December 13, 2019 Update

GOVERNOR’S HIGHLIGHTS:
Gov. J.B. Pritzker told reporters this week that his legislative priorities for the 2020 spring legislative session include “tackling” pensions, early child education, criminal justice reform and health care next year as well as helping address legislative changes for a Chicago casino. The General Assembly returns Jan. 28th for the start of the next legislative session.Gov. Pritzker signed the following legislation of interest this week:

  • SB222 (Munoz/Rita) allows the Illinois Gaming Board and Illinois State Police to submit fingerprints of sports wagering applicants to the FBI for review.
  • SB670 (Munoz/Jones) requires corporate governance reporting for insurers.
  • SB177 (Harris/Davis) establishes the Illinois Works Jobs Program, which makes $25 million available to community-based organizations to recruiht new apprentices to work on construction projects. Under the new law, apprentices will comprise 10% of the labor force on all projects costing $500,000 or more. Funding for the Illinois Works Jobs Program will come from the $45 billion capital plan.

The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation created a new program designed to encourage innovation in financial product development in both the banking and fintech sectors.
The Office of Innovation is tasked with monitoring and responding to emerging marketplace trends and to help make Illinois an ideal destination for innovation. The Office will serve as a point of contact for innovators of financial products to receive feedback and technical assistance from the Department, as well as to educate industry sectors as a whole. The Office will be overseen by the newly-crafted position of Regulatory Innovation Officer.
The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Energy has announced up to $1 million of grant funding available for energy efficiency upgrades at public wastewater treatment plants. Under the Wastewater Treatment Plant Energy Efficiency Program, grant awards ranging from $5,000 to $500,000 will aim to reduce energy usage for Illinois municipalities. Application materials are available at Illinois EPA’s Office of Energy webpage. The application period closes at midnight on February 28, 2020.
Cannabis Roundup:
The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation filed emergency rules for licensees to be selected by lot when there are two or more applicants with tied high scores for the last remaining license or licenses in a particular Bureau of Labor Statistics region. The rules also confirm that an unsuccessful applicant does not have a right to administrative review of that result. The Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act directs IDFPR to award up to 75 conditional adult use dispensing organization licenses by May 1, 2020. A set number of licenses will be awarded to each BLS region. The emergency rules can be found here.
The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation announced four additional “Same Site” adult use cannabis licenses, which will allow existing medical cannabis dispensaries to obtain an adult use dispensing license.
The medical dispensaries who received early approval adult use licenses this week are:
Midway Dispensary
5648 S. Archer Ave.
Chicago, IL 60638


Seven Point
1132 Lake St.
Oak Park, IL 60301


Zen Leaf Chicago
6428 N. Milwaukee Ave.
Chicago, IL 60631


Zen Leaf St. Charles
3714 Illinois Ave.
St. Charles, IL 60174


Additionally, the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity is holding several workshops throughout the state to answer questions for prospective social equity applicants in advance of the Jan. 2, 2020 deadline to file applications. Details on the workshops can be found here.
The Illinois Department of Agriculture has approved two more cultivation centers to grow cannabis for adult-use which becomes legal in Illinois on January 1, 2020.

Ataraxia in Albion and Shelby County Community Services in Shelbyville are now approved to grow cannabis for adult use, bringing the number of cultivation centers in Illinois to 16.In addition to Ataraxia and Shelby County Community Services, the 14 other cultivation centers that have been licensed for adult-use growth include:


* Compass Ventures, Inc.- Litchfield
* Cresco Labs, LLC- Lincoln
* Cresco Labs, LLC- Kankakee
* Cresco Labs, LLC- Joliet
* Curative Health Cultivation, LLC- Aurora
* GTI Oglesby, LLC- Oglesby
* GTI Rock Island, LLC- Rock Island
* IESO, LLC- Carbondale
* Nature’s Grace and Wellness, LLC- Vermont
* PharmaCann, LLC- Dwight
* PharmaCann, LLC- Hillcrest
* Revolution Cannabis, LLC (DBA Ascend Illinois)- Barry
* Revolution Cannabis, LLC- Delavan
* Wellness Group Pharms, LLC- Anna


ATTORNEY GENERAL HIGHLIGHTS:
Illinois Attorney General Raoul announced a lawsuit against JUUL Labs. Raoul filed the lawsuit in Cook County Circuit Court against California-based JUUL, alleging the company intentionally marketed its harmful nicotine products to minors, misrepresented the potency of nicotine in its products and misrepresented JUUL’s products as smoking cessation devices.  


101st GENERAL ASSEMBLY:
Rep. Batinick filed legislation, HB3987, which revokes certain aspects of the comprehensive state energy bill passed in 2016. HB 3987 provides that notwithstanding anything to the contrary, certain provisions of the Electric Service Customer Choice and Rate Relief Law of 1997 relating to the recovery of costs associated with the purchase of zero emission credits do not apply to any retail customers of an electric utility that serves more than 3,000,000 retail customers in the State. The sponsor intends to retain the green energy components of the original law. Heads to House Rules.
Rep. Skillicorn filed legislation , HB3985, which prohibits a legislator from receiving any income derived from his or her ownership of any gaming-related interest, or otherwise receiving compensation for services provided to or on behalf of any gaming-related interest. Requires any legislator holding ownership in a gaming-related interest from which he or she may derive income to divest himself or herself of that interest. Heads to House Rules. Sen. Plummer reportedly filed similar legislation in the Senate although the bill has not officially been read into the record.
COMING UP:
The Senate Special Committee on Opioid Crisis Abatement will hold a hearing on Jan. 16th at 12:30 PM at Chestnut Health Systems, 50 Northgate Industrial Drive in Granite City to discuss the state’s opioid action plan implementation report.

The Illinois Senate will convene on Sunday, January 19th at noon to formally elect a new Senate President to replace President John Cullerton who is retiring. The 101st General Assembly will reconvene for the 2020 Spring Legislative Session on January 28th, 2020.


December 6, 2019 Update

GOVERNOR’S HIGHLIGHTS:
Gov. Pritzker approved the recreational cannabis trailer bill, SB1557 (Steans/Villanueva). The bill includes technical changes, clarifying language, and a revolving door prohibition for members of the General Assembly and their family members who want involvement in the recreational cannabis business.
Pritzker also signed legislation that changes lobbying disclosure. Under SB1639 (Steans/Harris), lobbyists will be required to report “sub-registrants” and the clients they represent as well as disclose any local governments they lobby. In addition, lobbyists will be required to disclose appointed or elected public offices they hold. The Secretary of State’s Office is required to build a searchable database that includes lobbyist disclosures, contributions by registered lobbyists under the Election Code, and statements of economic interest. The new law takes effect immediately.
As expected, Gov. JB Pritzker vetoed HB3902 (Bristow/Crowe) which would provide a sales tax exemption for private aircraft parts and components through December 31, 2024. Pritzker’s veto message states he is “opposed to providing a sales tax exemption to private aircraft companies. The delinquent taxes owed from Illinois’ private jet companies amounts to roughly $50 million, including interest and penalties, and if House Bill 3902 became law, the state would be allowing an additional $10 million per year in tax credits through 2024.” The bill returns to the General Assembly for consideration.
The Illinois Department of Agriculture approved two more cultivation centers to grow cannabis for adult-use which becomes legal in Illinois on Jan. 1, 2020.

IESO, LLC in Carbondale and GTI Oglesby, LLC in Oglesby are approved to grow cannabis for adult-use bringing the number of cultivation centers in Illinois to 14. 
Previously approved cultivation centers are:
* Cresco Labs, LLC- Lincoln
* Cresco Labs, LLC- Kankakee
* Cresco Labs, LLC- Joliet
* Curative Health Cultivation, LLC- Aurora
* PharmaCann, LLC- Dwight
* PharmaCann, LLC- Hillcrest
* Revolution Cannabis, LLC (DBA Ascend Illinois)- Barry
* Wellness Group Pharms, LLC- Anna
* GTI Rock Island, LLC- Rock Island
* Compass Ventures, Inc.- Litchfield
* Nature’s Grace and Wellness, LLC- Vermont
* Revolution Cannabis, LLC- DelavanThe Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation announced eight more “Same Site” adult use cannabis licenses, which will allow an existing medical cannabis dispensary to obtain an adult use dispensing license. This license will permit the dispensary to begin adult use cannabis sales at that location starting Jan. 1, 2020, provided the dispensary complies with local zoning rules or other local laws. These recent approvals raise the total number of approved “Same Site” licenses to twenty-nine. The list of dispensaries approved for adult use cannabis sales can be found here.
The medical dispensaries who most recently received early approval adult use licenses are:
Columbia Care4758 N. Milwaukee Ave.
Chicago, IL 60630EarthMed
852 S. Westgate St.
Addison, IL 60101HCI Alternatives
1014 Eastport Plaza Dr.
Collinsville, IL 62234HCI Alternatives
628 E. Adams
Springfield, IL 62701
Herbal Remedies
4440 Broadway Ste. 1
Quincy, IL 62305Mission Illinois
8554 S. Commercial Ave.
Chicago, IL 60617Nature’s Treatment
973 Tech Drive
Milan, IL 61264 The Herbal Care Center
1301 S Western Ave.
Chicago, IL 60608
Gov. Pritzker made the following appointments as Arbitrator on the Worker’s Compensation Commission:

  • Joseph Amarilio
  • Deborah Baker
  • Adam Hinrichs
  • Elaine Llerena
  • William McLaughlin
  • Dennis O’Brien

The Illinois Department of Transportation is seeking feedback on the state’s transportation system through its annual Illinois Traveler Opinion Survey, available today through Dec. 31. The survey is available online by clicking here . The Illinois Traveler Opinion Survey has been conducted annually since 2001. A copy of the 2018 survey and results, as well as data collected from past years, can be viewed here .


2020 ELECTIONS:
Legislative candidates running for office in 2020 were required to have petitions filed with the Illinois State Board of Elections by 5pm, Monday, Dec. 2nd. All objections to petitions must be filed by 5pm on Dec. 9th.The primary election is March 17, 2020.


101st GENERAL ASSEMBLY:
The following members have been appointed to the newly created Joint Commission on Ethics and Lobbying reform: Representatives Harris, Burke, Werhli and Windhorst and Senators Sims, Castro, McConchie and Curran. In addition to the legislative appointments, Governor Pritzker appointed:

  • Juliana Stratton
  • Former Senate Republican Leader Christine Radogno
  • Department of Revenue Director David Harris
  • Ann Spillane

The Commission’s final report is due March 31, 2020.Democratic State Sen. Martin Sandoval will resign his Senate seat effective January 1, 2020 at 12:01 pm. According to the State Board of Elections, candidates can file petitions to replace Sandoval on the ballot in a special nominating filing period, Dec. 3rd – 9th. State Rep. Celina Villanueva indicated interest in running to replace Sandoval. She is widely expected to be appointed to replace Sandoval and will then run to fill out the remaining 2 years of Sandoval’s term. Edgar Gonzalez Jr., a constituency services liaison for Congressman Chuy Garcia, filed petitions to run for Villanueva’s expected open seat.


COMING UP:
The Illinois Senate will convene on Sunday, January 19th at noon to formally elect a new Senate President to replace President John Cullerton who is retiring. The 101st General Assembly will reconvene for the 2020 Spring Legislative Session on January 28th, 2020.
Key 2020 Session Dates:

January 19th: Senate Convenes to elect new Senate President

January 28th: 2020 Spring Session convenes

January 24th: LRB (bill drafting) Deadline, House

January 29th: Governor’s State of the State Address

January 31st: LRB (bill drafting) Deadline, Senate

February 14th: Bill filing deadline

February 19th: Governor’s Budget Address

March 17th: Primary Election

March 27th: Committee deadline for substantive bills

April 6th – 17th: Spring Break

April 24th: 3rd Reading deadline for substantive bills

May 15th: Committee deadline for substantive bills in second chamber

May 22nd: 3rd Reading deadline for substantive bills in second chamber

May 31st: Adjournment

November 18, 2019 Update

GOVERNOR’S HIGHLIGHTS:
The Illinois Department of Agriculture has approved another cultivation center that can grow cannabis for adult-use purposes in advance of adult-use cannabis becoming legal on January 1, 2020.

Compass Ventures, Inc. in Litchfield is now licensed to grow for adult-use, bringing the number of cultivation centers to 10.  Currently, only cultivation centers licensed to grow medical marijuana can apply for early approval adult-use growth. Social equity applicants will have additional opportunities to open cultivation centers in an upcoming phase.
In addition to Compass Ventures Inc., nine other cultivation centers have been licensed for adult-growth:
* Cresco Labs, LLC- Lincoln
* Cresco Labs, LLC- Kankakee
* Cresco Labs, LLC- Joliet
* Curative Health Cultivation, LLC- Aurora
* PharmaCann, LLC- Dwight
* PharmaCann, LLC- Hillcrest
* Revolution Cannabis, LLC (DBA Ascend Illinois)- Barry
* Wellness Group Pharms, LLC- Anna
* GTI Rock Island, LLC- Rock Island
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, at the request of Gov. Pritzker, granted a Regional Emergency Declaration to permit the transportation of propane, natural gas and heating oil used for heating and drying wet grain.Gov. Pritzker made the following appointments

  • Jill Kastner will serve on the Workers’ Compensation Advisory Board.

101st GENERAL ASSEMBLY:
The General Assembly stands adjourned until Jan. 28, 2020. The final week of veto session concluded without approval of the Chicago mayor’s requests for changes to the gaming law, a graduated real estate transfer tax, and additional restrictions on vaping. No veto action was taken this week, but action was taken on several other high-profile issues including ethics reform, pension consolidation, and insulin caps.
Shortly after adjourning, Senate President John Cullerton announced that he is retiring in January. The plan right now is for the Senate to elect a new President the second week of January. Details continue to emerge and we will keep you updated on developments. Rep. Sara Feigenholtz has already expressed interest in replacing Cullerton as State Senator.
The General Assembly approved Gov. Pritzker’s plan to consolidate 649 downstate police and fire pension funds into two unified systems, SB1300 (Castro/Hoffman) . The final bill was the result of the Pension Feasibility Consolidation Task Force and negotiations with municipalities and fire and police organizations. Currently, each police and fire system is a separate fund with its own board of trustees and its own administrative staff, including investment managers. Supporters argue consolidation the funds could generate up to $1 billion a year in additional earnings through diversification and investment in a variety of instruments, as well as reducing taxpayer’s administrative costs. Governor Pritzker is expected to quickly sign the bill.
The General Assembly also approved changes to lobbying disclosure. Under SB1639 (Steans/Harris), lobbyists will be required to report “sub-registrants” and the clients they represent as well as disclose any local governments they lobby. In addition, lobbyists will be required to disclose appointed or elected public offices they hold. The Secretary of State’s Office is required to build a searchable database that includes lobbyist disclosures, contributions by registered lobbyists under the Election Code, and statements of economic interest. Earlier versions of the bill included changes to statements of economic interest filings but, those provisions were removed from the bill prior to final passage. Lobbyist income disclosure also is not included in the bill. The bill is effective immediately. Heads to the Governor.
HJR93 (Harris/Castro)Creates a 16-member Joint Commission on Ethics and Lobbying Reform to review and make recommendations for changes to the State Officials and Employees Ethics Act; the Illinois Governmental Ethics Act; the Lobbyist Registration Act; the Public Officers Prohibited Activities Act; and Article 50 of the Illinois Procurement Code. Membership includes appointments by legislators, the Governor, the Attorney General and the Secretary of State. Anyone who is currently registered to lobby or has lobbied in the past 5 years is barred from being appointed to the Commission. A final report and recommendations are due by March 31, 2020.
After a week of intense negotiations on a gaming bill, the only gaming measure that passed both chambers was a clean-up bill requested by the Illinois Gaming Board, SB222 (Munoz/Rita). The bill allows the FBI to conduct fingerprinting on gaming background checks and addresses some confidentiality issues in the sports betting law. SB 222 heads to the Governor. Efforts in the House and Senate to broker a deal to restructure the Chicago casino tax structure stalled. Legislation that addressed changes to the Chicago casino and other changes were filed on SB516 (Link/Rita) and SB669 (J. Cullerton). Neither of those bills were called for a final vote. Representative Rita pledged to continue working to try to find a solution for the Chicago casino.
Other bills considered this week include:

  • SB119 (Steans/Zalweski) is a trailer bill to the Budget Implementation bill passed last spring. This bill makes technical and other changes to ensure the intent of the FY 2020 budget implementation bill is enacted. Passed both houses; heads to the Governor.
  • HB3904 (Welch/Sims) Creates the Student Athlete Endorsement Act which allows collegiate student athletes to benefit from endorsements beginning in Jan. 2023. The bill was assigned to a subcommittee of the Senate Executive Committee.  
  • HB3902 (Bristow/Crowe) Aviation repair tax credit bill. Unbeknownst to the industry, the previous tax credit had expired. Approximately $50 million in back sales-tax is owed for the error and according to proponents, without the exemption, Illinois is at risk of losing aviation repair businesses. Passed the Senate; heads to the Governor. Gov. Pritzker vowed to veto the bill.
  • SB1784 (Hoffman/Harmon) Follow-up legislation to the Janus case. Protects employees’ personal information, affirms collective bargaining rights, and clarifies dues/deductions procedures. Passed the Senate. Heads to the Governor.
  • SB668 (J. Cullerton) Bans flavored E-cigarettes. A second amendment was filed this week and the bill passed committee 13-4 and is pending before the full Senate.
  • SB1557 (Steans/Villanueva) Recreational cannabis trailer bill. The bill includes technical changes, clarifying language, and a revolving door prohibition for members of the General Assembly and their family members who want involvement in the recreational cannabis business. Passed both chambers; heads to the Governor.
  • SB670 (Munoz/Jones) Creates the Corporate Governance Annual Disclosure Law. Requires insurers to disclose corporate governance structure, policies, and practices to the Director of Insurance. Heads to the Governor.
  • SB767 (Murphy/D’Amico) Requires IDOT to conduct a traffic study following a crash fatality on a state highway. Passed the Senate; assigned to House Transportation: Vehicles and Safety Committee.
  • SB2104 (Jones/Zalewski) Extends the Pharmacy Practice Act and makes changes suggested by the Pharmacy Task Force. Passed both chambers; heads to the Governor.
  • SB1297 (Jones) Requires IDOT to study the use of red-light cameras. Passed the Senate Transportation Committee unanimously; pending before full Senate.
  • HB1271 (Zalewski/Hastings) Trailer bill on craft distiller licenses. Passed Senate; heads to the Governor.
  • SB730 (A. Williams/J. Cullerton) Trailer bill to SB 75 from the spring which was the bipartisan bicameral sexual harassment and ethics reform. Passed both chambers; heads to the Governor.
  • HB3888 (Mayfield/Curran) Imposes additional regulations on ethylene oxide emissions. An amendment was filed in the Senate to extend the phase out in densely populated areas. After lengthy testimony, the bill failed in the Senate Executive Committee 7-4-4.
  • SB667 (Manar/Guzzardi) Caps out-of-pocket insulin costs at $100 for a 30-day supply. The bill applies only to insurance plans regulated by the state. Passed both houses; heads to the Governor.
  • SB1864 (Link/Williams) Expands the Smoke Free Illinois Act to include vaping and e-cigarette products. The bill is assigned to the House Human Services Committee but was not called for vote. This issue could be revisited in the spring session.

Additional ethics and conflict of interest legislation was filed this week. SB2300 (McConchie) and companion bill HB3963 (Butler) would prohibit a member of the State Board of Elections from also contributing to or being an officer of a state or federal political committee. The bill also lays out the process by which members of the State Board of Elections must resign from political committees. SB 2300 heads to Senate  Assignments; HB 3963 heads to House Rules.
Rep. Welch filed HB3965 which requires every insurance company authorized to do business in this State or accredited by this State with assets of at least $50,000,000 to submit an annual report on its voluntary supplier diversity program to the Department of Insurance. Heads to House Rules.
Sen. Iris Martinez replaced Sen. Hutchinson as the chair of the Senate Revenue Committee.
Patrick Joyce, a businessman from Kankakee and son of longtime late Sen. Jerry Joyce, is the new state senator for the 40th Senate District. Joyce replaces Sen. Hutchinson. Joyce is expected to face at least three challengers in the primary.
Republican State Rep. Lindsay Parkhurst announced she will not seek re-election in 2020. Instead, she will run for a judgeship.
Local party leaders meet tonight to select a replacement for Rep. Luis Arroyo.
COMING UP:
The 101st General Assembly will reconvene for the 2020 Spring Legislative Session on January 28th, 2020.Here is a link to the 2020 House calendar andhere is a link to the 2020 Senate calendar.
Key 2020 Session Dates:
January 28th: 2020 Spring Session convenes

January 24th: LRB (bill drafting) Deadline, House

January 29th: Governor’s State of the State Address

January 31st: LRB (bill drafting) Deadline, Senate

February 14th: Bill filing deadline

February 19th: Governor’s Budget Address

March 17th: Primary Election

March 27th: Committee deadline for substantive bills

April 6th – 17th: Spring Break

April 24th: 3rd Reading deadline for substantive bills

May 15th: Committee deadline for substantive bills in second chamber

May 22nd: 3rd Reading deadline for substantive bills in second chamber

May 31st: Adjournment

November 8, 2019 Update

GOVERNOR’S HIGHLIGHTS:
Gov. Pritzker plans to take a “first step” to address state ethics reforms during next week’s veto session. Pritzker plans to immediately address lobbying disclosure and then look at broader reforms during the spring session. The Governor’s reforms have not been filed at this time.Gov. Pritzker made the following appointments:

  • Tim Drea will serve on the Illinois Employment Security Advisory Board.
  • John Gedney will serve on the Illinois Employment Security Advisory Board.
  • Joanna Webb-Gauvin will serve on the Illinois Employment Security Advisory Board.
  • Helena Lefkow will serve on the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Medical Fee Advisory Board.

The State Fire Marshal in conjunction with the Illinois Finance Authority issued over $9.3 million in no interest or low interest loans to emergency responders across the state. The loans are made available through the Fire Truck Revolving Loan Program and Ambulance Revolving Loan Program. In total, 23 communities received funds for new fire trucks and 11 communities received funds for ambulances.
CANNABIS HIGHLIGHTS:
The Illinois Department of Agriculture approved two cultivation centers this week to grow cannabis for adult-use purposes in advance of adult-use cannabis becoming legal on January 1, 2020.

Wellness Group Pharms, LLC in Anna and GTI Rock Island, LLC are now licensed to start growing for adult-use purposes. Currently, only cultivation centers that are licensed to grow medical marijuana can apply for early approval adult-use growth. Social equity applicants will have additional opportunities to open cultivation centers in an upcoming phase.In addition to Wellness Group Pharms and GTI Rock Island, seven other cultivation centers have been licensed for adult-use growth:* Cresco Labs, LLC- Lincoln
* Cresco Labs, LLC- Kankakee
* Cresco Labs, LLC- Joliet
* Curative Health Cultivation, LLC- Aurora
* PharmaCann, LLC- Dwight
* PharmaCann, LLC- Hillcrest
* Revolution Cannabis, LLC (DBA Ascend Illinois)- Barry
Craft growers, infusers, and transporters license applications will be available through IDOA on January 7th.
The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation announced three more “Same Site” adult use cannabis licenses, which will allow an existing medical cannabis dispensary to obtain an adult use dispensing license. This license will permit the dispensary to begin adult use cannabis sales at that location starting January 1, 2020, provided the dispensary complies with local zoning rules or other local laws. These recent approvals raise the total number of approved “Same Site” licenses to fourteen. New same site licenses were issued for:

Dispensary 335001 N. Clark St.Chicago, IL 60640Maribis of Chicago4570 S. Archer Ave.Chicago, IL 60632     Maribis of Springfield         2272 North Grand Ave. Grandview, IL 62702 

101st GENERAL ASSEMBLY:
The General Assembly reconvenes Tuesday for the second and final week of the Fall Veto Session. No specific veto action is expected, but several other measures are positioned for consideration next week. Items that could come up for discussion next week include Gov. Pritzker’s pension consolidation legislation, Mayor Lightfoot’s gaming and transfer tax; insulin caps; a red -light camera study; tweaks to the recreational cannabis law; and ethics reforms.
Two pensions bills are pending before the General Assembly next week. SB1671 (Martinez/Harris) amends the General Provisions article of the Illinois Pension Code to facilitate contracts with emerging investment managers. The bill previously passed the Senate and is now pending on 2nd Reading in the House. Gov. Pritzker’s downstate police and fire pension consolidation language was filed as an amendment to SB616 (Cullerton).   The underlying bill is on 3rd Reading in the Senate; the amendment remains in Senate Assignments. Once passed by the Senate, SB 616 would require three full readings in the House.
House Republicans filed a series of ethics reform legislation. HB3954 (Durkin) modifies requirements on the Statement of Economic Interest filings by candidates and members of the General Assembly. HB3955 (Durkin) creates mandatory and publicly available documentation of legislative communications with any state agency regarding contracts. HB3947 (Demmer)would ban legislators from performing paid lobbying work with local governments. HJRCA 36 (Durkin) requires a special election to fill General Assembly vacancies through the same laws governing party primaries. HR588 (Durkin) will allow a Chief Co-Sponsor of any bill with five co-sponsors from each party to call it for a vote in a substantive committee. The bills are all in House Rules.
Rep. Skillicorn also filed ethics legislation. HB3956 bans former legislators from lobbying for a 5 year period following leaving office. HB3957 prevents legislators from participating in any representation of a property tax appeals case.   HB3958 provides that a member of the General Assembly, his or her spouse, and any immediate family member living with that member of the General Assembly shall not, for compensation, engage in any lobbying activity or otherwise communicate with any official of the executive or legislative branch of State government or any official of any unit of local government. The bills are in House Rules.
Rep. Buckner filed legislation, HB3953, to create the Cannabis Banking and Credit Union Act. Establishes a procedure to license financial institutions to provide banking services to cannabis businesses. Heads to House Rules.
Rep. Arroyo resigned his legislative seat Friday, Nov. 1st. A replacement has not been named.
Sen. Mattie Hunter was named the new Chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee. As Chairman, Sen. Hunter indicated her priorities are:

  • Seeking ways to make public transportation more accessible and affordable, particularly in underserved communities.
  • Reviving the Disadvantaged Business Revolving Loan Program to provide capital necessary for properly certified Disadvantaged Business Enterprises – small, minority, and female-owned businesses – to finance IDOT project-specific work, acquire valuable work experience and establish or rebuild credit lines.
  • Conducting a study to evaluate the usage of red-light cameras throughout the state.
  • Increasing the number of minority-, veteran- and woman-owned businesses engaged in state and local government contracting.
  • Ensuring transparent and efficient implementation of IDOT’s Multi-Year Plan.

2020 Elections:
Supreme Court Justice Karmeier is not seeking re-election. Appellate Justice David Overstreet from Mt. Vernon announced he will run as a Republican to replace Karmeier.
COMING UP:
The 2020 spring legislative session calendar should be released next week.Veto Session: Nov. 12th – 14th    
As always, please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns.

November 1, 2019 Update

GOVERNOR’S HIGHLIGHTS
The Department of Insurance announced five health insurance carriers will again offer Illinois consumers individual Gold, Silver and Bronze plans for the Illinois Exchange 2020 plan year. New to the exchange this year is Quartz Health Benefit Plans Corporation. Multiple plans are available in all 102 Illinois counties, and in most counties, consumers have more than one carrier to pick from. Overall, premium rates are down and rating areas remain unchanged from 2019. The enrollment period is Nov. 1st through Dec. 15th.
The Illinois Department of Transportation is hosting two public hearings in Joliet to share details on proposed improvements to Interstate 80.
ATTORNEY GENERAL HIGHLIGHTS:
Attorney General Kwame Raoul announced that Illinois has reached an agreement in the lawsuit filed against U.S. Attorney General William Barr for violating federal law by placing conditions on funding for Illinois law enforcement and criminal justice initiatives from the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (Byrne JAG) program. The order secures $6.6 million in federal funding for Illinois law enforcement regardless of the conditions.
101st GENERAL ASSEMBLY:
The first week of the two-week veto session adjourned with legislators considering one veto override in the Senate. A total of 8 vetoed bills were pending before the General Assembly: 7 total vetoes and one amendatory veto. The Senate considered overriding one veto, but the motion failed. The House did not consider any vetoes this week.
Consideration of several other agenda items is being pushed to next month including Gov. Pritzker’s pensions consolidation proposal, changes to the newly enacted recreational cannabis bill and Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s gaming changes and transfer tax. The Chicago Mayor’s requests continue to face an uphill climb in the General Assembly. This week, House Republican Leader Durkin announced his caucus could not support the transfer tax plan. Several House Democrats made their support contingent on a portion of the proceeds funding homelessness in the City, but the Mayor plans to use the funds to fill the City’s budget hole. Passage of changes to the gaming tax structure for a City owned casino may also be challenging. Several downstate lawmakers expressed reservations about voting for changes that benefit only the City of Chicago. Negotiations are ongoing and legislative proposals are expected to be filed next month.
The Illinois Senate voted 27-23-1 to sustain Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s veto of a bill, SB2026 (Rezin/Mason), that would prohibit the current or any future governor from seeking federal approval to weaken consumer protection provisions, including those governing pre-existing conditions, under the Affordable Care Act.
Rep. Arroyo (D, Chicago) resigned today from his State Representative position.
President Cullerton noted he intends to work with Speaker Madigan to jointly address governing rules and statutory changes to enhance ethical standards for members of the General Assembly. 
Sen. Barickman filed SB2297, which gives more autonomy to the Legislative Inspector General by voiding any requirements that the LIG seek Commission approval prior to conducting an investigation or issuing a subpoena.  Rep. Demmer filed HB3946, which requires everyone in Illinois who functions as a lobbyist to register with state regulators and HB3947, which prohibits sitting lawmakers and their spouses/close family members from working as paid lobbyists at the Executive, state or local government levels.
Representative McCombie filed HJR87 which creates the State Ethics Task Force to address corruption within Illinois government.
Gov. Pritzker’s downstate pension consolidation language was filed by President Cullerton as an amendment to SB616. The amendment would create the Police Officers’ Pension Investment Fund and the Firefighters’ Pension Investment Fund. Provides for the transfer of the assets and investment authority of downstate police and downstate firefighter pension funds to the respective funds. The amendment is currently in the Senate Assignments committee. Action is expected during the second week of veto session.
Legislative highlights include:

  • HB3094 (Welch), the Student Athlete Endorsement Act allows collegiate student athletes to benefit from endorsements beginning in Jan. 2023. The measure received Gov. Pritzker’s support during a press conference this week. Passed the House 86-25-3, heads to the Senate. Companion legislation was filed in the Senate, SB2278 (Harris). Meanwhile, the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s Board of Governors voted unanimously on Tuesday to begin a process that would allow college athletes to “benefit from the use of their name, image and likeness.” No additional details were provided by the NCAA.
  • HB3941 (Welch) Creates the Illinois Athlete Agents Act of 2021. Requires licensure of agents for student-athletes with the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation and establishes qualifications for licensure and requirements for athlete agents. Heads to House Rules.
  • HB3888 (Mayfield) Imposes additional regulations on ethylene oxide emissions passed the House 60-47-4. The bill was amended to remove the immediate effective date. Heads to the Senate. HB3885 (Durkin) which would give home rule municipalities the authority ban ethylene oxide emissions from sterilization facilities in their communities failed in the House Energy and Environment Committee on a partisan vote of 11-0-17.
  • SB667 (Manar) Caps out-of-pocket insulin costs at $100 for a 30-day supply and requires the Attorney General to review causes for rising insulin prices. The bill applies only to insurance plans regulated by the state. Passed the Senate 48 – 7. Heads to the House.
  • SB1784 (Hoffman/Harmon) Follow-up legislation to the Janus case. Protects employees’ personal information, affirms collective bargaining rights and clarifies dues/deductions procedures. Passed House 93-23; heads to Senate for concurrence.
  • Both Senate and House Committees held subject matter hearings on flavored tobacco bans. No votes were taken. Flavored tobacco bans up for consideration during veto session are HB3883 (Conroy) and SB668 (J. Cullerton).   HB 3883 remains in the House Human Services Committee and SB 668 FA # 1 remains in the Senate Assignments Committee.
  • SB1864 (Link) Expands the Smoke Free Illinois Act to include vaping and e-cigarette products. Passed the Senate 41-11. Heads to the House.
  • SB1881 (Hastings/Zalewski) Creates the Local Government Revenue Recapture Act. Provides that a municipality or county that receives a disbursement of tax proceeds from the Department of Revenue may contract with a third party for the purpose of ensuring that the municipality or county receives the amount to which it is entitled. Passed the Senate 57 – 0. Heads to the Governor’s desk.
  • SB665 (Fine) Health insurance rate regulation legislation was positioned again for final passage in the Senate. No vote was taken this week but he bill was placed back on the order of postponed consideration and could be considered for final passage during the final week veto session.

COMING UP:Veto Session: Nov. 12th – 14th