February 18, 2024 Update


Both chambers return to session Tuesday, February 20 through Thursday, February 22, with the Governor delivering his combined State of the State and Budget Address on February 21.  While committee hearings are scheduled for next week, the primary focus will be on the Governor’s budget and policy priorities. Committee hearings will significantly ramp up in March.

There was an avalanche of bill filings in the week leading up to last Friday’s filing deadline — 952 House Bills and 816 Senate Bills were filed just last week. There were already 762 House Bills and 694 Senate Bills previously filed for consideration in the 2024 legislative session. Below are some highlights of recent bill filings:

·      Artificial Intelligence: Several bills were filed to regulate artificial intelligence; see a summary here.

·      Elected CPS Board: Senate President Harmon filed SB 3757, creating a hybrid appointed/elected process to transition from an appointed to a fully elected Chicago School Board.

·      Legalize “Magic Mushrooms”: Senator Ventura filed SB 3695 which would allow for the sale, use, or personal possession of psilocybin (commonly referred to as magic mushrooms) in Illinois. Companion legislation, HB 1 (Ford), is assigned to the House Executive Committee. Read more here.

·      Foreign Countries of Concern: Republicans in both chambers filed legislation to regulate the influence from foreign countries of concern. A summary is here.

·      Prescription Medication: The cost of and access to prescription medications is the subject of several pieces of legislation filed last week. See a recap here.

·      IML Agenda: The Illinois Municipal League’s Legislative Agenda is here.

·      Captive Audience Meetings: The Illinois AFL-CIO spring agenda includes SB 3649 (Peters) and HB 5572 (Evans) which protect all workers from unwanted religious and political speech in the workplace. According to the union, these mandatory captive audience meetings subject employees to the religious or political views of the employer during work hours.

·      Fantasy Sports Regulation: Legislation creating the Fantasy Sports Consumer Protection Act would authorize the Illinois Gaming Board to regulate the conduct of fantasy contest operators. The companion bills are HB 5648 (Delgado) SB 3710 (Collins).  The bills codify into state law that fantasy sports games are a game of skill, not sports wagering. A statement from Senator Collins says, “The proposed legislation aims to not only protect the hundreds of thousands of fantasy sports fans across Illinois but also the integrity of the games they enjoy … while promoting innovation and removing barriers to growth that threaten the fantasy sport industry.”

·      Warehouse Worker Protection: Companion bills were filed to create the Warehouse Worker Protection Act – SB 3272 (Villanueva) and HB 4825 (Olickal). 

·      Consumer Legal Funding: SB 3314 (Cunningham) allows for refinancing of consumer legal funding; the House has a companion bill in Representative Tarver’s HB 4614.

·      College Athletes: HB 5625 (Buckner) allows collegiate athletes to be eligible for worker’s compensation.

·      Abortion/Gender Affirming Care: HB 4876 (Stava-Murray) The Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act would apply to parents and guardians who refuse to allow their children access to “necessary medical care, including, but not limited to, primary care services, abortion services, or gender-affirming services.” Further allows minors to consent to the performance of abortion services and gender-affirming services.   

·      HB 5152 (Cassidy) allows individuals and health care providers who leave states with laws limiting access to gender-affirming medical care and abortion to receive a $500 tax credit if they move to Illinois. The tax credit would also be extended to public school teachers who relocate to Illinois because of “content-based restrictions” in their home state that prevent them from addressing subjects like race, gender identity or sexual orientation in the classroom.

·      Assisted Suicide: Creating the End-of-Life Options for Terminally Ill Patients Act is the focus of SB 3499 (Holmes). Under the measure, qualified patients with a terminal disease could request aid-in-dying medication from physicians.

·      Carbon Dioxide Pipeline Moratorium: HB 4835 (Moeller) and SB 3441 (McClure) creates the Safety Moratorium on Carbon Dioxide Pipelines Act.

·      Hospital Staffing Levels: SB 3709 (Collins) and HB 5320 (Buckner) address staffing levels in hospitals. SB 3217 (Ventura) increases the fine for a hospital that fails to implement a written staffing plan for nursing service.

·      Minors Consumption of Alcohol: HB 4945 (Cabello) allows individuals aged 18 and 21 to consume alcohol, including at licensed establishments, as long as they are with their parents.

The House Public Utilities Committee will hold a hearing on February 20 at 2 pm in Room 114 of the Capitol to discuss right of refusal. 

Lyme disease will be the topic of a hearing on February 20 at 8 a.m. in the Capitol’s Room 114. It will be a joint subject matter hearing of the Senate Public Health Committee and the House Human Services Committee.

A list of House Committee hearings is available here. A list of Senate Committee hearings is here. 

2024 Key Dates and Session Deadlines:

February 21: Governor’s Budget and State of the State Address

March 15: Senate Committee Deadline for Senate Bills

March 19: Primary Election

April 5: House Committee Deadline for House Bills

April 12: Senate Third Reading Deadline

April 19: House Third Reading Deadline

May 3: Committee Deadline for Bills in the Opposite Chamber

May 17: House and Senate Third Reading Deadline for Bills in the Opposite Chamber

May 24: Adjournment

May 25 – 31: Contingent Session Days


Department on Aging: Governor JB Pritzker appointed Mary Killough, a lifelong advocate for seniors, as the next director of the Illinois Department on Aging. She currently is Vice President of Operations and Government Relations for AccentCare, a national home health and hospice services provider. Killough is a licensed attorney with over 30 years’ experience serving Illinois’ senior population, including being Deputy Director of IDoA from 2011-2015.

Illinois Works Funding Awarded: Over $18 million in funding was awarded to 36 recipients to expand the Illinois Works Pre-Apprenticeship Program – an undertaking to ensure a qualified talent pipeline of diverse candidates in construction and the building trades. Specifically, DCEO uses Illinois Works to expand its statewide network of providers to recruit, prescreen, and provide pre-apprenticeship skills training. The Illinois Works Pre-Apprenticeship Program also helps its graduates transition to a full apprenticeship program in construction and building trades. Read more here.

Lead Service Line Replacement Grants: The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency is offering nearly $6.6 million to help communities meet the requirements of the Lead Service Line Replacement and Notification Act (LSLRN Act). This is the fourth offering of the Lead Service Line Inventory (LSLI) Grant Program.  Through it, local governments receive between $20,000 – $50,000 to create a complete lead service line inventory.

The latest LSLI Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO), and all required forms and information, can be found on the Illinois EPA website at: https://epa.illinois.gov/topics/drinking-water/public-water-users/lsli-grant-opportunity.html. Applications for the LSLI Grant Program will be accepted from February 15, 2024 until funding has been expended. All applicants must pre-qualify through the Grant Accountability and Transparency Act Grantee Portal. Read more here.

Paratransit Vehicles: The Illinois Department of Transportation announced that more than 500 paratransit vehicles have been awarded to 113 transit providers through its Consolidated Vehicle Procurement Program. The grants help providers offer safe, reliable and accessible transportation options in their communities. The vehicles will be delivered to public transportation providers as well as nonprofit organizations serving seniors and individuals with disabilities.  Read more here.    A list of awardees is here.

Gubernatorial Appointments: Governor Pritzker appointed the following:

·      Beverly Potts will continue to serve as a Member of the Capital Development Board.

·      Shaneal Clayborne will serve as a Member of the Energy Workforce Advisory Council.

·      Eric Echevarria will serve as a Member of the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority.

·      Stephani Becker will serve as a Member of the Illinois Health Benefits Exchange Advisory Committee.

·      Lila Valinoti will serve as a Member of the Illinois Health Benefits Exchange Advisory Committee.

·      Raychel Wesley will serve as a Commissioner on the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission.

·      Esther Sciammarella will continue to serve as a Member of the State Board of Health.


Assault Weapons BanTwo gun rights organizations are asking the Supreme Court of the United States to review Illinois’ Assault Weapons Ban. The National Association for Gun Rights and the Firearms Policy Coalition both filed petitions Monday asking the court to reverse a decision of the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals. Read more here.

Migrant Update: On Thursday, Governor JB Pritzker and Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle pledged their commitment to a joint funding plan to ensure shelter, wraparound services and healthcare remain available for migrants sent from the Texas border. Officials estimate that an additional $321 million is needed to maintain shelter and services for 2024. Pritzker and Preckwinkle are pledging over $250 million to help close this gap; the allocation is on top of previously committed funding. Read more here.