103rd ILLINOIS GENERAL ASSEMBLY:
While the Legislature completed most of its work by Friday’s self-imposed early adjournment deadline, work remains to be done on the budget, the substantive legislation necessary to implement the budget and a handful of other matters. Both chambers worked late into the night on Friday and then adjourned until Wednesday, May 24. The Senate is scheduled to be in session Wednesday and Thursday. The House is scheduled to be in session Wednesday, Thursday and Friday although leadership has not ruled out the possibility of needing to be in session on Saturday as well. The new fiscal year starts July 1.
Traditionally, adjournment is scheduled for May 31 – after which it takes a super majority vote to pass legislation that contains an immediate effective date (like the budget). That date carries less significance now that Democrats hold supermajorities in both chambers.
Budget negotiations are taking longer than expected. One of the big obstacles is the soaring cost of a program that provides healthcare to immigrants. Costs were vastly underestimated for the existing population (ballooning over $1 billion) and advocates are seeking to further expand the program to cover individuals ages 19 to 41. Requests are also being made for increased reimbursement rates for Medicaid providers, hospitals, and front-line workers who provide care for adults with developmental disabilities as well as possibly offering universal pre-school. These spending pressures are further complicated by slowing state tax revenue and economic uncertainty nationwide. Governor Pritzker remains adamant that he wants a “balanced” budget.
Several large legislative packages emerged Friday afternoon. Several were agreed bipartisan efforts, although a few were controversial. They are positioned for passage next week and detailed below.
Omnibus Revenue Package: HFA # 1 to SB 1963 (Gillespie/Tarver) represents the 2023 omnibus revenue package. Passed the House 79-25-2 and heads to the Senate for concurrence. It:
· Addresses incentives for mid-range ethanol blends, gasohol, and majority blended ethanol fuel.
· Adjusts an exemption for materials, parts, equipment, components, and furnishings for aircraft.
· Broadens the exemption for farm machinery and equipment to include certain electrical power generation equipment.
· Provides that, with respect to aviation fuel, amounts paid as taxes under those Acts are to be deemed assessed upon the date of receipt of payment.
· Directs a change in the Hotel Operators’ Occupation Tax. Under the amendment, the tax does not apply to gross rental receipts received from an entity that is organized and operated exclusively by an organization chartered by the U.S. Congress for the purpose of providing disaster relief.
· Alters the New Markets Development Program Act so as to boost the annual cap on investments and extend the sunset of the Act.
· Changes the Illinois Municipal Code with regard to municipal tax review of public utilities.
· Allows for changes to the River Edge Redevelopment Zone Act such that the City of Joliet and the City of Kankakee might be certified for pilots.
· Extends the sunset of the Historic Preservation Tax Credit Act, while also providing for additional credits.
· Changes the Parking Excise Tax Act regarding booking intermediaries.
· Adjusts the Illinois Income Tax Act insofar as defining “investment partnerships” and withholding policies for them.
· Creates a credit for individuals who serve as volunteer emergency workers.
· Alters the distribution of money collected under (i) the Cigarette Tax Act, (ii) the Cigarette Use Tax Act, and (iii) the tax imposed on little cigars under the Tobacco Products Tax Act of 1995.
· Amends the Illinois Municipal Code with regard to the Non-Home Rule Municipal Use Tax Act and the Non-Home Rule Municipal Service Occupation Tax Act.
· Imparts income tax credits to taxpayers who give to a permanent endowment fund (through a newly created “Illinois Gives Tax Credit Act”).
Biometric Information Privacy Act: SFA # 1 and to HB 3811 (Burke/Cunningham) amends the Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA). Defines “electronic signature” and “in writing,” and provides that “written release” also means an electronic signature. Provides that, in actions brought under the Act, a prevailing party may recover against a private entity (that negligently violates the Act) liquidated damages of $1,500 (rather than $1,000) or actual damages — whichever is greater. Provides that a private entity that, in more than one instance, (i) collects, captures, purchases, receives through trade, or otherwise obtains or (ii) discloses, rediscloses, or otherwise disseminates the same biometric identifier or biometric information from the same person (in violation of specified provisions of the Act) has committed a single violation.
The business community adamantly opposes the legislation. While it negotiated changes to the BIPA law this session, this final proposal reflects few, if any, of its requested changes. Further, the final product increases fines under the Act by 50% and opens the law up for additional lawsuits. Both Amendments were postponed in the Senate Executive Committee. It’s uncertain if they will be called next week.
Omnibus Cannabis: HFA # 1 and # 2 to SB 1559 (Murphy/Ford) is an omnibus cannabis package. Both amendments are pending before the full House. The legislation:
· Increases craft grow canopy space (to 14,000 square feet).
· Permits drive-through windows and curbside pickup services to be offered at dispensaries.
· Allows both medical and adult-use employees to have the same badging requirements in place at cultivation centers and dispensaries.
· Authorizes medical exams to obtain a medical cannabis card to be conducted via telehealth.
· Directs cannabis testing facilities to be licensed (rather than registered) by the Department of Agriculture.
· Allows IDFPR to grant Conditional Adult Use Dispensing Organization License Holder an additional year find a physical address.
· Defers (for up to two years) licensing fees assessed on transporting organizations.
· Prohibits any new transporter licenses between January 1, 2024 through January 1, 2026.
· Permits cannabis businesses to deduct certain business expenses from their gross income for state tax purposes.
· Authorizes the Department of Agriculture to modify, by rule, medical cannabis packaging requirements.
· Ends the requirement that cannabis be transported in an odor proof container.
· Clarifies provisions about Dispensary Licenses – directs that they cannot be sold, transferred, assigned, used as collateral, have new principal offers to the ownership structure, or change the ownership structure in the conditional phase. Allows conditional licenses to add investors during the conditional phase, but only if they do not realize an interest or have a vested interest until the end of the conditional phase.
SB 1559 passed both houses, as amended, and heads to the Governor’s desk.
Patient and Provider Protection Act Trailer Bill: SB 1561 (Villanueva/Cassidy), as amended, is the second trailer bill to the Patient Provider and Protection Act this session. Prompted by the IDPH need for more time to implement the Abortion Care Clinical Training Program Act, this bill delays the effective date until January 1, 2025. Amends the Criminal Identification Act (to change the definition of “lawful health care”); amends the Accident and Health Article of the Illinois Insurance Code (to mandate coverage of preventive health services); and amends the Medical Practice Act of 1987 (regarding postgraduate training exemption periods and visiting rotations). SB 1561 passed the House by a vote of 70-34-1 and heads to the Senate for concurrence.
Automated Traffic Enforcement Reforms: HB 3903 (Davis/Murphy), as amended, attempts to address the ongoing ethical concerns over automated law enforcement systems. HB 3903 passed the Senate unanimously and heads to the House for consideration. Specifically, the legislation:
· Prohibits campaign contributions from any contractor that provides equipment and services for automated law enforcement, automated speed enforcement, or automated railroad grade crossing enforcement systems to municipalities or counties, as well as any political action committee created by the contractor.
· Requires an automated speed enforcement system or automated traffic law ordinance adopted by a municipality or county to stipulate that a citation can be issued only by the county or municipality — not by the vendor.
· Mandates signage for drivers where automated traffic camera exists.
· Prohibits any officer or employee of a municipality or county, or a member of the General Assembly, from accepting employment or compensation for services from contractors that provide municipalities/counties with automated law enforcement system equipment or services.
· Directs that every two years, there is to be a statistical analysis of the safety impacts of automated traffic law enforcement systems and automated speed enforcement systems.
· Requires IDOT to act within 90 days on permit applications for a county or municipality that changed vendors (so long as that vendor operates in another county of municipality).
· Mandates IDOT to authorize the reinstallation of any system (within 30 days after the construction is complete) that was rendered inoperable due to construction.
· Allows IDOT to revoke a permit when officials with a contractor or vendor are charged with certain offenses.
· Directs that six months before a county or municipality installs an automated traffic law enforcement system at an intersection, it may not change the yellow change interval at that intersection.
Procurement Package: HB 2878 (Hoffman/Castro), the 2023 procurement omnibus, makes several changes in that area. The bill passed the Senate 54-2 and heads to the House for concurrence.
· Procurement Code Changes: Makes changes in single prime procurement methods; the Illinois business bid preference; the veteran bid preferences; small business set-aside reporting; the award of contracts to not-for-profit agencies for persons with significant disabilities; the duration of contracts; public education programming; the application of the Code to public institutions of higher education; and not-for-profit agencies for persons with significant disabilities.
· Adds provisions on software licensing contracts.
· Governmental Joint Purchasing Act Changes: Authorizes chief procurement officers to award a contract on a non-competitive basis to a not-for-profit agency for persons with significant disabilities.
· Hotel Florence. Authorizes the Department of Natural Resources (pursuant to a competitive request for proposals process) to enter into a public-private agreement to develop, finance, construct, lease, manage, or operate the Hotel Florence on behalf of the State. Pre-empts home rule.
· Contractor Diversity: Adds provisions on the reporting of contractor diversity. Amends the State Fair Act such that the State Fairgrounds in Springfield are exempt from procurement expenditures relative to providing artistic or musical services, performances, events, or productions under the Act.
· Transportation Sustainability: Directs that the State’s solicitations for freight, small package delivery, and other cargo shipping and transportation services are to be subject to the Illinois Procurement Code or the Governmental Joint Purchasing Act (rather than only the Illinois Procurement Code).
· Public-Private Partnerships for Transportation: Expands the act to allow the tollway and units of local government to work with PPPs instead of just IDOT. Also changes the requirements of public construction bonding.
Gaming: HFA # 5 to SB 1996 (Peters/Buckner) seeks to prevent the Gaming Board from issuing licenses to those who have engaged in certain illegal activities. Further allows the Board to refuse an occupational license to any person whose background poses a threat to the public interests of the State or to the security and integrity of gaming. Establishes criteria for the Board to use in evaluating criminal convictions of an applicant. HFA # 5 is assigned to the House Rules Committee.
Omnibus Elections Package: SB 2123 (Morrison/Stuart), as amended, represents an omnibus elections package that:
· Establishes a Ranked-Choice and Voting Systems Task Force.
· Creates a naturalization ceremony registration process.
· Permits 16-year-olds to pre-register to vote.
· Directs election jurisdictions to have one election day voting center; jurisdictions with 500,000 or more voters must provide at least two election day voting centers.
· Increases the fees for discovery recount and requires challengers to election results to pay a security deposit.
· Prevents lame duck mayors from appointing members to the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Board.
· Declares that in 2024, the general election day is a state holiday.
· Ensures that, in consolidated elections, the county clerk is notified of objections to petitions.
· Alters the permanent vote by mail option and notification.
· Requires ballots use capital and lower-case letters.
· Mandates that constitutional amendments be printed at the top of ballots, and if newspapers publish the amendment in print editions, they must also include it on their website content.
· Eliminates a requirement that an organization disclose its sponsoring entities.
· Simplifies vote by mail attestation.
· Permits flexibility for County convention dates and allows them to be held by audio/video conference.
· Alters the election process of park district commissioners per their request.
· Extends the Judicial Elections Task Force.
· Makes changes to the jurisdiction of petition challenges for state senate candidates in Cook County and the city of Chicago.
SB 2123 passed the House Ethics and Elections Committee 10-6 and is pending before the full House.
Omnibus Property Tax Package: HB 2507 (Croke/Villanueva), as amended, represents an omnibus property tax package. HB 2507 passed the Senate unanimously and heads to the House for concurrence. The legislation:
· Changes the veteran’s homestead exemption for WWII veterans; adjustments also address service-connected disabilities and surviving spouses.
· Implements a homestead exemption for surviving spouses of fallen police officers and fallen rescue workers (in an amount equal to 50% of the equalized assessed value of the property).
· Alters the valuation of non-profit wastewater facilities.
· Addresses the Historic Residence Assessment Freeze Law, providing that the fair cash value of the property shall be based on the final determination by the assessment officer, board of review, Property Tax Appeal Board, or court. Directs that — after the expiration of the eight-year valuation period — if the current fair cash value is less than the adjusted base year valuation, the assessment is to be based on the current fair cash value.
· Makes changes concerning multi-township assessors.
· Directs that property that is used for a petroleum refinery may be the subject of a real property tax assessment settlement agreement among the taxpayer and taxing districts in which the property is situated.
· Changes the Park District Aquarium and Museum Act. Allows the board of park commissioners or corporate authorities of a municipality (currently, only boards of park commissioners) to levy a tax — if the park district or municipality has control of a public park or parks within the park district or municipality in which an aquarium or museum is maintained.
· Amends the Property Tax Extension Limitation Law of the Property Tax Code. Provides that extensions for levies (made under the Park District and Municipal Aquarium and Museum Act) are special purpose extensions and are not included in the park district’s or municipality’s aggregate extension.
· Establishes an exemption for municipality-built homes.
· Directs that real property that is used to provide services requiring a license (under the Nursing Home Care Act or under the Specialized Mental Health Facilities Act) is not to have a higher level of assessment than residential property in the county in which the nursing home or mental health services facility is located.
Punitive Damages: HB 219 (Hoffman/Harmon), as amended, allows for punitive damages to be awarded in wrongful death cases. The bill exempts local and state governments (and their employees), as well as legal and medical malpractice. An initiative of the Illinois Trial Lawyers, the legislation was filed as an amendment this week, quickly passed both houses, and heads to the Governor’s desk. The business and insurance communities oppose the legislation. Read more here.
Firearm Industry Responsibility Act: As amended, HB 218 (Gong Gershowitz/Harmon) amends the Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practice Act to subject the sale and marketing of firearms to the Act and allow private citizens, the attorney general, and counties to sue firearm industry members. HB 218 passed both houses and heads to the Governor’s desk.
Insurance Supplier Diversity: Senator Harris filed SFA # 1 to HB 2089 (Jones/Harris) which requires every insurance company (with assets of at least $50 million) authorized to do business in the State or accredited by the State to submit to the Department of Insurance a report on its voluntary supplier diversity program, or the company’s procurement program if there is no supplier diversity program. Requires companies to submit a report to the Department on April 1. The Department will publish the results of supplier diversity reports on its website for five years. Requires the Department to hold an annual supplier diversity workshop to discuss the reports with representatives of the companies and vendors. HB 2089 passed the Senate unanimously and heads to the House for concurrence.
Chicago Bears Legislation: The House Executive Committee held a brief subject matter hearing on a proposal to subsidize the Chicago Bears’ move to a new stadium in Arlington Heights – HB 610 (Moylan). HFA # 1 creates the Megaproject Sports and Entertainment Facility Admission Tax Act. The bill freezes property taxes for the former Arlington Heights Racetrack (which was purchased by the Chicago Bears for their new stadium). The bill also proposes sharing sales tax and other proceeds with surrounding towns and imposing a $3 surcharge on Bears’ tickets to help compensate the city of Chicago for the loss of revenue. The sponsor noted that he does not plan to move the package forward at this time as negotiations will continue over the summer.
Omnibus Firearm Legislation: While the House passed an omnibus firearm package last week, the Senate has yet to act on it. HB 676 (Hirschauer/Harmon) creates a Task Force on Firearm Insurance; requires a FOID card to possess or use prepackaged explosives like Tannerite; extends and makes changes to the First Time Weapon Offender Program; and alters the Firearms Restraining Order and Domestic Violence Act. The bill remains in the Senate Committee on Assignments.
Environmental Justice: Environmental Justice legislation, HB 2520 (Harper), failed for a second time in the House this week, by a vote of 57-48. The bill – which would have needed 60 votes to pass – would have reformed the process for permitting construction of new sources of air pollution, including adding a new fee structure. HFA # 1 was adopted which removes the $200,000 permit fee imposed in the underlying bill. The bill is supported by environmentalists while the business community remains opposed.
Reproductive Health: HB 3326 (Williams/Feigenholtz) is an initiative of the Secretary of State which will ensure that automatic license plate readers are not used to target individuals from out-of-state seeking access to reproductive healthcare or to track their immigration status. HB 3326 passed the Senate 39-15 and now heads back to the House for concurrence.
State-based Health Insurance Exchange: Legislation to create a state based health insurance exchange, HB 579 (Gabel/Harmon), is pending on 3rd Reading in the Senate. Under the bill, Illinois will transition to a full state-based exchange in 2026. The Governor’s proposed budget targets $10 million for start-up costs. Once Illinois fully transitions to the state-based exchange, the exchange will be funded through an assessment on insurers who participate in the program.
Packaging and Paper Stewardship: SB 1555 (Koehler/Avelar) creates the Statewide Recycling Needs Assessment Act — which in turn creates the Statewide Recycling Needs Assessment Advisory Council. The Council is to provide advice and recommendations to the Environmental Protection Agency in the drafting, amending, and finalizing of the Statewide Recycling Needs Assessment. SB 1555 passed both houses and heads to the Governor’s desk.
Prescription Affordability: HB 2189 (Ladish Douglass/Murphy) caps insulin at $35 per month and creates a discount program that allows participants to purchase insulin at a discounted, post-rebate price. HB 2189 passed both House and heads to the Governor’s desk.
HB 3957 (Syed/Koehler) prohibits a manufacturer or wholesale drug distributor from engaging in price gouging in the sale of an essential off-patent or generic drug and gives the Attorney General the ability to investigate price gouging. As amended, the Attorney General is allowed (rather than required) to send a notice to the manufacturer or distributor requesting a statement if the AG believes that they violated the Act. The amendment further requires HFS (instead of CMS) to notify the AG of any increase in the price of any essential off-patent or generic drug under the State health plan that constitutes price gouging. The AG’s Office testified that it does not have the staff or expertise to perform the tasks of the bill. HB 3967 passed both houses and heads to the Governor’s desk.
Broadband SB 851 (Ventura/Hoffman) requires the Broadband Advisory Council to evaluate the expansion of the Illinois Century Network to Illinois public schools, public libraries, and State-owned correctional facilities — including issuing recommendations for increasing agency staffing, infrastructure development, price modeling, and providing download speeds of at least one gigabyte per second and upload speeds of at least one gigabyte per second. Requires the Council to study the feasibility of connecting all Illinois public schools, public libraries, and State-owned correctional institutions or facilities to the Illinois Century Network by January 1, 2030. SB 851 passed both houses and heads to the Governor’s desk.
The Dig Once Act, SB 1438 (Ventura/Hoffman), passed both houses and heads to the Governor’s desk. This bill creates the Illinois Dig Once Act which requires several state entities (the Department of Transportation, the Illinois State Toll Highway Authority, the Illinois Commerce Commission, and the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity) to consult with the Statewide One-Call Notice System. The goal in doing so is to jointly develop rules on road, highway, tollway, and expressway projects to reduce the relocation of public water and wastewater infrastructure, and to promote– for all road, highway, tollway, and expressway projects — the deployment of broadband infrastructure and underground utility facilities in an efficient and competitively neutral process.
SFA # 1 to HB 3808 (Andrade/Cunningham) prohibits a participating utility in Cook County from making available to its customers broadband services, voice-over-internet-protocol services, telecommunications services, or cable or video programming services, unless they are part of a service directly related to delivery services or Smart Grid functionality or applications. Recovering the costs of such offerings from retail customers would also be prohibited. SFA # 1 is assigned to the Senate Executive Committee.
Elected Chicago School Board: Legislative Democrats filed a revised map of districts boundaries for the newly elected Chicago School Board. The revised map has five White-majority districts, seven Black-majority districts, and five Latino-majority districts. The other districts are split, with Latinos having a slight plurality in two. The maps can be viewed here. Lawmakers have until July 1 to draw the boundaries.
Healthcare Mergers and Acquisitions: HB 2222 (Gong-Gershowitz/Gillespie) requires that the Attorney General be notified of mergers and acquisitions of certain health care facilities and large provider organizations. Allows the Attorney General to impose penalties for failure to report these actions. The bill, an initiative of the AG, passed both houses and heads to the Governor’s desk.
Ethics Reform: Representative West, who chairs the House Ethics and Elections Committee, says work will continue over the summer on a larger ethics package.
Public Transit Package: HB 1342 (Buckner/Villivalam)is a comprehensive public transit package addressing public safety, transparency, transit barriers, an extension of the FTA fare box recovery ratio for two years, and measures towards a green future. Passed both houses and heads to the Governor’s desk.
Property Tax Sale Reform: The Illinois House approved SB 1675 (Villanueva/Buckner) which, as amended, reforms Illinois’ property tax sale process. The legislation (1) allows local counties and municipalities to quickly intervene after failed delinquent tax sales to save abandoned properties; (2) reduces taxpayer funded payouts to property tax buyers by narrowing the sale in error loopholes; (3) cuts in half the monthly interest rate on delinquent taxes for homeowners from 1.5% to .75%; and (4) eliminates tax buyer leverage in Cook County which makes the scavenger sale optional. SB 1675 now heads to the Senate for concurrence. Read more here. SB 1675 is pending in the Senate on the order of concurrence.
Venue: Senator Harmon filed SFA # 2 to HB 3062 (Olickal/Harmon) which limits venue shopping in cases challenging the constitutionality of state statute or Executive Order. Specifically, the legislation provides that, if an action is brought against the State (or any of its officers, employees, or agents acting in an official capacity) seeking declaratory or injunctive relief against any State statute, rule, or executive order based on an alleged violation of the Constitution of the State of Illinois or the Constitution of the U.S., venue in that action is proper only in the County of Sangamon and the County of Cook. HB 3062 passed the Senate 37-16 and heads to the House for concurrence.
Halal and Kosher Food Offerings: HB 3643 (Rashid/Villivalam) requires public schools, the University of Illinois hospital, and state correctional facilities – beginning in July of 2024 – to offer religious meals including Halal and Kosher Foods. Further requires ISBE to engage in a master contract to allow schools to execute the provisions of the legislation. ISBE testified in opposition to the legislation. HB 3643 passed the Senate 39-19, as amended, and heads to the House for concurrence.
Omnibus Sunset Extension: SB 89 (Harris/Rita) is an omnibus sunset extension bill which extends the repeal dates for seven items including cocktails-to-go and for the Illinois Street Gang and Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Law. SB 89 passed the House unanimously, as amended, and heads to the Senate for concurrence.
Grocery Initiative: SB 850 (Belt/Canty) directs the state’s Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity to establish the “Grocery Initiative,” a program that would study “food deserts” in Illinois and provide grants to new or existing grocery stores in these areas. Passed the House 96 -17 and heads back to the Senate for concurrence.
Passed Both Houses: The following bills passed both houses and head to the Governor’s desk.
· SB 724 (Feigenholtz/LaPointe) implements the recommendations from the Governor’s Behavioral Health Transformation Blueprint. Specifically, SB 724 creates the Interagency Children’s Behavioral Health Services Act which will create a centralized intake portal to manage information — as well as provide parents with guidance and referrals to state and community-based programs for which they are eligible. The legislation also broadens the supports and placements that community-based providers can offer to youth in crisis; creates a Parent/Guardian Navigator Assistance Program; increases transparency in staffing at residential and institutional facilities; and lays the foundation for a plan to provide annual mental health screenings to all K-12 students in the state.
· HB 2086 (Stava-Murray/Edly-Allen) is an initiative of the Illinois Environmental Council. As amended, the bill creates health standards for individuals wishing to bring their own to-go containers to retailers and restaurants to do so in a safe and healthy manner.
· SB 58 (Fine/Gong Gershowitz) phases out the use of single use polystyrene foam in state agencies. The sponsor testified that this would apply to vendors at the Illinois State Fair and DuQuoin State Fair.
· HB 1286 (Stuart/Villanueva) permits public and private entities to install gender inclusive restrooms. They must have floor-to-ceiling stalls with locks and privacy strips.
· HB 300 (Stuart/Belt) clarifies the exact inflation index for teacher minimum salaries.
· HB 2231(Gong-Gershowitz/Martwick) extends the repeal of the Transportation Network Providers Act for five years — from September 1, 2023 to September 1, 2028. Further clarifies that rideshare drivers will remain independent contractors. As amended, the bill also subjects rideshare companies to the same type of lawsuits that can be filed against taxi companies and others.
· HB 3129 (Canty/Pacione-Zayas) requires employers with 15 or more employees to disclose the pay scale and benefits in job postings. Empowers the Department of Labor to initiate an investigation of violations. Also authorizes the Department to investigate and levy civil penalties against employers that violate provisions concerning the posting of pay scale and benefits.
· HB 2396 (Canty/Lightford) requires the option for full-day kindergarten.
· HB 2531 (Davis/Harris) requires the Illinois Department of Transportation to enter into public-private agreements and to establish a prequalification process for vendors to participate in the development, financing, construction, management, and operation of a south suburban airport. The airport would serve commercial and cargo planes.
· SB 76 (Rezin/Yednock) lifts Illinois’ ban on new nuclear reactors.
· SB 2243 (Lightford/Mayfield) creates a statewide comprehensive literacy plan.
New Member: On Saturday, local Democrats selected Kimberly Neely du Buclet to replace former Representative Lamont Robinson in the 5th district. Du Buclet was a State Representative from 2011-2013 and has been serving on the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District since 2018.
Blue Collar Jobs Act: The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity announced the launch of the Blue Collar Jobs Act (BCJA) Tax Credit application for eligible companies. BCJA is a bipartisan legislative package to promote economic expansion and growth in Illinois by incentivizing construction projects. The legislation makes $20 million in tax credits available per year for eligible companies. Read more here and here.
Gubernatorial Appointments: The Governor appointed the following:
· Sean Stott will continue to serve as a Member on the Workers’ Compensation Advisory Board.
· Mark Prince will continue to serve as a Member on the Workers’ Compensation Advisory Board.
· Aaron Anderson will continue to serve as a Member of the Workers’ Compensation Advisory Board.
· Delmar Gillus will serve as a Member of the Clean Energy Jobs and Justice Fund.
· Brad Roos will serve as a Member of the Clean Energy Jobs and Justice Fund.
· Juleigh Nowinski Konchak will serve as a Member of the State Board of Health.
· Yvette Johnson-Walker will serve as a Member of the State Board of Health.
· Karen Caldwell will serve as a Member of the Illinois Finance Authority.
· John Gedney will continue to serve on the Employment Security Advisory Board.
· Chris Toppin will serve as a Member of the Illinois Workforce Innovation Board.
· Kara Demirjian Huss will serve as a Member of the Illinois Workforce Innovation Board.
· Stephen Lefaver will serve as a Member of the Illinois Workforce Innovation Board.
· Mboka Mwilambwe will serve as a Member of the Illinois Workforce Innovation Board.
· Karen Harris will serve as a Member of the Labor Advisory Board.
· Vickii Coffey will continue to serve as a Member of the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority.