New Laws: Governor Pritzker signed SB 89, extending Illinois’ cocktails to-go law until August 1, 2028. The law – first enacted during the pandemic – allows restaurants and bars to provide carryout, curbside pickup, and delivery of mixed drinks and single servings of wine for off-premises consumption.
Health Benefits for Immigrants: The Illinois Department pf Healthcare and Family Services filed emergency and regular rules for the Health Benefits for Immigrant Adults (HBIA) and Health Benefits for Immigrant Seniors (HBIS) programs.
Public Act 103-0102 – the Medicaid Omnibus package – authorizes HFS to ensure the HBIA and HBIS programs do not exceed the funds available and appropriated by the General Assembly for FY24.
HFS is implementing several cost containment measures, beginning July 1, including: pausing new enrollment for those aged 42-64; establishing co-pays; implementing managed care; clawing back some over-payments to the Cook County Hospital System and limiting or eliminating backdated medical coverage. HBIS enrollment will remain open but will be paused in FY if the number of individuals enrolled exceeds 16,500.
The Health Illinois Campaign issued a statement which “strongly condemns the decision and calls on Governor Pritzker to reverse his decision immediately and work in good faith with advocates and members of the Illinois General Assembly to ensure that healthcare truly is a right, not a privilege in our state”. The Latino Caucus called the announcement “disappointing”. Advocates continue to pressure the administration to reverse the decision.
Draft Statewide Literacy Plan: The Illinois State Board of Education issued a draft of the Statewide Literacy Plan. Read the draft here.
Gubernatorial Appointments: Governor Pritzker appointed the following:
· Jonathan Carson will serve as a Member of the Energy Workforce Advisory Council.
· David Katz will serve as a Member of the Health Facilities and Services Review Board.
· Monica Hendrickson will serve as a Member of the Health Facilities and Services Review Board.
Workforce Equity and Access Report: Governor Pritzker’s Commission on Workforce Equity and Access released “Strategic Recommendations for an Accessible, Inclusive, and Responsive Workforce Development System in Illinois,” a report on improvements to the state’s workforce ecosystem centered around issues of equity and structural barriers to access. The report makes several main recommendations, including:
• Legislatively create a Chief Workforce Officer in the Governor’s Office.
• Revitalize the Illinois Workforce Innovation Board and rename it the “Illinois Workforce Council.”
• Various workforce system design enhancements, including service delivery enhancements, staff investments, system funding, and changes to federally funded programs.
The complete report is here.
Low Income House Tax Credits: The Illinois Housing Development Authority is awarding almost $26 million in federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits to 18 affordable housing developments in 12 Illinois counties. The tax credits are expected to generate $235 million in private capital to finance the creation and/or preservation of 1,159 affordable units for low- to moderate-income families, seniors, and people with disabilities. Read more here.
2024 Election Update: Democrat Maria Peterson, who narrowly lost her challenge to former Senate Republican Leader Dan McConchie, will challenge second-term Representative Marty McLaughlin in the 52nd District.