June 20, 2021 Update

New Laws: Governor Pritzker signed the Budget implementation Act — SB 2017 (Harmon/Harris) which includes the statutory language necessary to implement the budget.   
Governor Pritzker signed HB 3922 (Ford/Lightford) which designates Juneteenth as an official state holiday. The Governor’s press release is here.   In honor of Juneteenth, Governor Pritzker closed all state offices on Friday, June 18th. 
Governor Pritzker also signed the omnibus election bill, SB 825 (Harmon/West). The bill makes several changes including moving the primary election to June 28, 2022. Other key provisions in the bill include:

  • Setting petition circulation to begin January 13
  • Establishing the petition filing period to be March 7 – 14
  • Directing that vote by mail ballots be available beginning March 30, with early voting to begin May 19
  • Making curbside voting permanent
  •  Allowing voters to be put on a list of individuals who wish to permanently vote by mail
  • Changing the process to fill a legislative vacancy so as to make the process more open to the public  
  • Allowing county sheriffs to set up ballot booths at county jails 
  • Creating a pilot program to allow election authorities to establish at least one location for anyone in the county or municipality to vote on election day
  • Establishing a process to allow the appointment of transgender persons to the Democratic State Central Committee 
  • Permitting elected officials to use campaign funds for vehicle-related expenditures, provided they are for primarily campaign of governmental duties  
  • Preventing units of local government from adopting measures that require General Assembly members to resign their offices in order to be eligible to win an office in the unit of local government

Executive Orders:
Executive Order 2021-13 extends the moratorium on evictions. 
Executive Order 2021-12   enacts Phase 5 of the Governor’s restore Illinois plan which transitions to a reopening in Illinois.
Deputy Governor:  Andy Manar will replace Dan Hynes as Deputy Governor for Budget and Economy.  
COVID Update: With new COVID infections continuing to decrease, the Illinois Department of Public Health announced it will now offer detailed COVID data every Friday insteading of releasing data daily. Illinois’ case positivity rate remains below 1%. 
Governor Pritzker announced a new $10 million ‘All In for the Win’ promotion that will reward vaccinated Illinoisans by automatically entering them into a series of cash and scholarship lotteries with prizes up to $1 million. All In for the Win offers $7 million in cash prizes to vaccinated adults, ranging from $100,000 to $1 million, and $3 million in scholarship awards to vaccinated youth, held in Bright Start 529 College Savings Plan. Residents who received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine in Illinois are automatically entered into the lotteries. After each draw, IDPH will reach out to the winners to ask for authorization to share their name and contact information with the Illinois Lottery.  

102nd GENERAL ASSEMBLY: The Illinois General Assembly reconvened last week in a special session. The Senate was in session on Tuesday; the House was in session on Wednesday. The Senate adjourned to the call of the President. The House adjourned to the call of the Speaker. Both chambers could return to session if and when a deal is reached on omnibus clean energy legislation. Faced with the challenge of getting members back to Springfield for a one-day session, the House made a temporary rule change to allow for remote voting for items pending before the full House. 

The Senate changed its operating rules to allow for remote voting in January.  Both chambers reconvened primarily to consider clean energy legislation — although an omnibus energy bill was not actually considered this week in either chamber. While an agreement appeared on track last week, it was sidelined as session grew near. 

Senator Cunningham testified before the Senate Energy and Public Utilities Committee that there is currently an agreement on a wide number of items including subsidies for Exelon; a new rate making system; the state’s investment in renewable energy (including equity provisions and labor standards); and ethics provisions. According to Cunningham, there is still no agreement on prevailing wage for renewable projects and a schedule for decarbonization. At present, there are two competing draft proposals — one supported by the Governor and the environmental community and another supported by the labor community. At this time, the work of the legislative working group has stalled as a result of this impasse. While energy legislation was off the table this week, the General Assembly did approve a handful of other items. Most importantly, both chambers approved clean up language to address drafting errors with the effective date provisions of the budget bill passed at the end of session. The Governor issued an amendatory veto to the budget bill SB 2800 (Harmon/Welch) to fix the drafting errors. The House and Senate approved the amendatory veto, thus allowing to take effect as intended the provisions of the operating budget, capital budget, and FY 21 supplemental.  

The House concurred with the Senate’s amendments to HB 562 (Hoffman/Koehler). The measure is an initiative of the Illinois State Police designed to modernize the FOID card process, make reforms to address the backlog in FOID and concealed card processing, and address perceived “loopholes” regarding the transfer of firearms. The bill does not include mandatory fingerprinting, but individuals who submit to voluntary fingerprinting will have the ability to get a non-expiring FOID card. HB 562 now heads to the Governor’s desk. 

Both chambers approved HB 1738 (Walsh/Hastings) which is a telecommunication sunset correction. The bill, as amended, fixes a drafting error in the telecom bill regarding the continuation of the Small Wireless Facilities Deployment Act. HB 1738 now heads to the Governor’s desk. 

 The Illinois House concurred with the Senate’s amendments to HB 1092 (Wang Stoneback/Gillespie). As amended, the bill makes changes to the Firearms Restraining Order (FRO), not only directing the Illinois Department of Public Health to promote public awareness of the FRO but also: creating a Commission on Implementing the FRO Act; requiring the Illinois Law Enforcement Training Standards Board to create and conduct an officer training on the FRO; clarifying which family members can request a FRO; and identifying the jurisdiction in which a petition for a FRO can be filed. HB 1092 now heads to the Governor’s desk. 

The Illinois House approved a bill, HB 2908 (Ramirez/Martwick), to provide for a transition to a fully elected 21-member Chicago School Board by the year 2026. Representative Ramirez noted she will be filing a trailer bill to address outstanding issues. She also filed a motion to reconsider the vote shortly after the bill’s passage — placing a procedural hold on the bill. Once that motion is removed, the bill will head to the Governor’s desk.  

 The House approved HB 2643 (Hoffman/Holmes), as amended, which represents an agreement by business and labor groups along with IDES, to fix the state’s unemployment system. The bill rolls five provisions into one bill. Note that the bill makes several administrative changes to IDES including allowing IDES to talk with legislative offices and requiring IDES to report certain information to the Illinois Department of Revenue with respect to fraudulent claims. The bill also temporarily extends benefits to certain non-instructional educational staff until such time as federal benefits end.  Tiffany Moy is the new Chief of Staff for the Office of the Speaker. Moy has served as the Issues Development Director since January and was the unit’s Deputy Director prior to that. 

COMING UP: The fall veto session is scheduled for October 19-21 and October 26-28.