CHAMPAIGN – State Senator Scott Bennett (D-Champaign) is calling on Gov. JB Pritzker to take additional steps to mend the state’s failed system for unemployment compensation, which has prevented Illinoisans from receiving any help after losing their jobs in March.

For eight weeks, Illinoisans trying to file for unemployment benefits have jammed the phone lines of the state’s employment services department. Many have been on hold for hours, while others have not been able to make it that far. As weeks turn into months, frustrations are boiling over among laid-off and furloughed workers who have been unable to cut through the system to obtain benefits.

“Even with a new system in place, many people still cannot get through to IDES over the phone or online, and some have not received any payment at all,” Bennett said. “We cannot ask people to stay home if they aren’t receiving the necessary means to put food on the table.”

Bennett has also argued that Champaign and Vermilion counties' current health statistics are under control and the Central Region of the Restore Illinois plan is ready to move to Phase 3, which would allow for a safe opening of manufacturers, retail store, barbershops and salons.

Because of the work from residents to help flatten the curve and reduce the spread, Champaign and Vermilion counties have been able to maintain a steady and declining number of new cases of COVID-19. As of Wednesday, Champaign County had 435 positive cases of COVID-19 and 7 deaths, while Vermilion County had 30 positive cases and 1 death.

“Moving forward, I am focused on preparing Illinois communities to safely reopen,” Bennett said. “Until the unemployment system can handle the needs of Illinoisans in an adequate way, I will work toward getting people back to work in a safe and responsible manner to restore livelihoods.”


CHAMPAIGN – A webinar to provide information on grants, loans, and other resources for Asian American small businesses, hosted by representatives from the federal, state, county, and municipal governments will take place Wednesday, May 20.

State Senator Scott Bennett (D-Champaign), a member of the Illinois Asian American Legislative Caucus, will join the Asian American Caucus, the Asian American Executive Network and the Asian American Coalition of Chicago at 11 a.m. to answer questions and share their experiences navigating this pandemic.

“Our small businesses are facing an unprecedented economic disruption due to the coronavirus outbreak,” Bennett said. “Join this free online webinar Wednesday to learn more about programs that can provide vital economic support to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue during this crisis.”

To RSVP and to receive the webinar link, please visit https://forms.gle/cmfdnUbQrM8BTw466.

For questions or additional information, Bennett urges residents to contact his office at 217-355-5252 or visit SenatorBennett.com.

aurora drivethrough 042220CHAMPAIGN – State Senator Scott Bennett (D-Champaign) reported Monday a new drive-thru testing site will open in Champaign Tuesday, May 19 to help individuals with COVID-19 symptoms and employees who support critical services. 
“This virus knows no boundaries,” Bennett said. “Broad testing for people with both COVID symptoms and those without is an important step to stem the spread of this illness and eventually overcome this pandemic.” 
The new site will be located in the parking lot of Market Place Shopping Center at 2000 N. Neil Street and will offer testing services seven days a week from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m., or while daily supplies last.
All individuals with symptoms are encouraged to seek testing at these Community Based Testing Sites. Priority is given to first responders, health care workers, seniors, those with underlying conditions or with mild illness in areas with a high number of COVID-19 cases. 

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sos facility 051520TILTON - Beginning Tuesday, May 19, the Tilton Department of Motor Vehicles will offer a drive-through service to assist customers with vehicle registration sticker transactions, State Senator Scott Bennett (D-Champaign) announced Friday.

“Since COVID-19 hit, the secretary of state’s office has encouraged residents to utilize their online services,” Bennett said. “By offering limited services at select DMVs, we are starting to see the progression forward, while still prioritizing customers and workers safety.”

Tilton was one of seven facilities selected to open due to the configuration of the building which allows for drive-through transactions. All employees will wear face masks and customers are encouraged to do the same.

The hours of operation will be Tuesday 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Wednesday through Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday 7:30 a.m. to noon.

Bennett continues to urge the public to renew their vehicle registration stickers online at www.cyberdriveillinois.com for those customers who able. All expiration dates for driver’s licenses, ID cards and vehicle registrations have been extended at least 90 days after Driver Services facilities reopen.

Bennett also reminded residents the federal government extended the REAL ID deadline by one year. The deadline is now October 1, 2021.


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Office Info

Champaign Office:
45 E. University Suite 206
Champaign, IL 61820
P: (217) 355-5252

Danville Office:
201 N. Vermilion St. Suite 323
Danville, IL 61832
P: (217) 442-5252

Springfield Office:
311C State House
Springfield, IL 62706
P: (217) 782-2507