Vaccine Variations

Apr 15, 2021

If you get your Covid vaccine at the Rock Island County mass vaccination clinic in Milan, through May 20, there will be something special that’s literally music to your ears.

Taking a cue from famous cellist Yo-Yo Ma’s recent impromptu performance during his Covid vaccine observation period, the Rock Island County Health Department and the Quad City Symphony Orchestra are partnering to bring live music to the mass vaccination site at Camden Centre in Milan.

Rock Island School District

With help from Mediacom, students in the Rock Island schools now have better access to the internet. The company has made its equipment available so there are many more hot spots available throughout the district.

Troy Bevans, I-T Director for the district, says when the pandemic began, students could use all the schools as "homework hot spots" for internet access, and a few businesses volunteered to help. But that left a lot of areas without coverage.

Businesses hurt by the pandemic can get some help from the city of Moline. It's accepting applications for another round of the Small Business Relief Loan Program.

Community Development Program Manager K. J. Whitley says the forgivable loans are for businesses with two to 50 employees. In the previous round, the city handed out 5,000 dollars each to nine businesses.

"We were able to help nine businesses, many of them were restaurants or bars but we did have some small retail businesses that we were able to help too. "

Unemployment rose in the Quad Cities during February to 6.1 per cent, from 4.1 per cent a year ago.

Tom Austin from the Illinois Department of Employment Security, says the number of people considered unemployed went up while the number of people working went down.

"Those declines are what we would expect when we look at the pandemic, especially affecting such industries as leisure and hospitality, as well as retail trade."

Other job losses occurred in government, manufacturing, and professional and business services.

Property owners in Scott County may be surprised later this month when they receive new assessment notices. Despite the pandemic, property values have gone up.

County Assessor Tom McManus says he thought values might go down because of the slowdown in the local and national economies. Instead, they've gone up with an average increase for residential property in Scott County of 8.5 per cent, and 6.5 per cent for commercial and industrial property.

QC Restaurant Week 2021

Mar 22, 2021
Visit Quad Cities

One of the hardest hit sectors of the economy during the pandemic has been restaurants. And that's why Visit Quad Cities says this year's QC Restaurant Week, starting Monday, is more important than ever.

President and CEO Dave Herrell says this is a critical part of the local economy.

"Whether you're comfortable dining in or you're more comfortable doing a takeout option or delivery, it's all about how we can rally behind the restaurant community and support them."

Fifty restaurants are participating, with promotions and special offers.

Dr. Kenneth Kriz

The Quad Cities economy started to recover during the final months of last year. That's according to a study done for the Chamber of Commerce by Doctor Kenneth Kriz, Professor of Public Administration at the University of Illinois.

He says here, and across the country, economic activity dropped sharply last spring when the pandemic began, then began to recover during the summer. In the fall though, it slowed down again as COVID case counts increased. Whether that recovery continues as 2021 begins, depends on the virus.

The rate of people catching COVID-19 may be slowing down in the Quad Cities, but the number of people dying from it is rising. 

Unemployment rose in the Quad Cities last month to 4.6 per cent, from 3.8 per cent at this time a year ago. The last time the October rate was this high or higher occurred in 2016 when it was 5.2 per cent.

Michelle O'Neill / WVIK News

"Explosion," "unmanageable," and "raging" are a few of the words health officials use to describe the rapid spread of COVID-19 in the Quad Cities.