June 1, 2024 Update


After working through the holiday weekend, the 103rd General Assembly adjourned its spring 2024 session until the call of the presiding officers. And while the General Assembly did not meet its target adjournment date of May 24, it did conclude its spring session in advance of its usual May 31 deadline.

Several bills were finalized this week including the FY 25 operating and capital budget; the FY 24 supplemental and omnibus packages on revenue, Medicaid, business incentives, and carbon capture; and reform measures concerning procurement and elections. The General Assembly did not act on omnibus legislation concerning gaming, cannabis, and hemp, a moratorium on Chicago school closures, or funding (or other legislative assistance) for new sports stadiums for the Chicago Bears, White Sox, or Sky teams.

In total, 465 bills passed both Chambers this year, including 207 House bills and 258 Senate bills. Four have already been signed into law by the Governor: HB 779 modernizes pawnbroker regulations; SB 15 finalizes the transition to a fully elected Chicago School Board; SB 2412 eliminates political party slating; and HB 4284 regarding Homewood School District PTELL .

Budget: The Fiscal Year 2025 Budget appropriates $53.74 billion in General Revenue funds ($124.6 billion All Funds) and assumes revenue streams of $53.281 billion — a boost over the current fiscal year of 1.6%, or $815 million. HB 4959 (Welch/Sims) provides the budget framework; see below. HB 4951 (Burke/Villanueva) lays out the omnibus revenue package, expected to generate in the next fiscal year $1.2 billion (a figure that, once tax credits and incentives are offset, is reduced to $746.5 million GRF/$119 million OSF).  The fiscal year starts July 1.

Under this budget configuration, Illinois is on track to make its full pension payment and allocate $198 million to the

Rainy Day Fund. Additionally, $182 million in monies is earmarked to accommodate the Governor’s request to address the migrant crisis. The Democrats cite the budget as “fair and balanced,” a plan that serves as “a reflection of our priorities.” 

Just some $73 million in cuts occurred in the budget, reflected in such areas as ending eligibility for cash assistance to migrants in shelters; reducing the community college PATH effort (which develops the healthcare workforce); and decreasing monies to the Department of Human Services (affecting both its operating and grant program funding).

Education: The Department of Early Childhood would be launched through a $14 million budget allocation, while an additional 5,000 slots in “preschool deserts” will be opened up via a $75 million appropriation to ISBE (for its Early Childhood Block Grant). Also included is $36.5 million to support expanded participation in The Child Care Assistance Program.

The evidence-based funding model for K – 12 education is on track for a $350 million boost – preserving the Governor’s introduced budget request – while other increases are slotted for the State Literacy Plan implementation ($3 million); mandated categoricals ($30 million); the Career and Technical Education program ($10.3 million); and the Teacher Vacancy Grant Pilot Program ($45 million).

MAP monies are earmarked at $700 million under the FY25 budget while the Minority Teacher Scholarship Program will be receiving $8 million.

Public Safety and Violence Prevention: Some 200 new troopers, in two new cadet classes, will be hired and trained through FY25 monies, while the Restore, Reinvest, and Renew Program is slated to get $200 million and $45 million is destined for the Reimagine Public Safety grant program. After-school and summer youth programs will receive $200 million And LETSB will receive $60 million in OSF for car and body worn cameras for law enforcement.

Health and Human Services: Highlights of human services funding including $290 million for HOME Illinois; $2.4 billion to assist people with developmental disabilities (including a $1/hour wage increase for Direct Support Professionals); $155 million for safety net hospitals; and $50 million for a child tax credit for eligible low-income families with EITC — a figure slated to double to $100 million in FY26. Both the HBIA and HBIS programs saw their funding levels retained at the Governor’s requested levels, and Community Care Program workers will have a $1/hour wage increase (underwritten by about $50 million in appropriations). Rounding out the budget numbers: increased funding to nursing homes targeted for property taxes; a $20 million boost to domestic violence programs; and a $40 million bump to rental assistance. The latter two figures are designed to help offset the loss of federal revenues. The final budget also includes $10 million for the new Medical Debt Relief Program.

The budgets passed the Senate 28-21 and the House 65-45 and now heads to the Governor’s desk.

Omnibus Revenue:  HB 4951(Burke/Villanueva) addresses new revenues to support the FY 25 spending plan. No new taxes on corporate or individual income are called for, with revenues instead being planned on from a handful of sources. Among them:

  • Boosting the sports betting tax and converting it to a graduated tax ($200 million)
  • Capping the retailers discount ($101 million)
  • Retaining the limit on the Corporate Net Operating Loss Deduction ($526 million)
  • Bolstering the video gaming tax ($35 million to support capacity in the capital program)
  • Imposing a tax for companies that re-rent large blocks of rental rooms ($25 million)

Also under HB 4951, interchange fees could not be assessed on sales taxes and gratuities. The provision – which does not bring in any new revenue for the state – was intended to appease the retail industry and any opposition it may have to the revenue package.  The measure also creates new tax credits and includes several changes and expansions to existing tax credits.

The measure passed the Senate 37-22 and the House concurred 60-47 and he bill now heads to the Governor’s desk.

Budget Implementation: The administration of the FY25 budget is laid out in HB 4959 (Welch/Sims), which passed the Senate 41-18 and the House 62-46 and now heads to the Governor’s desk. The bill:

  • Establishes the Department of Aging Federal and Direct Cost Fund
  • Codifies the DCEO Projects Fund
  • Grants authority to DCEO to give appropriations from the Clean Air Act Permit Fund in support of the Small Business Environmental Regulatory Assistance Program
  • Permits EPA to spend from the Energy Efficiency Trust Fund for administrative costs
  • Details how proceeds are to be dispersed from the Illinois DREAM scratch-off lottery
  • Permits IDOT to use the road fund to pay any past transparent transit grants for the RTA reduced fare subsidy grants and Amtrak subsidies
  • Authorizes the summer EBT program fund — and allows the federally funded program to be operated by the Department of Human Services
  • Allows the funding of prompt payment interest by IDOT
  • Establishes authority for the comptroller – whenever additional cash is on hand in a month – to front-load pension payments
  • Directs the Attorney General to compile a semi-annual report on collection of estate taxes and submit it to the Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability
  • Imposes on GOMB new monthly reporting requirements

·       Creates the Professional Licensure Fund for IDFPR to utilize for its electronic licensure project

·       Continues to allow personal property replacement tax fund money to be used for the Illinois Community College Board base operating grants

·       Authorizes the Board of Higher Education to make grants to public universities to support implementation of the Mental Health Early Action on Campus Act

·       Allows grant money involved in the law enforcement camera program to be used for the leasing (in addition to purchasing) of cameras

·       Transfers $20 million from the Capital Projects Fund to the Illinois Works Fund to support the Illinois Works Pre-Apprenticeship Program at DECO.

·       Requires TRS to offer retired teachers vision and dental insurance starting July 1.

·       Allows downstate and Chicago retired teachers to return to work without affecting their pensions

·       Allows the University of Illinois, Springfield to build a downtown campus.

·       Establishes a grant program to provide up to $7,000 per school site to initiate a breakfast after-the-bell program

·       Creates new pre-trial success grants

Capital Budget: SB 251 (Sims/Gordon-Booth) also includes $3.5 billion in capital appropriations and reappropriations ($500 million more than the Governor’s introduced budget). Included in the plan is $500 million for quantum computing, $900 million for reconstruction of Logan and Stateville prisons, and $400 million dedicated for local road projects.

Bond AuthorizationHB 4582 (Crespo/Harmon)  creates the Bond Authorization Act of 2024. It authorizes $7.988 billion in new bonding authority ($1 billion in Build Illinois and $2 billion in General Obligation bonds) for capital improvements and development to address the deferred maintenance at the state prisons, colleges, and other state facilities as well as bonding for a new quantum campus. The bill also authorizes the Housing Development Authority to issue 4.3 billion in bonds to help address the growing demand for its single-family mortgage program. Also included: procedural changes to help school districts utilize bonding authority. The legislation passed the Senate 40-18 and the House 72-38 and now heads to the Governor’s desk.

Local Government Tax Omnibus: Provisions contained In HB 3144 (Burke/Castro) address an array of local government tax issues. The measure ends (as of January 1, 2026) the state-imposed 1% sales tax on groceries but allows all municipalities to impose their own grocery taxes up to 1%. Under the bill, such a move can be done without a referendum or without requiring state administrative fees. The legislation also permits home rule municipalities to boost sales taxes by 1%. The bill also increases the prepaid wireless 911 surcharge (for municipalities with a population over 500,000) from 3% per retail transaction to 9% per retail transaction and allows the prepaid wireless telecommunications service charge to be applied to prepaid service — rather than to just wireless cards.  The measure also allows Sangamon County by ordinance to impose up to a 3% tax on renting, leasing, or letting rooms in hotels countywide. Revenues would go to “promoting tourism, competitiveness, and job growth as well as covering debts on bonds. The legislation passed the Senate by a vote of 48-11. The House concurred by a vote of 86-20. The bill now heads to the Governor’s desk.

Medicaid/Healthcare OmnibusSB 3268 (Aquino/Gabel) represents the 2024 Medicaid and healthcare omnibus. The legislation is primarily the byproduct of the bipartisan bicameral Medicaid Working Group (except for the test and treat language regarding pharmacists). Among other aspects, the bill: authorizes various rate increases including psychiatrists, prosthetics, dialysis, children’s health centers, birthing centers, dentists and others; adds a low volume adjustment for safety net hospitals; places the University of Illinois Chicago Hospital (which recently became a safety net hospital) in the acute pool for assessment purposes, rather than the safety net pool; increases the monthly personal needs allowance for supportive living residents; eliminates prior authorization for adults on Medicaid with serious mental health; creates a gold card for physicians and a new stabilization window to streamline prior authorization for emergency services; creates new transparency requirements for PBMs; expands pharmacists’ allowable activities in Illinois (allows pharmacists to test for RSV, Group A strep, SARS COV2, head lice, and influenza). The legislation passed the House by a vote of 98-6; the Senate unanimously concurred; and the Governor will now consider the measure.

Business Incentive PackageHB 5005 (Vella/Stadleman), as amended by SFA#2, represents an omnibus tax incentive package designed to position Illinois to be more competitive for jobs and capital investment. Projects created under the legislation are expected to generate $21 billion in new revenue over the next 30 years. Highlights of the bill include: creating a Quantum Computing Campus; and extending by five years the Research and Development Tax Credit. The bill also includes changes to the High Impact Business designation, altering the Rivers Edge Development Zone Act (including adding seven more River Edge Zones downstate), and adjusting the EDGE, REV, and Micro acts. The bill also offers incentives to support new industries like sustainable aviation fuel, green steel, and the manufacturing of other electric aircraft components. The measure passed the Senate 51 – 5 and the House concurred by a vote of 90-19 and now heads to the Governor’s desk.

Election OmnibusHB 4488 (West/Morrison) represents the 2024 election omnibus. The legislation makes several changes including codifying certain COVID practices including delivering vote-by-mail ballots to nursing homes and veterans homes; tightening the rules on the prohibited contributions (and imposing a penalty of 150% of the received contributions after 30 days); accommodating park district programming when districts are asked to serve as a polling place; prohibiting “pink slime” websites from publishing detailed voter information (including birth dates and full street addresses); providing greater security/privacy for election judges by changing how their badges are used; removing the primary campaign contribution limits on political party accounts (including legislative caucus committees); tightening the rules on the prohibited contributions; and removing outdated sections of the election code. HB 4488 passed the Senate by a vote of 51-3-3 and the House concurred 68-38. The bill now heads to the Governor’s desk.

Procurement OmnibusHB 5511 (Hoffman/Castro) is the 2024 Procurement Omnibus, which consists of various legislative measures filed during the 2024 spring session. Key provisions include: authorizes the Capital Development Board to use progressive design build delivery method for up to three public projects prior to January 1, 2027; clarifies the job order contracting process under the code while remaining consistent with the current statutory procurement process (to which Illinois contractors and design professionals are custom); provides the option to cure procurement violations and deficiencies such that procurement can proceed upon remedying the violation or deficiency; authorizes DNR to install EV charging stations, commercial solar energy systems and other clean energy projects at properties within its jurisdiction; makes it easier for local units of government to purchase or lease supplies under state Joint Purchasing Agreements; exempts expenditures to support state hiring efforts and makes changes to the Illinois business bid preference provisions to expand which Illinois-based entities are to be considered Illinois businesses; establishes uniform BEP contract goals; clarifies that the Commission on Equity and Inclusion will supervise rather than oversee the implementation and effectiveness of supplier diversity training of state procurement workforce; expands the Illinois Public Private Partnership program to allow for entities to solicit P3 proposals in Illinois’ five most populous counties; creates a mid-sized business category for Illinois Tollway procurements, to account for certain businesses that exceed the small business; and makes changes to the small business set-asides in the Tollway. The measure passed the Senate 48-7-1 and the House concurred 80-27. The measure now heads to the Governor’s desk.

Cannabis Omnibus: Efforts to pass a cannabis omnibus passed the Senate 55-1, but did not move in the House in the final days of session. HB 2911 (Ford/Lightford), as amended, represents an omnibus cannabis package. Key provisions include: expanding craft growers to 14,000 square feet; creating a new consolidated transport center license; requiring the Department of Agriculture to maintain a list of  dispensing organizations with non-payment for goods or services (similar to the non-payment list in the Liquor Control Act); updating the medical use, cultivation privilege tax section; allowing medical patients to be prescribed medical cannabis via telehealth; removing the list of excluded offenses that prohibit someone from working in a medical cannabis facility;  allowing curbside pickup and drive through windows at all dispensaries; expanding the allowable HVAC equipment requirements; providing DOA and IDFPR the authority to unify the employee badging system; allowing DCEO to use a lottery to award social equity grants and loans; establishing standard market protections against unfair business practices; removing a duplicate labor requirement; and cleaning up DOR tax language. 

Gaming Omnibus: A gaming omnibus bill stalled in the final days of session. The House Executive Committee unanimously approved HFA # 1 to SB 327 (Cunningham/Didech) which represents the 2024 gaming omnibus. The bill incorporates provisions from five bills considered during the spring session as follows:  (1) contains the lottery omnibus; (2) includes racing board clean-up language; (3) codifies the ability of DHS to use its state gaming fund revenue to support problem gaming programs; (4) requires outdoor signage that promotes video gaming operations to be affixed to a building or a permanent sign; and(5) enacts the Family Amusement Wagering Prohibition Act which prohibits real money wagering on arcade games, but does not prohibit traditional tournament style contests currently offered (like darts and billiards). This last provision of the bill targets entities like Dave and Buster’s, which intend to allow for wagering on family arcade games. The bill is now pending before the full House.

Carbon Capture/Sequestration: As amended, SB 1289 (Fine/Williams) represents an agreement between business, labor, and environmental groups on state-level carbon capture and sequestration regulations. The bill enacts a moratorium on new pipelines until the federal Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration adopts final revisions to its pipeline safety rules or until after July 1, 2026. The measure further outlines rules for ownership, damage compensation, and rights related to pore space, and mandates emergency services personnel receive training and support for incidents involving carbon dioxide pipelines and storage. The bill also specifies conditions under which the Illinois Commerce Commission may authorize carbon dioxide pipeline construction and operation including comprehensive public engagement, emergency planning, and adherence to federal safety rules. The bill also allows the ICC to set fees for pipeline operators and updates the Environmental Protection Act to regulate carbon dioxide injection and storage. The House sponsor testified that this legislation represents the strongest regulations in the country and makes Illinois one of the only states to require a federal and a state permit. The Farm Bureau and Soybean Association remain opposed to the legislation, arguing that it does not contain enough protection for landowners. Several legislators criticized the bill for not providing more protections for the Mahomet Aquifer. The bill passed the House by a vote of 78-29-9 and the Senate concurred by a vote of 43-12-2. The bill now heads to the Governor’s desk.

Hemp Regulation: Efforts to regulate the hemp industry ramped up during the final weeks of session. While various iterations were introduced, HB 4293 (Buckner/Lightford) became the final Senate vehicle. As amended, the legislation enacts a framework to regulate hemp-derived THC, including delta-8 products. According to Senator Lightford, regulation of hemp-derived THC products would largely mirror the state’s treatment of cannabis with respect to taxing, testing, possession limits and more. The legislation creates regulations for hemp processors and craft growers, so consumers know the actual contents of these products. Only licensed dispensaries would be permitted to sell hemp-derived THC products. Certain retailers and manufacturers licensed under the Liquor Control Act will be allowed to sell beverages derived from hemp until January 20, 2025.  The bill allows social equity craft growers and infusers to process hemp by extracting the naturally occurring chemicals into concentrates. Beginning July 1, all products made by a hemp processor must be sold to either a social equity craft grower or infuser for sale to a dispensary.  The bill passed the Senate 54-1 but was not considered by the House prior to adjournment.  

Worker’s CompensationSB 1996 (Cunningham/Hoffman), as amended, addresses the current shortfall in funding at the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission and makes changes to address work comp fraud. The legislation – a byproduct of the bicameral bipartisan agreed bill process between labor and business – authorizes a one-year premium increase to cover the shortfall.  The bill also gives $2 million in transfer authority to the director of the Commission (monies would have to be repaid if transferred).   Discussions will continue in January 2025 to identify a more sustainable and permanent fix to fund the Commission. Having passed the House 79-29 and the Senate 44-14, the bill now heads to the Governor’s desk.

Medical DebtHB 5290 (Cassidy/Simmons), an initiative of Governor Pritzker, creates the Medical Debt Relief Pilot Program to alleviate medical debt for Illinois families. To qualify for the program, individuals must have a household income below 400% of the Federal Poverty Level and have medical debt amounting to 5% or more of their household income. Requires HFS to review and award relief to qualified applicants for assistance. The legislation mandates annual reports on the program’s progress and outcomes.  The FY 25 budget includes $10 million for this program which should provide $100 million in debt relief. The measure passed the Senate 38-19 and the House concurred 73-36. The bill now heads to the Governor’s Desk.

Health Insurance Reforms: Governor Pritzker called for reforms to the health Insurance industry during his February Budget Address. The result was HB 5395 (Moeller/Peters), creating the Health Care Protection Act. The measure: bans step therapy for prescription medications; prohibits prior authorization for in-patient mental health care in a hospital setting; creates statewide standards on clinical criteria when performing utilization reviews; requires insurers to publicly list all treatments that require prior authorization; addresses “ghost networks”; and establishes rate reviews for large group health plans. The bill passed the Senate 45-14 and the House concurred with the Senate’s changes by a vote of 83-23-1. The measure now heads to the Governor’s desk. Read more here.  

Another reform measure, HB 2499 (Morgan/Fine), bans short term limited duration health plans. The bill passed the Senate 40-19, with the House concurring 72-35 with the Senate’s amendments. The Governor will now consider the legislation.

A third bill, SB 2641 (Holmes/Manley), addresses in-network hospital adequacy with respect to hospital specialists (like radiologists, pathologists, etc).  The measure passed the House unanimously and the Senate unanimously concurred with House changes. The bill now heads to the Governor’s desk.

Birth Equity Initiative: As amended, HB 5142 (Gabel/Collins) represents the Governor’s Birth Equity Initiative. Specifically, the legislation requires private insurers to cover all pregnancy, postpartum, and newborn care provided by perinatal doulas or licensed certified professional midwives — including home births, home visits, and support during labor. Insurance companies would need to cover home visits by board-certified lactation consultants, including the cost of recommended breast pumps, breastfeeding supplies, and feeding aids. The measure would also provide coverage for abortion care without cost-sharing limitations (like waiting periods or deductibles) and aims to add coverage for certified professional midwife services for residents with Medicaid starting January 1, 2025. To keep consumer costs from inflating, the legislation allows policy limits to cover up to $8,000 for home visits by a perinatal doula. HB 5142 passed the Senate by a vote of 40-19. The House concurred with the Senate’s changes by a vote of 70-35 and the bill now heads to the Governor’s desk.

Children’s Behavioral Health Transformation InitiativeSB 726 (Feigenholtz/LaPointe), an initiative of the Chief Children’s Behavioral Health Officer, directs ISBE to assess school districts’ readiness to conduct universal mental health screenings in public K-12 schools. In addition, in order to identify leading indicators for youth who are approaching a behavioral health crisis, HFS is directed to work with child-serving state agencies and Medicaid managed care organizations. The legislation also repeals the program for wellness checks in school and moves the children’s mental health partnership work to the Illinois Department of Public Health (it had been at Lurie Children’s Hospital). Finally, the legislation creates a pilot program of personal support workers for in-home respite care for youth. SB 726 passed the House 80-31-1 and now heads to the Governor’s desk.

Sunset Extension OmnibusHB 4615 (Walsh/Hastings) is the 2024 sunset extension bill. The legislation: (1) gives the Department of Professional Regulation the authority to extend professional licenses to address the backlog from December 8, 2024 to January 1, 2026 — as well as associated emergency rulemaking authority until August 4, 2025; (2) accommodates OSLAD grant recipients that were unable to meet project timelines through COVID by extending until July 1, 2025 their eligibility under the grant Funds Recovery Act (deadline had been July 31,2024); (3) extends the cable and telecommunications sunsets from December 31, 2024 to January 1, 2030; (4) extends the small cell wireless facility sunset from December 31,  2024 to January 1, 2030 and enables units of local government to impose application fees consistent with federal guidance; (5) extends the sunset for school interfund transfers from June 30, 2024 to June 30, 2026; and (6) extends the DuPage County Municipal Hotel Operators and Use taxes from January 1, 2025 to January 1. 2027. The bill passed both chambers unanimously. The measure now heads to the Governor’s desk.

Artificial Intelligence: While the General Assembly contemplated several bills dealing with AI during the 2024 spring session, only a handful passed. 

The House concurred, by a vote of 100-15, with SFA # 3 to HB 3773 (Andrade/Cervantes) to limit the use of predictive analytics in employment decisions. The bill now heads to the Governor’s desk.

HB 4875 (Gong-Gershowitz/Edly-Allen) intends to modernize the Illinois Publicity Act to address the use of artificial intelligence in distributing or transmitting a sound recording or audiovisual work that contains a digital replica of an individual without their knowledge or authorization. The House unanimously concurred with the Senate’s changes and the bill now heads to the Governor’s desk.

Another bill, HB 4762 (Gong-Gershowitz/Edly-Allen), creates the Digital Voice and Likeness Protection Act. The House concurred unanimously and the bill now heads to the Governor’s desk.

HB 4623 (Gong-Gershowitz/Edly-Allen) addresses the use of AI-generated pornography. An initiative of the Attorney General, the bill passed the Senate unanimously and now heads to the Governor’s desk.

Prisoner Review Board ReformsHB 681 (Cassidy/Harmon) enacts reforms for the Prisoner Review Board, particularly concerning the handling of cases of domestic violence. The legislation focuses on notice, transparency, and training for Board members as well as creating a Prisoner Review Board Task Force. The bill passed the Senate unanimously and the House Judiciary approved the motion to concur unanimously, but the full House did not vote on the measure before adjourning.  Read more here.

Fantasy Sports: Representative Delgado filed HFA # 2 to HB 394 (Didech) to create the Fantasy Sports Consumer Protection Act, directing the Illinois Gaming Board to regulate, license, and tax fantasy sports operators. The bill limits participation in fantasy sports to those over the age of 19. In addition, the Gaming Board would have emergency rulemaking powers and operators must submit supplier diversity reports. HFA # 2 passed the House Gaming Committee by a vote of 10-5 but was not called for a final vote prior to adjournment. 

Chicago Public Schools: Efforts to prevent the Chicago Public School Board from closing any schools or making major changes to selective enrollment programs until a fully elected school is in place in 2027 stalled in the Illinois Senate. Although HB 303 (Croke/Harmon) passed the House in April and unanimously passed the Senate Executive Committee, it was not called for a final vote in the Senate. Mayor Johnson sent President Harmon a letter this week promising that CPS “will not close selective enrollment schools nor will the District make disproportionate budget cuts to selective enrollment schools. The District will maintain admissions standards at selective enrollment schools.” Read more here.

Halal/Kosher FoodSB 457 (Villivalam/Olickal) is the revised Halal/Kosher food legislation which was approved by the Senate during veto session in response to the Governor’s veto of a previous version of the bill on HB 3643 (Rashid/Villivalam). SB 457 requires the State Board of Education to enter into one or more statewide master contracts to purchase religious dietary food options. Also, subject to appropriation, SBE is to notify school districts of any prepackaged meal options, including halal and kosher food options, available for purchase under a statewide master contract for the upcoming school year. The bill requires the University of Illinois Hospital to offer religious dietary food options that comply with federal and State nutritional guidelines. In addition, the Halal Food Act and the Kosher Food Act are amended such that any halal food or kosher product offered by a State-owned or State-operated facility be purchased from a halal-certified or kosher-certified vendor. Establishes penalties for violations. Requires any Corrections facility with food services or cafeteria services for which food products are provided or sold to also offer religious dietary food options that comply with federal and State nutritional guidelines. The measure, which passed the House State Government Committee by a vote of 6-2, was not considered by the full House prior to adjourning.  

Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation: Two bills dealing with the Prairie Band Potawatomi Tribe were contemplated in the final days of session neither of which advanced to the Governor’s desk. The Senate approved, by a vote of 49-7, SB 867 (Walker/Welch) which would help the tribe expand its newly established reservation in DeKalb County. Specifically, the state would relinquish the Shabbona Lake and State Park to the tribe for $1. In addition, the tribe and the Department of Natural Resources could enter into a land management agreement allowing the land to remain open to public recreational use for an unspecified period. The bill advanced out of the House Executive Committee by a vote of 8-4 but was not considered by the full House prior to adjournment. The House Executive Committee also approved, by a vote of 8 – 4, HB 4718 (Guzzardi) which is now pending before the full House.

Automatic Voter Registration: As amended, SB 496 (Villivalam/Welch) is an initiative of the Secretary of State to both streamline automatic voter registration and expand the roster of persons to be automatically registered by the SOS (and existing automatic voter registration agencies).   Under the bill, anyone applying for a REAL ID or traditional driver’s licenses who provides documentation of citizenship will automatically be registered to vote or have their voter’s registration updated. The bill passed the Senate by a vote of 40-19 and now heads to the House.

Sexual Abuse ReportingHB 3521 (Cassidy/Villa), as amended, requires hospital affiliates to report suspected abuse of a patient at hospitals and facilities operated by a hospital affiliate (like doctors’ offices and clinics). The measure would also explicitly prohibit employees of hospital affiliates from abusing patients including medical staff, administrators, agents or other employees. Under the initiative, hospital affiliates would be subjected to the same reporting guidelines as hospitals. The Illinois Department of Public Health would have to investigate abuse in facilities operated by hospital affiliates. The measure passed the Senate unanimously. 

Bills That Passed Both Houses: Below are highlights of bills that passed both houses. The measures are now heading to the Governor’s desk.

·       HB 581 (Avelar/Villanueva) codifies the federal Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTLA) in Illinois (even if it is overturned by the US Supreme Court) and ensures that the status quo is maintained in Illinois. The sponsor stated that the intent is to be certain that an abortion is provided if it is a necessary stabilizing treatment. Opponents argue the legislation goes beyond the current federal EMTLA provisions.

·       HB 4867 (Moeller/Fine) grants Illinoisans the freedom to consider whatever reproductive health decisions they wish without fear of discrimination or retaliation in the context of employment, housing, public accommodations, education, and financial credit.

·       SB 2764 (Turner/Gill) addresses automatic renewal on free trial or promotional services.

·       SB 2662 (Morrison/Lilly) prohibits the advertising, marketing, or promoting of an e-cigarette in a way that is likely to cause someone to mistake it for an object that is not a tobacco product. 

·       SB 3649 (Peters/Evans) creates the Worker Freedom of Speech Act which prohibits employers from requiring employees to attend work-related meetings about politics or religion. The bill is an initiative of the Illinois AFL-CIO.

·       SB 2770 (Hastings/Evans) bans non-competes in the construction industry.

·       SB 2876 (Villa/Tarver) requires certain large event facilities that receive state funding to participate in recycling programs. The bill, effective January 1, 2025, specifically excludes school stadiums, hotels and county fairs. 

·       SB 3455  (Martwick/Canty) directs the Department of Revenue and the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity to conduct a study of the state’s property tax system. 

·       SB 692 (Morrison/Morgan) creates a Task Force on Interjurisdictional Industrial Zoning Impacts to study State and local zoning laws and policies related to large industrial developments.

·       SB 2643 (Turner/Gill) tightens identification standards for human remains that are being handled by funeral homes and enhances punishment for businesses that violate the law. 

·       SB 3314 (Cunningham/Tarver) allows for the refinancing of consumer legal funding. 

·       SB 2960 (Fine/Buckner) creates the Small Single-Use Plastic Bottle Act which bans hotels from using single-use plastic bottles containing personal care products.

·       SB 3173 (DeWitte/Moeller) allows a county to lease, license, or otherwise grant access to and use of infrastructure that the county owns or controls to public or private entities to facilitate the delivery of broadband services.

·       SB 3481(Feigenholtz/Moeller) requires facilities that store electric vehicle batteries to register with the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency by February 2026. In addition, the Pollution Control Board is to establish rules for the proper storage of EV batteries. 

·       SB 3597 (Ventura/Gabel) creates the Climate Bank Loan Financing Act, allowing local governments to apply for loans through the Illinois Finance Authority Climate Bank to expand clean energy infrastructure across the state.

·       SB 3686 (Koehler/Chung) creates the Portable Battery Stewardship Act which requires businesses that sell or distribute batteries to develop a small to medium-sized battery recycling stewardship program by 2026. 

·       SB 2933 (Stadelman/West) prohibits a consumer reporting agency from making a credit report containing any adverse information about the consumer’s medical debt.

·       HB 4175 (Croke/Johnson) prohibits corporal punishment in private schools.

·       HB 4768 (Guzzardi/Villa) protects tenants from different forms of landlord retaliation.

·       SB 3412 (Ellman/Croke) creates the Uniform Money Transmission Modernization Act. 

·       SB 2743 (Ellman/Williams) creates the State Water Plan Task Force to identify critical water issues, develop and implement recommendations that address critical water issues, and reevaluate critical water issues and needs. Further requires the Task Force to publish a State Water Plan every 10 years.  

·       HB 4226 (Tarver/Harmon) clarifies the process created in P.A. 102-1126 with respect to certain judicial vacancies and the conversion to associate judgeships or resident circuit judgeships.

·       HB 4895 (Yang Rohr/Johnson) requires all public schools to provide education on the impacts of climate change and solutions for mitigation.

·       HB 4261 (Stuart/Hunter) extends the deadlines of various task forces.

·       HB 5324 (Hoffman/Aquino) sets goals to resolve cases pending before the Public Labor Relations Board and the Education Labor Relations Board. The sponsor noted that he believes both boards are taking too long to resolve cases.

·       HB 4592 (Buckner/Hastings) is an initiative of the Secretary of State, allowing that office

to issue a mobile Illinois Identification Card or mobile driver’s license. Digital IDs and licenses would be optional, and the physical forms would still be mandatory.

·       SB 1779 (Turner/Morris) implements a medication aide program to certify CNAs as medication aides. Certification would be confirmed on CNAs completing 60 hours in the classroom, 10 hours of lab simulation, and 30 hours of clinical supervision.

·       SB 774 (Feigenholtz/Gabel) requires IDPH to propose (within 180 days) rules to implement a Certified Medication Aide Program. Further requires HFS, subject to federal approval, to allow a certified medication aide to administer medication in a supportive living facility. The measure passed the House unanimously and heads back to the Senate for concurrence.

·       SB 3563 (Curran/Yednock) is an omnibus TIF extension bill.

·       HB 4621 (Slaughter/Sims) establishes the Office of Statewide Pretrial Services. Read more here.


Healthcare Transformation Capital Investment Grant: Supporting capital projects that deal with health-related social needs and reduce healthcare disparities in underserved areas is the goal of the Healthcare Transformation Capital Investment Grant (HTCIG) program. A Notice of Funding Opportunity has been announced for the HTCIG through the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services and the Illinois Capital Development Board.

In part, the HTCIG effort will key in on some of the infrastructure needs of projects funded through the Healthcare Transformation Collaboratives program. Through it, state funding is awarded to partnerships between healthcare providers and community organizations — partnerships dedicated to ensuring that the communities they serve have access to quality healthcare. However, participation in a Healthcare Transformation Collaborative is not a pre-requisite for applying for the capital funds of the HTCIG program.

 In awarding the monies, priority will be assigned to safety net hospitals (especially those in a Healthcare Transformation Collaborative). Other top-tier contenders for HTCIG funding: critical access hospitals and projects in communities with significant health disparities and insufficient health resources. HTCIG applications are due by July 1. Read more here.

IDPH Warns of Rabies Cases: Two rabid bats were recently identified in Cook and Will counties, causing IDPH to issue alerts about the discovery. The bats were recovered inside two homes in those counties and subsequently tested positive for rabies. Read more here.

Capital Development Board: The Illinois Capital Development Board appointed Tamakia “TJ” Edwards to serve as the agency’s next Executive Director. Edwards currently works as the Chief Strategy Officer at Comprehensive Construction Consulting Inc. and previously served as the Chief of Staff for the CDB from 2020 to 2023.


Office of The Comptroller Warns Vendors of Scam: Fraudulent emails requesting an update on banking info have been received by various vendors, prompting a warning from the Illinois Comptroller. The bogus communication – which the Comptroller says is a phishing scam targeting vendors that receive payments from her office – asks for sensitive bank account information. The Comptroller reminds vendors and the general public that such emails and requests would never be sent from the office.