October 25, 2019

Governor’s highlights:
Gov. JB Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Transportation released the department’s plan to spend $23.5 billion in state and federal matching funds on roads and bridges in Illinois. The plan dedicates more than 75% of the funds to reconstructing and preserving roadways and bridges, 16% to expanding the system in areas where data have shown the investment will be highly effective and the remainder for necessary traffic and safety improvements.
The Governor’s Office of Management and Budget issued its annual Economic and Fiscal Policy Report. The report concludes that Illinois will continue to face significant financial challenges until it finds a long-term solution to its structural deficit. If Illinois remains on its current fiscal trajectory and makes no changes to address the structural deficit, GOMB predicts Illinois’ deficit could grow to $19 billion in five years. Gov. Pritzker believes that the graduated income tax is the long-term solution Illinois needs to end its structural deficit. The report concludes that there are few alternatives if the graduated income tax amendment is not enacted. Alternatives to address the structural deficit include budget cuts of approximately 15 percent or raising the flat tax by 20%.  The report is here .
Attorney General Highlights:
Attorney General Kwame Raoul filed a motion in Cook County Circuit Court to take action against Mallinckrodt plc, Mallinckrodt LLC, and Specgx LLC (Mallinckrodt) for its role in the opioid epidemic. The filing seeks to expand the Attorney General’s lawsuit against opioid manufacturers and distributors for creating and contributing to the nation’s opioid epidemic. 

101st General Assembly:
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot wants the Illinois General Assembly to address changes to the gaming law passed this spring and create a transfer tax during the upcoming veto session. Specifically, Lightfoot wants to reduce the effective tax rate on a Chicago casino to 45 percent. She has reportedly dropped her original idea to have the city and state jointly own the gaming license. The Mayor also wants the General Assembly to authorize a graduated transfer tax that would apply to commercial real estate sales which she estimates will generate $50 million for the City of Chicago. The Mayor’s requests face an uphill battle in the veto session. Some non-Chicago area legislators are voicing concerns with supporting Chicago-only legislation during veto session.
Changes to ethylene oxide regulations, clean-up to recreational cannabis, possible restrictions to vaping products, and Pritzker’s pension consolidation are also on the radar for the Fall Veto Session. Consideration of clean energy legislation this fall remains unknown. Environmental advocates continue to push for consideration of the Clean Energy Jobs Act during veto session, however, Gov. Pritzker noted he does not expect passage during veto session.
House Rules met this week and positioned legislation for consideration next week. Senate Assignments has not met and is expected to meet Monday. The House positioned several vehicle bills for consideration during veto session as well as a handful of substantive bills. House committees are scheduled to meet next week. No Senate committee meetings are scheduled at this time.
SB1407 (Hastings/Walsh) has been reassigned to 3rd Reading in the House.   Creates the Illinois Hazardous Materials Workforce Training Act. Provides that the Department of Labor shall develop by rule a curriculum of approved advanced safety training for workers at high hazard facilities. Provides that an owner or operator, when contracting for the performance of construction work at the stationary source, shall require that its contractors and any subcontractors use a skilled and trained workforce to perform all onsite work within an apprenticeable occupation in the building and construction trades. Provides a penalty for violation of the Act. Creates the Illinois Hazardous Materials Workforce Training Fund as a special fund in the State treasury. The bill stalled at the end of the spring session but is now back up for consideration. No amendments have been filed at this time.
HB3883 (Conroy) which creates a Flavored Tobacco Ban is scheduled for a hearing before the House Human Services Committee on Oct. 28th at 2:30pm in Room C-1 of the Stratton Building. This is new legislation which would require 3 full readings in both chambers.
Two bills to regulate ethylene oxide are assigned to House Energy and Environment. HB3885 (Durkin) and HB3888 (Mayfield) are both scheduled for a hearing in the House Energy and Environment Committee on Oct. 28th at 2:30pm.
The House positioned a potential gaming vehicle bill, SB516 (Link/Rita). Placed on 2nd Reading in the House. No new amendments are filed at this time.
Rep. Buckner filed legislation to repeal red light cameras, HB3927.  Heads to House Rules. This is the second bill filed this fall to repeal the use of red light cameras.
HJR87 (McCombie) was filed this week. The resolution creates a state ethics task force to address corruption in Illinois government. Heads to House Rules.
Republican Rep. Mike Unes announced he will not seek re-election in 2020. He intends to serve out the remainder of his current term which expires in Jan. 2021.

Coming Up:
Fall Veto session dates: October 28th – 30th and November 12th – 14th.
A complete listing of the House committee schedule for next week is here.