August 7, 2023 Update


New Laws: Hundreds of bills were signed into law over the past week. Read more hereherehere,  here , here and here. There are approximately 156 bills still awaiting Gubernatorial action.

Cross Agency Reproductive Healthcare Initiatives:  New actions in Illinois are aimed at lowering barriers to access reproductive care. The new programs focus on navigating systems, reducing costs for patients, and supporting healthcare facilities. The new initiatives include:

·       Partnership between IHFS, IDPH, UIC, RUSH, and the Chicago Abortion Fund to create a hospital navigation program: CARLA (Complex Abortion Regional Line for Access), launching in August, is designed to give appropriate and expeditious treatment to patients who present for abortions at clinics who need a higher level of care than can be provided at the clinics. A nurse-staffed and specially trained hotline will aid patients with complex medical needs in scheduling appointments within hospital systems, acquiring required pre-operative testing, and arranging payment, transportation, and childcare for treatment.

·       Request for Proposals for a public facing hotline for abortion service navigation: IDPH received $10 million for this program in the FY2024 budget. The Reproductive Health Public Navigation Hotline will aid patients, including those travelling from out of state, in finding and navigating care.

·       Creation of a Family Planning Program for Medicaid: The program provides comprehensive coverage for family planning services for people otherwise not eligible for Medicaid based on income threshold. This plan raises the income eligibility above threshold for the regular Medicaid program and includes services such as an annual preventive exam, family planning counseling, all Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved methods of contraception, permanent methods of birth control (tubal ligation or vasectomy), and basic infertility counseling. Services include cervical cancer screening and treatment, screening mammograms, breast cancer gene (BRCA) genetic counseling and testing as applicable, vaccines that support reproductive health, abortion care, and transportation for family planning visits.

·       Capital Grant Program: The Illinois Reproductive Health Facilities Capital Grant Program will be administered by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) and provides $5 million in capital funding to support reproductive health care providers in Illinois that are experiencing increased demand for their services. The capital grants fund improvements and repairs, new construction, security upgrades, and equipment to increase capacity and enhance safety, which includes the purchase of vehicles for mobile care units.

·       Authorization of reproductive health reimbursement for state employees who work out of state: Approximately 1,600 female state employees or dependents live out-of-state, including some in states where access to reproductive healthcare has been seriously restricted. The Travel Reimbursement Program, modeled after an existing state program for organ donation and adoption, will cover transportation and lodging for state employees who must travel to access safe and sufficient reproductive healthcare.

Read more here.

Opening Doors Homeownership Program Relaunches: The Illinois Housing Development Authority reopened a homeownership program designed to help working-class families and underrepresented communities of color throughout the state of Illinois. The Opening Doors program is designed to aid households who have historically faced steeper barriers in their path toward homeownership with $6,000 in forgivable assistance for down payment and/or closing costs. This latest round of assistance is funded through $20 million in Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds authorized by the American Rescue Plan Act and appropriated to IHDA from the Illinois General Assembly. IHDA expects to assist more than 3,000 homebuyers.

Illinois Commerce Commission: The Illinois Commerce Commission opened a notice of inquiry into a recent Ameren Illinois study examining the costs and benefits of remaining a Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO) member compared to joining PJM Interconnection, the grid operator that serves the northern part of the state. Read more here.

Gubernatorial Appointments: The Governor appointed David Welter to serve as a Member of the Executive Ethics Commission.

103rd Illinois General Assembly:

The House Appropriations-Public Safety Committee and the House Insurance Committee will hold a hearing on August 14 at 10 am in the Bilandic Building and Virtual Room 1 to discuss IDOC health services.


2024 Election Update: Republican Representative Mike Marron will not seek reelection to the 104th House District. 

COGFA July Revenue Report: The Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability released its July Revenue Report. 

From the report: “Base revenues into the State’s General Funds performed quite well to start off FY 2024 with year- over-year growth of $396 million. However, when last July’s $584 million deposit of ARPA reimbursements are included in the calculation, the overall change is a decline of $188 million to start the fiscal year. July had the same number of receipting days as the same month the prior fiscal year. The increase in base receipts was spurred by notable improvement from income tax receipts. Personal Income Taxes rose $184 million in July, a net increase of $153 million when removing distributions to the Refund Fund and the Local Government Distributive Fund (LGDF). Similarly, Corporate Income Taxes rose a solid $117 million, or $95 million on a net basis.

As provided by P.A. 103-0008, the annual percentage of personal income tax revenues that are to go to the Income Tax Refund Fund was lowered from 9.25% in FY 2023 to 9.15% in FY 2024. The percentage of corporate income tax revenues that are to go to the Income Tax Refund Fund was also reduced, from 14.5% to 14.0%. Reduced refund fund percentages mean that more available funds could go into the State’s General Funds. However, the gain in net receipts due to these percentage changes will be more than offset by an increase in the portion distributed to the LGDF. Public Act 103-0008 also provided that 6.47% (instead of 6.16%) of personal income tax revenues (net of refunds) shall go to the LGDF in FY 2024. The amount of net corporate receipts to the LGDF did not change and remains at 6.85%.

The growth in base revenues was also aided by a significant rise in Federal Sources base receipts. In July these particular receipts were $253 million higher than the year prior. However, if the $584 million in non-base federal dollars receipted in July 2022 from the ARPA Reimbursement for Essential Government Services are included into the equation, Federal Sources were actually down $331 million for the month. No additional ARPA reimbursements are anticipated in FY 2024, which will be a comparable disadvantage throughout the year when comparing FY 2024 with FY 2023 year- to-date totals.

Sales Taxes held flat in July on a gross basis. On a net basis, when accounting for distributions to the Road Fund and other transportation funds, a modest decline of $11 million occurred due the increase in Road Fund Transfers under current law. In regard to all Other State Sources, revenues combined to eke out a $2 million gain. A $20 million increase in Interest on State Funds & Investments, a $7 million rise in Corporate Franchise Taxes, and a slight $1 million increase in Public Utility Taxes helped offset declines in General Funds receipt distributions from Insurance Taxes [-$16 million]; Inheritance Taxes [-$6 million]; and the Cigarette Tax [-$4 million].

The performance of Transfers In was mixed. Lottery Transfers were $20 million higher, Gaming Transfers from Illinois’ casinos were up $7 million, and Cannabis Transfers rose $1 million. These gains, however, could not overcome the $124 million decline in Other Transfers, resulting in an overall Transfers In decline of $96 million. The notable decline in Other Transfers is primarily due to a Capital Projects Fund July 2022 transfer of $140 million that did not repeat in July of this year.” Read the full report here.