Mount Vernon, Ill. mayor not stopping businesses from opening up

MT VERNON PUSH TO OPEN

MOUNT VERNON, Ill. (KFVS) - Many cities across the world are waiting to reopen.

Some Businesses in southern Illinois may be doing so without the governor’s permission.

“We’re not going to stop any of them, we’re not going to be in their way, that’s a fight," Mount Vernon Mayor John Lewis said. "That’ll be a fight between the state of Illinois, health department and the courts.”

That’s one tough match he won’t be fighting.

Lewis and the City of Mount Vernon, like others across Illinois, have taken a hit financially from the crisis.

“I don’t think any city in the state of Illinois is holding up very well. We’re $1.3 million projected and those were optimistic projections in the hole and that was before Governor Pritzker extended it," he said.

Lewis said if a business wants to open, he won’t even begin to try and stop them.

He understands people need to pay bills and put food on the table for their families.

Many patrons among southern Illinois also believe small businesses should open.

“I feel like everyone should be open because people got to pay bills it’s only a matter of time before the stimulus check runs out," said Merl Middleton

Chelsea Yeager agreed.

“As long as people are keeping their social distancing and wearing PPE, I think it’s safe to reopen,” she said.

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