remotely. Contact your healthcare provider to see what tele-health services they provide.

What is the guidance for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities?

State Operated Developmental Centers, Intermediate Care Facilities for Individuals with Developmental Disabilities and Community Integrated Living Arrangements will continue to provide care. All in-home direct care staff are considered essential staff and should continue to support individuals in the home setting. If you have any specific questions about your support and services, please reach out to your provider or Individual Service Coordination (ISC) Agency. To receive updated information on DDD services, please sign up for our email database, or to update your contact and service information, please visit www.DDD.Illinois.gov.

What if I still have to go to work?

Unless your work is an essential function (i.e. healthcare provider, grocery store clerk, first responder), you should stay home. If you have been designated essential by your employer, you should continue to go to work and practice social distancing. If you are experiencing symptoms or are currently in isolation, you should stay at home and follow the guidelines provided by your physician.

What if I think my business should be closed but I’m still being asked to operate?

Essential businesses will remain open during the Stay at Home order to provide services that are vital to the lives of Illinoisans. Those businesses include, but are not limited to, pharmacies, certain government offices, day care centers that provide care for the children of essential employees, and restaurants providing take-out meals. If you work for an essential business, you should continue to practice social distancing and should stay at home outside of work hours. If you believe your business is nonessential but are still being asked to show up to work, you may discuss with your employer.

Can I order food/groceries?

Yes, grocery delivery will be available as well as meal-delivery, drive through, and take-out options.

A certain service is essential for me, but the Governor didn’t include it, what do I do?

The Stay at Home order was issued to protect the health, safety and well-being of Illinoisans. While some businesses like fitness centers and salons will be closed, essential services will always be available.

Will public transportation and ridesharing be available?

Public transportation and ridesharing should be used for essential travel only. When possible, walk or drive yourself.

Will roads in Illinois be closed?

No, the roads will not be closed in Illinois. You should only travel if it is essential to your work or health.

Can I take a flight out of state?

Planes and any other form of travel should only be used for essential purposes.

What if my home is not a safe environment?

If it is not safe for you to remain home, you are able and urged to find another safe place to stay during this order. Please reach out so we can help. You may call the domestic violence hotline at 1-877-863- 6338 or contact your local law enforcement.

What about homeless people who can’t stay at home?

The administration wants to protect the health and safety of all Illinoisans, regardless of where they live. State agencies are partnering with community organizations to provide funding and resources to ensure our homeless population has safe shelter.

Can I visit friends and family?

For your safety, as well as the safety of those in your community, you should remain at home to help fight the spread of COVID-19. You may visit family members or friends who need medical or other essential assistance, such as ensuring an adequate supply of food.

What about my pet?

You are allowed to walk your dog and seek medical care for your pet should they require it. Be sure to practice social distancing while out on walks, maintaining at least 6 feet from other neighbors and their pets.

Does the Stay at Home order mean I can’t take my kids to the park?

State parks will be closed during the Stay at Home order. Families will still be able to go outside, including to local parks and outdoor spaces that remain open, and take a walk, run, or bike ride but should continue to practice social distancing by remaining 6 feet away from other people. Playgrounds are closed because they pose a high risk of increasing transmission.

What is the difference between the Stay at Home order and social distancing?

Social distancing is an important first step in preventing the spread of a disease like COVID-19 that allows people to go about their daily activities while taking extra health and safety precautions. The Stay at Home order requires people to remain in their homes unless they have an essential job or are doing an essential task like going to the grocery store or walking a pet. 

Can I leave home to exercise?

Yes. Outdoor exercise like running or taking a walk is perfectly acceptable; however, exercise gyms, fitness centers and associated facilities will be closed to reduce the spread of coronavirus. While exercising outside, you should still practice social distancing by running or walking at least six feet away from other people.

Can I pick up meals being provided by my child’s school?

Yes. Schools that provide free food services to students will continue on a pick-up and take-home basis.

Can I go out to do laundry?

Yes. Laundromats, dry cleaners and laundry service providers are considered essential businesses that will remain open.

Can I take my child to day care?

If you are considered an essential worker under the Order, you can take your child to a day care that is licensed on an emergency basis for the purpose of childcare for essential workers. Licensed day care homes for up to 12 children will be closed but may reopen as an unlicensed day care home for up to 6 children. 

Category: Uncategorised

Decatur Town Hall PNG

DECATUR – Decatur-area residents concerned about rising prescription drug prices will have an opportunity to share their stories and find out what State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) is doing to lower drug costs at a Decatur Town Hall on Prescription Drug Prices on Thursday, March 12.

“Our goal is to help people understand exactly why prescription drug prices are so high and hear the concerns of families and individuals who are bearing the brunt of an industry plagued by profiteering,” Manar said. “Most importantly, we want people to know that we can deliver change to this deeply flawed industry by raising our collective voice and demanding transparency and accountability.”

Last week, Manar unveiled legislation to establish a Prescription Drug Affordability Board, which would review data on drug prices and set new price limits on state-regulated plans. The bill is part of a broad package aimed at lowering the cost of prescription drugs.

The event is co-sponsored by the Decatur NAACP Branch, Decatur-Macon County Senior Center, AARP Illinois, Protect Our Care Illinois, and AFSCME Council 31.

For questions or additional information, Manar urges residents to contact his office at 217-782-0228.

What: Decatur Town Hall on Rx Drug Prices
Who: Senator Andy Manar, advocates from Protect Our Care Illinois
When: Thursday, Mar. 12 6:00 p.m.
Where: Decatur Macon County Senior Center, located at 1430 N. 22nd St. Decatur, IL

Category: Uncategorised

COVID19 Updates

Insulin Costs in IL

School Funding Reform

 

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Contact Me

Springfield Office:
119A Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
Phone: (217) 782-0228

Decatur Office:
Macon County Office Building
141 S. Main St., Suite 502
Decatur, IL 62523
Phone: (217) 429-8110

Bunker Hill Office:
115 N. Washington, P.O. Box 636
Bunker Hill, IL 62014
Phone: (618) 585-4848