It is Friday, so who’s ready for the weekend? We have a confirmed Democratic Presidential Nominee after Joe Biden accepted last night. The elections are just a short time away realistically. With that said, read below for the latest on the Post Office saga and some other info as we wrap up another week.
County on Warning
Will County is at the orange level, or the warning level that could mean similar restrictions similar to the region east of St. Louis. Unfortunately, numbers are not moving in the right direction. As of today, the County is a warning levels for both the number of deaths and the number of new cases per 100,000 people. Our positivity rate sits at 7.1% and cases per 100,000 have raised from 71 to 92 in a weeks’ time. Hopefully, next week the trend will reverse and we will avoid restrictions on gatherings and the bar/restaurant industry. Over 2,000 cases were reported today statewide and a total of 20 counties are on the warning list.
Latest from the USPS
Postmaster General Louis DeJoy said today that ensuring mail-in ballots are delivered during elections this year is his number one priority. “As we head in the election season, I want to assure this committee and the American public that the Postal Service is fully capable and committed to delivering the nation’s election mail securely and on time,” DeJoy testified during a Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing on the Postal Service.
In longer prepared remarks, DeJoy described recent concerns that new reforms to the Postal Service could delay or impede the delivery of ballots as a “false narrative” but vowed to not implement two major reforms until after Election Day in order to uphold the Postal Service’s “valued reputation as a source of reliability and strength for the American people.”
With more financial concerns facing the Postal Service due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, DeJoy used his testimony to beg Congress to appropriate more funds for the agency, an issue that has been a sticking point between Democrats and Republicans during coronavirus relief bill negotiations.
Eviction Moratorium to be Extended Again
Governor Pritzker will be extending the state’s moratorium on evictions for another 30 days after the current executive order expires tomorrow, the 22nd. The announcement came as activists staged a rally at Daley Plaza, demanding officials lift the ban on rent control. They are grateful the moratorium is extended, but want long-term solutions to address housing insecurity.
W2 & “Gig” Worker Projections
The Internal Revenue Service projects that lower levels of employment in the U.S. could persist for years, showcasing the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic.
The IRS forecasts there will be about 229.4 million employee-classified jobs in 2021 which is about 37.2 million fewer than it had estimated last year, before the virus hit, according to updated data released Thursday. The statistics are an estimate how many of the W-2 tax forms that are used to track employee wages and withholding the agency will receive.
Lower rates of W-2 filings are seen persisting through at least 2027, with about 15.9 million fewer forms filed that year compared with prior estimates. That is the last year for which the agency has published figures comparing assumptions prior to the pandemic and incorporating the virus’s effects.
There’s one category that is expected to rise: The IRS sees about 1.6 million more tax forms for gig workers next year compared with pre-pandemic estimates.
That boost likely reflects assumptions with the shift to ‘work from home,’ which may be gig workers, or may just be that businesses are more willing to outsource work or have the status of their workers be independent contractors now that they work from home. What do you see happening with your business in the future? Have you forecasted changes due to the current trends?
Supporting Employee Mental Health
Mental illness has always been a problem in the workforce. During today’s crazy times, it is certainly no different. It can seem invisible, but 1 in 5 people experience a diagnosable mental illness each year. Imagine 1 in 5 of your workers coping with mental illness, and the cost to your business is staggering.
What can you do to help?
- Validate their feelings
- Brainstorm a plan for self-care
- Review their personal support system
- Connect them with a resource
- Continue to check in with them
Attached is a guide that reviews how mental illness is costing your employees and your business, and what you can do about it.
Finally, here are the details about an extremely informational session that will serve as our next Virtual Conference on Friday, August 28 at 11 AM. “Making the Most of your Membership Profile”
Please join the Joliet Chamber for a free, interactive virtual conference to best utilize your membership listing on the Chamber website including:
- How to Make Your Directory Page Pop by updating company information, adding images and video, and displaying staff.
- Promote Your Business by adding Hot Deals, Member to Member Deals, Job Postings, and Events.
- Connect with Other Members – share your stories via the Community Feed.
In preparation for the webinar, please make sure you know your Joliet Chamber Membership log-in information. If you have not yet set-up a log-in and password, please contact the Chamber office by calling (815) 727-5371 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please use the link below to register:
Joliet Region Chamber of Commerce & Industry Staff and Board of Directors
Vice President – Government Affairs
Joliet Region Chamber of Commerce & Industry