Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s 27th disaster declaration regarding COVID-19 is set to end. In many respects, life will go back to normal. This includes in-person public meetings.

But wait. Even as the pandemic winds down, towns and cities across the state are making a push in the state legislature to try to make their meetings too Zoom-friendly.

Public squares, dating to ancient Greece, were areas where dialogue, protest and decisions took place on behalf of residents of their cities. The idea of heading to one location where people can see their elected officials, air their displeasure and even advocate for change is at the heart of any democracy. It should not be disrupted.

In the emerging post-pandemic context, here’s what that means.

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Bryan is a Public Policy & Government Affairs Professional with many years experience advocating for change by way of regulation and the legislative process. Born and raised on Long Island, Bryan spent many years in the private sector. He taught a wide range of political science courses as an Adjunct Professor in New York City, and has volunteered and advocated for nonprofits to both local and federal officials. In 2020, Bryan helped secure funding for the largest census appropriation in Illinois history; he has also authored and passed legislation signed into law by Gov. JB Pritzker to help relieve nonprofits with a large tax burden effecting thousands of employees. During the pandemic, Bryan vehemently advocated to the federal government to ensure funding opportunities for the states larger nonprofits who help the most vulnerable in society. Currently, Bryan is an Adjunct Professor at Aurora University, lecturing courses in the Dunham School of Business and Public Policy. He is also the Director of Policy for the Better Government Association, the states oldest watchdog and civic advocate. Bryan holds both a bachelor’s and master’s in political science, from Wesley College and Long Island University, respectively.