April 9, 2021 Update

The Illinois General Assembly is concluding its two-week spring break.  
The House extended the committee deadline on 19 House Bills. The remaining House Bills that did not pass at the committee level have been reassigned back to the House Rules Committee.  
Representative Harris filed an amendment to the Prior Authorization Reform Act, HB 711. A summary of the amendment is here. The amendment is assigned to the House Rules Committee.
Senator Villa filed Senate Committee amendment #1 to SB 516, which creates the Illinois Drug Reuse Opportunity Program Act. A summary of the amendment is here. The amendment is pending in the Senate Assignments Committee.
Senator Tom Cullerton filed an amendment to SB 731 to create the Data Transparency and Privacy Act. The measure requires any business that processes personal or de identified information must – prior to processing – notify the consumer who owns or is referenced in the data (using a service agreement, or through ready access via the business website or mobile application). In addition, consumers: have a “right to know” about the types of information that they can request from business; can opt out of agreements involving the sale of personal information to third parties and affiliates; and can request that inaccurate personal info be corrected/deleted by a business. Further, the legislation prescribes a protocol for businesses to use not only in handling consumer requests but also in pricing incentives and prohibitions against discrimination. Businesses, affiliates, and third parties must conduct risk assessments, and enforcement of this Act can come through private actions or the Attorney General. The amendment is pending in the Senate Assignments Committee.  Senator Hastings filed a floor amendment to SB 1166 which Creates the Investing in Illinois Works Tax Credit Act and the Illinois Hazardous Workforce Materials Training Act. The amendment is pending in the Senate Assignments Committee. Cyril Nichols, the associate athletic director for the City Colleges, was selected to represent the 32nd House District, replacing former State Representative Andre Thapedi who resigned last month. 
In Tuesday’s consolidation election, Democratic State Representative Kelly Burke was elected mayor of Evergreen Park and Democratic State Representative Thaddeus Jones was election mayor of Calumet City. Both will continue to serve in the state legislature while also holding local elected office. 
Sean Anderson was named communications director for Speaker Welch. He previously served as a principal at Kivvit, leading the design and development of communications and public affairs strategies. Jaclyn Driscoll will serve as the Speaker’s press spokesperson. Driscoll comes from a radio broadcasting background as a statehouse reporter.   

GOVERNOR’S HIGHLIGHTS:New Laws: The Governor signed several bills over the course of the last week.   New Public Acts from the 102nd General Assembly: 

  •  PA 102-1 [HB 1871 (Stuart/Morrison)] makes permanent some pandemic-related election law changes enacted specifically for the 2020 election cycle. This includes continued use of drop boxes and curbside voting; the counting of all ballots mailed within appropriate guidelines (even if mailed without postage); and usage of federal HAVA funds for the purchase of drop boxes.
  •  PA 102-2 [HB 2415 (Moeller/Castro)] provides an additional window of opportunity for county governments like Kane County to receive taxes from cannabis sales.  
  • PA 102-3 [SB 168 (Harmon/Willis) allows for an expedited process for the reopening of West Lake Hospital in Melrose Park. 

 New Public Acts from the 101st General Assembly lame duck session:

  •  PA 101-660 [HB 156 (Zalewski/Jones)] extends the sunset of the Transportation Network Providers Act to June 1, 2021l.
  •  PA 101-661 [HB 377 (Yingling/Bush)] makes changes to the Human Rights Act. 
  •  PA 101-662 [HB 570 (Hoffman/Righter)] contains TIF extensions for the communities of Highwood, Cahokia, Charleston and Flora. 
  •  PA 101-664 [HB 2275 (Conyears-Ervin/Cunningham)] allows Chicago teachers to have the same bargaining rights as teachers in the rest of the state. 
  • PA 101-663 [HB 1559 (Cassidy/Cunningham)] is a trailer measure to the above new law; this Public Act represents an agreement between Chicago Public Schools and the Chicago Teachers Union. It moves into the permissible subject area of collective bargaining negotiations over the length of the school day and the length of the school year.
  • PA 101-673  [HB 2451(Martwick/Martwick)] changes pension benefits for Chicago firefighters. Removes a birthdate restriction on eligibility at age 55 for a 3% automatic annual increase in retirement annuity that is not subject to a maximum increase of 30%. Adds calculations of annual increases in retirement annuities of those retiring after September 1, 1967. 
  •  PA 101-665 [HB 2461 (Hoffman/Castro)] is a combination of four bills from Spring 2020 on authorization of state property land transfers.  
  •   PA 101-666 [HB 2488 (Zalewski/Bush)] addresses problems within the prescription drug monitoring program, making changes to allow for third party vendor access to the program.
  • PA 101-667 [HB 3878 (Costa Howard/Ellman)] repeals the Railroad Liquor Act. 
  • PA 101-668 [SB 54 (Feigenholtz/Zalewski)] allows retailers to make liquor home deliveries directly to consumers. 
  •  PA 101-669 [SB 1530 (Belt/Harris) grandfathers in a safety net designation for Gateway Medical Center in Granite City.  
  • PA 101-670 [SB 1805 (Castro/Evans)] authorizes transfer of funds to the MWRD pension fund.
  • PA 101-671 [SB 2527 (Van Pelt/Collins)] authorizes DCFS to transfer property to the Carole Robertson Center for Learning.
  •   PA 101-672 [SB 2779 (Holmes/Hernandez)] addresses the nomination signatures needed for candidacy to the Fox Valley Park District.

COVID 19 Update: Illinois’ COVID metrics continue trending upward as health officials warn of a fourth surge of the deadly virus. Illinois’ positivity rate swelled this week to 4.2% with the test positivity rate growing to 4.8%. Plans to ease further restrictions remain on hold. 
On Thursday, the Illinois Department of Public Health reported 3,739 new cases of COVID-19, including 34 additional deaths. As of Wednesday night, 1,798 individuals in Illinois were reported to be in the hospital with COVID-19. Of those, 351 patients were in the ICU and 151 patients with COVID-19 were on ventilators.
Vaccine Update: As of Wednesday, over 2.5 million, or 19.6 percent, of the state’s 12.7 million residents are fully vaccinated. Beginning Monday, any resident over the age of 16 is eligible for the vaccine.   
As of Thursday, 6,707,183 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in Illinois. Illinois is averaging administering 112,680 doses of vaccine/day. Wednesday, a record 154,201 doses were administered in Illinois. 
Executive Orders:Executive Order 2021-06 reissues most executive orders, extending a majority of the provisions through May 1, 2021. Note, the suspension of in-person sports betting registration requirements were not renewed in the latest Executive Order.  
Illinois State Board of Elections: The Illinois State Board of Elections voted unanimously to place executive director Steve Sandvoss on leave after being the subject of an online extortion attempt. Assistant Executive Director Bernadette Matthews is serving as interim director while Sandvoss is on leave.
November 2022 Election: Chicago Alderman Pat Dowell announced she will seek the Democratic nomination for Secretary of State in 2022. The 63-year-old – who has served as an alderman since 2007 – represents the 3rd Ward, which encompasses the South Loop and Bronzeville.  

The Illinois General Assembly returns to in-person session on Tuesday, April 13th at noon. Both chambers are scheduled to be in session weekly until the May 31st adjournment deadline. 
The deadline to pass substantive senate bills out of Senate committees is Friday, April 16th.