New Laws: The Governor approved the legislation passed during last week’s session.
· HB 3512 (Slaughter/Sims) which is a second trailer bill to the Illinois Legislative Black Caucus criminal justice pillar – the SAFE-T Act. This trailer addresses provisions of the underlying bill that were scheduled to take effect January 1, 2022. Changes are made to pretrial services, body camera, detaining phone calls and recertification of officers’ provisions.
· HB1953 (Stuart/Morrison) which contains election code cleanup and clarifications for this election cycle.
·HB3138 (Harmon/Hernandez) redraws judicial subcircuits in Cook, Kane, McHenry and Will counties. Increases the number of subcircuits in Cook County to 20 from 15. Increases the number of subcircuits in Lake County from 5 to 12. Consolidates four subcircuits into two in the 17th Circuit, which encompasses Winnebago and Boone counties. Creates subcircuits in DuPage County. Establishes a resident judge model in Champaign, Peoria, and Rock Island counties. Makes similar changes for the 3rd Circuit, which includes Madison and Bond counties, and the 7th Circuit, which includes Sangamon County and five surrounding counties. View the districts here. The proposed drawing of subcircuits will not impact the tenure of current circuit court judges.
Executive Order:Executive Order 2022-01 reissues several executive orders, extending a majority of the provisions through February 5, 2022.
Executive Order 2022-02 establishes the Illinois Joint Analysis Center, to protect the people of Illinois by providing an information sharing network designed to gather, analyze, and disseminate cyber analysis and information.
Executive Order 2022-03 addresses school response to COVID-19. Under the new order, schools must take specific measures to ensure the safety of students and schools, including investigating the occurrence of cases, close contacts, and symptomatic individuals. All schools must make remote instruction available. This Executive Order supersedes EO 2021-24 and EO 2021-25.
Executive Order 2022-04 reissues several executive orders, extending the provisions through February 5, 2022.
COVID-19 Update: New cases of COVID-19 and hospitalizations from the virus continue to reach pandemic highs. Illinois recorded 144 new deaths from the virus on Wednesday, which is the highest single day deaths from the virus in over a year. Staffing shortages are a problem in all sectors including healthcare, education and other businesses. Several school districts throughout Illinois pivoted to remote learning this week due to staffing shortages. A deal was reached this week between the Chicago Public Schools and the Chicago Teachers Union to return students to in-person learning.
As hospitalizations for COVID-19 reach pandemic highs, Governor Pritzker deployed more than 2,000 healthcare workers across the state to help hospitals hardest hit by the influx of patients from COVID. There are 919 workers already on-site supporting hospitals hit hard by COVID. Another 552 health care staff will arrive at hospitals by next Friday. And finally, another 577 are part of “reaction teams” that will respond quickly to overwhelmed hospitals this week and next. The governor also said the state would help hospitals apply for federal help through FEMA.
Pritzker also said health workers from out of state will continue to be allowed to work in Illinois hospitals. The state is also making other allowances to offer assistance to burden healthcare systems, including allowing doctors who received medical training in another country will be allowed to provide assistance to licensed physicians. And out-of-state physicians, nurses and mental-health providers will be allowed to perform telehealth services if there is a pre-existing relationship between the provider and the patient.
On Thursday, the Illinois Department of Public Health reported 37,048 new cases of COVID 19 and 142 new deaths from the virus. As of Wednesday night, 7,380 individuals in Illinois were hospitalized with COVID-19 which set another record high. Of those 1,177 are in the ICU and 670 are on ventilators.
The Illinois Department of Corrections announced it is temporarily pausing intakes from county jails as it responds to COVID-19 outbreaks at correctional facilities. Facilities impacted include the Graham, Logan, Menard and Northern Reception and Classification Centers.
Do to continued high COVID-19 transmission rates, Secretary of State Jesse White will keep his offices closed for an additional week. Offices were originally scheduled to reopen on January 18th. They will now reopen on January 24th.
Comptroller Mendoza announced that as the COVID-19 Pandemic continues “to wreak havoc on Illinoisans’ health and livelihoods, her office is extending for a second year the policy of not withholding unpaid fines from the state tax returns of low- and moderate-income taxpayers”.Illinois adopted CDC guidance for schools, reducing quarantine time from 10 to five days. See Executive Order 2022-3 above.
Gubernatorial Appointments: The Governor made the following appointments:
· Mark Donovan will serve as a Member of the State Employees’ Retirement System Board of Trustees.·
Carrie Ward will serve as a Member of the Illinois Forensic Science Commission.·
Ann McCabe will serve as a Commissioner of the Illinois Commerce Commission.
2022 ELECTION UPDATE:
Petition circulation for the 2022 election cycle is now underway. Several candidates announced their intentions this week.
Republican gubernatorial candidate Paul Schimpf named McHenry County Board member Carolyn Schofield as his Lieutenant Governor running mate.
Republican Steve Kim is seeking the Republican nomination to challenge Democratic Attorney General Kwame Raoul. Kim previously ran against former Attorney general Lisa Madigan.
McHenry County Auditor Shannon Teresi is seeking the Republican nomination for Comptroller to challenge Comptroller Susana Mendoza.
Republican State Representative Tom Demmer announced he is running for State Treasurer to challenge Treasurer Michael Frerichs.
Democrat Karin Norington-Reaves, CEO of the Chicago Cook Workforce Partnership, announced her bid for the open 1st Congressional District.
Republican State Representative Tim Butler announced he will seek reelection in the newly drawn 95th House District.Representative Mark Walker is seeking reelection in the 53rd House District.
Republican State Representative Tony McCombine is running for reelection in the 89th House District.
Democrat State Representative Deb Conroy is running for chair of the DuPage County Board instead of seeking reelection to the House.
Republican Representative Norine Hammond is seeking re-election in the newly drawn 95th House District.Hoan Hunh is seeking election for the open 13th House District.
Republican State Representative Joe Sosnowski is seeking reelection in the 69th District.
In the 105th House District, former La Salle County State’s Attorney Karen Donnelly and Livingston County Board Member Mike Kirkton are both seeking the Republican nomination to replace State Representative Dan Brady who is running for Secretary of State.
Democrat Lilian Jiménez is seeking election to the 4th House District being vacated by Representative Delia Ramirez, who is running for Congress.
102nd GENERAL ASSEMBLY:
Committee work began virtually this week following the cancellation of in-person session. A handful of committees met this week to consider pending legislation. Work at the committee level will intensify as more legislation is filed and assigned to committees. Committee work is expected to continue virtually for the foreseeable future.
Several committees in both the House and the Senate are scheduled to meet virtually next week. In-person session for next week (January 18th-20th) is also canceled.
Note that the deadline to file a request for bill drafting is January 14th in the House. The deadline to file substantive legislation is January 21st in the Senate and January 28th in the House.