May 19, 2018 Update

The Illinois General Assembly stands adjourned until Monday, May 21st. Both chambers were in Session Tuesday through Friday of this week. Yesterday was the deadline to pass substantive Senate Bills out of House Committees. Deadline extensions are possible on some legislation still pending at the committee level. May 25th is the deadline to pass bills out of the second chamber. Roughly two weeks remain in the Spring Legislative Session.
Work continues on the development of the Fiscal Year 19 budget. A working group of legislators and budget staff continue to meet and work through the FY 19 budget. The four Legislative Leaders and the Governor met twice this week. There is still no agreement on the adoption of a formal revenue estimate for FY 19. The Governor and the Leaders reportedly discussed the possibility of a stand-alone capital bill including funding to build a new veteran’s home in Quincy. Democratic leaders expressed their reservations over the suggestion of a stand-alone capital bill. Legislators and the Governor have two weeks left in the Spring Session to develop a budget for the next fiscal year. After the May 31st deadline, it will take a 3/5ths vote in each chamber to approve the budget.
On Monday, Republican Governor Bruce Rauner issued an amendatory veto to legislation requiring a 72-hour waiting period on the sale of assault weapons. The legislation, HB1468(Carroll/Morrison), passed the General Assembly in March. The Governor used the amendatory veto to outline what he called several “criminal justice reforms”. In his amendatory veto, Governor Rauner asked the Illinois General Assembly to reinstate the death penalty for mass murderers and those who kill law enforcement officers. The amendatory veto also extends the 72-hour waiting period for delivery of all gun purchases in Illinois. The veto further bans bump stocks and trigger cranks and authorizes restraining orders to disarm dangerous individuals. In addition, the veto requires judges and prosecutors to explain why charges are reduced in plea agreements for violent offenders in gun cases and allows for local revenue to be used to hire resource officers and mental health workers to help intervene and prevent student violence. HB 1468 has been referred back to the House for consideration. Based on past practices, it is likely the House will rule the Amendatory Veto out of compliance in which case no further action will be taken on the measure.
On Thursday, Representative Carroll filed the contents of the Governor’s Amendatory Veto to HB 1468 as an amendment to SB2580 . That amendment was assigned directly to the House Floor. The House Judiciary Criminal Committee has scheduled a subject matter hearing on both the veto and the floor amendment for Monday, May 21st at 2pm in Room 114 of the Capitol.
The Illinois Senate approved new Gun Dealer Licensing legislation, SB337 /Harmon, this week by a vote of 35-18-2. The measure is called the Combating Illegal Gun Trafficking Act. The bill contains three parts. First the bill incorporates the Gun Dealer Licensing Act recently vetoed by the Governor with specific changes that the sponsor characterizes as simplifying the structure without compromising safety. The bill also includes provisions that allow for better recording and tracking of private gun sales. Finally, the bill creates the Gun Trafficking Act and requires the State Police to make certain information available about guns used in crimes. The bill now heads to the House for consideration. The sponsor indicated that additional changes may be made as the bill progresses through the House.
This week, the United States Supreme Court overturned a federal ban on state-sanctioned sports betting thus allowing state’s the ability to regulate the action.   Legislation to legalize sports betting in Illinois, SB3432 , was reassigned this week to the Senate Gaming Committee and granted a May 31st deadline extension. A hearing on the bill is not scheduled at this time.
Governor Rauner filed a new Executive Order this week (EO18-07) to address minority contracting with the State of Illinois. The executive order will create a Commission charged with issuing regularly proposed solutions to systemic causes in minority, including African-American, participation in state procurements. The Commission will review, on a quarterly basis, state agency performance as it relates to African American businesses. Report results will be reported to the African American-owned business community.
In other legislative news:
  • A House Committee approved legislation (SB2332Morrison/Lilly) by a vote of 3 – 1 which would raise the age to purchase tobacco products to the age of 21. The heads to the full House for consideration.
  • A Senate Committee will hold a hearing on May 22nd at 10 am in Room 400 of the Capital to discuss HB4595(Fine/Biss) which creates a state-run worker’s compensation insurance company. The measure, which was scheduled for a hearing this week, was postponed in committee until next week.
  • The House extended the deadline on HB68 (Lang) which would create a private right of action for patients, providers and other advocacy organizations to sue health plans for mental health parity. HB 68 is now on 2nd Reading in the House. An additional amendment was filed and moved directly to the House floor. The amendment has not been adopted at this time.
  • The Senate Human Services Committee is scheduled next week to debate HB3479 (Feigenholtz/Manar) which requires a managed care community network that contracts with the Department of Health Care and Family Services to establish, maintain, and provide a fair and reasonable reimbursement rate to pharmacy providers for pharmaceutical services, prescription drugs and drug products, and pharmacy or pharmacist provided services. HB 3479 will be debated on May 22nd at 10 am in Room 409. The bill, which was scheduled for a hearing this week, was postponed in committee until next week.
  • Representative Hoffman filed amendments ( SB 0904) to the Worker’s Compensation Act to make changes regarding fees and electronic claims. House Amendment 1 is assigned for a hearing in the House Labor Committee on May 23rd at 10am in Room 114. House amendment 2 remains in the House Rules Committee at this time. House Amendment 1:
    • (1) Requires a provider to bill an employer or its designee directly;
    • (2) Provides that the employer or the insurer must send to the provider an explanation of benefits;
    • (3) Requires employers and insurers to pay interest to providers at the rate of 2% per month if bills are not paid promptly;
    • (4) Requires the Director of Insurance to adopt rules to ensure that providers have the opportunity to comply with requests for records by employers and insurers; and
    • (5) Imposes penalties upon employers and insurers that fail to comply with the electronic claims process.
  • A House committee approved legislation (SB43 / Bertino-Tarrant) which amends the Illinois Finance Authority Act to add PACE projects to the list of projects under the Act. SB 43 now heads to the full House for consideration.
  • A House Committee approved (SB2773 /Althoff) which amends the Property Assessed Clean Energy Act to provide that a unit of local government may sell or assign assessment contracts. The legislation clarifies that the term “energy efficiency improvement” includes energy efficiency projects as defined in the Illinois Finance Authority Act. The Term “energy project” includes new construction. SB 2773 now heads to the full House for consideration.
  • A Senate Committee defeated (HB4081 Halpin/Bennett) which creates the call Center Worker and Consumer Protection Act to mandate that an employer must notify the state if they intend to move the call center our of Illinois. HB 4081 is rescheduled for a hearing in the Senate Telecommunications Committee on May 23rd at 11 am in room 212 of the Capital.
  • A House committee approved along partisan lines SJRCA4 which ratifies the Equal Rights Amendment to the United States Constitution, thirty-six years after the original deadline. The measure now moves to the House for consideration. Thirty-five of the required thirty-eight states approved the amendment by the June 30, 1982 deadline. There are differing opinions on the impact of the passage of this constitutional amendment in Illinois. The House sponsor indicated that he is not yet prepared to call the measure for a final vote because it lacks the 3/5ths votes necessary for passage.
  • The Senate overrode the Governor’s veto of SB193(Raoul/Hoffman) which creates the Worker Protection Unit within the Office of the Illinois Attorney General to intervene in, initiate, enforce, and defend all criminal or civil legal proceedings on matters and violations relating to the Prevailing Wage Act, the Employee Classification Act, the Day and Temporary Labor Services Act, and the Wage Payment and Collection Act.   The bill now heads to the House for consideration of the Governor’s veto. The Senate sponsor pledged to move a trailer bill that will allow the Department of Labor to serve on a Task Force as requested by the Governor’s Veto.
  • This week, Senator Raoul filed a second amendment to SB575 , the Keep Internet Devices Safe Act. The amendment provides that no private entity may turn on or enable, cause to be turned on or enabled, or otherwise use a digital device’s microphone to listen for or collect information, including spoken words or other audible or inaudible sounds, unless a user first agrees to a written policy meeting. Under the amendment, a private entity that collects, stores, or transmits any information collected through a digital device’s microphone concerning an Illinois resident must implement and maintain reasonable security measures to protect such information from unauthorized access, acquisition, destruction, use, modification, and disclosure. The amendment has been assigned to the Senate Judiciary Committee. It is not yet scheduled for hearing.
2018 Key Session Dates:
May 25: Third Reading Deadline for bills in second chamber, both chambers
May 31:   Adjournment