Senator Steans

February 6, 2018

Dear Friends,

 

Senator Steans in a committee hearingThis is shaping up to be a busy week in Springfield. In addition to our regularly scheduled committee hearings, the Senate is holding four subject matter hearings. These hearings will include an update from the Governor’s Office of Management and Budget on his cost-cutting initiatives, an in-depth look at the legionella outbreak at the Illinois Veterans Home at Quincy, information on the implementation of the evidence based funding model, and a report from the Employment and Economic Opportunity for Persons with Disabilities Task Force.

 

I have included a list of noteworthy bills that are scheduled to be heard in committee this week below. Please note that if a bill is not called in a committee hearing, you need to submit a new witness slip the next time the bill is scheduled to be heard. Each witness slip is tied to a specific committee hearing.

 

There are several reasons why a bill might not be called even though it was posted, such as a scheduling conflict or ongoing meetings with proponents or opponents, among others. For directions on how to submit a witness slip to show your support or opposition to a particular bill, click here.

 

I am always looking for ways to improve this newsletter. If you have thoughts on how to make it better, please reply to this email or call my office. If you have friends or family who might be interested in receiving this weekly newsletter during the legislative session, please encourage them to sign up here.

 

As always, please do not hesitate to contact my office at 773-769-1717 or reach out online with any questions or concerns.

 

Sincerely,
Heather Steans
Senator Heather Steans
7th District – Illinois

 

Noteworthy bills in committee this week

 

Commerce and economic development issues

  • Entrepreneur learners permit - SB 2281 expands the Entrepreneur Learner's Permit pilot program to encourage and assist beginning entrepreneurs in certain business sectors by reimbursing them for State fees associated with starting a business. This legislation is sponsored by Sen. Righter and is scheduled in the Commerce and Economic Development Committee.

Consumer protection issues

  • Resident privacy - SB 572 repeals the requirement for condo boards to maintain a current listing of condo residents' phone numbers and email addresses. Under current law, that information is available to condo residents upon request and for a purpose related to the association. This legislation is sponsored by Senator Raoul and is scheduled in the Judiciary Committee.

  • Net neutrality - SR 1196 and SR 1117 address the FCC's decision to repeal net neutrality and urge continued access to free and open internet. Net neutrality is the basic principle that prohibits internet service providers from speeding up, slowing down, charging for, or blocking any content, applications or websites. Both resolutions are scheduled in the State Government Committee.

Education issues

  • Civics - HB 1252 requires every public elementary school to include at least one semester of civics education in its 6th, 7th or 8th grade curriculum. This legislation is sponsored by Senatior Tom Cullerton and is scheduled in the Education Committee.

Pensions and state contract issues

  • State contracts - SB 2279 prohibits the State of Illinois from entering into or awarding any contract if there is not funding in place for the contract. This legislation is sponsored by Senator Murphy and is scheduled in the State Government Committee.

  • Teachers' pensions - SB 2307 eliminates teachers' vehicle allowance from counting as pensionable earnings. This applies to the downstate teachers' pension code. This legislation is sponsored by Senator Morrison and is scheduled in the Licensed Activities and Pensions Committee.

Public health issues

  • Tobacco 21 - SB 2332 raises the age to buy tobacco products from 18 to 21 in Illinois. This legislation is sponsored by Senator Morrison and is scheduled in the Public Health Committee.

  • Alternatives to opioids - SB 336 would allow patients who have been prescribed opioids to apply for a temporary medical marijuana card instead through an expedited process. This legislation is sponsored by Senator Harmon and is scheduled in Executive Committee.

  • Flu vaccine - HB 2984 allows local health departments and facilities to implement a flu vaccination policy, including a mandatory flu vaccine. Employees may be exempt from the flu vaccine for medical or religious reasons. This legislation only applies to local health departments with a jurisdiction of 500,000 or more residents. This legislation is sponsored by Senator Cunningham and is scheduled in the Public Health Committee.

Public safety issues

  • Victims of domestic violence - SB 2330 allows victims of domestic violence to waive the publication requirement when filing a name change petition. This legislation is sponsored by Senator Hutchinson and is scheduled in the Judiciary Committee.

  • Metal detectors in hospitals - SB 2334 requires hospitals to have a metal detector at each public point of entry into the hospital and makes all members of the public subject to screening by a metal detector. This legislation is sponsored by Senator Murphy and is scheduled in the Public Health Committee.

Committee schedule for Tuesday, Feb. 6

All committee hearings are held in the Capitol building unless otherwise noted.

 

  • Senate Education Committee subject matter hearing on the State Board of Education's implementation of the evidence based funding model
    1:30 p.m., Room 212
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

  • Senate Public Health Committee
    1:30 p.m., Room 400
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

  • Senate Human Services Committee subject matter hearing on Employment and Economic Opportunity for Persons with Disabilities Task Force
    2:30 p.m., Room D-1 Stratton Building
    Please note that this is a joint committee hearing with the House Special Needs Services Committee.

  • Senate Judiciary Committee
    2:30 p.m., Room 400
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

 

Committee schedule for Wednesday, Feb. 7

 

  • Veterans Affairs Committee subject matter hearing on the legionella outbreak and response at the Illinois Veterans Home at Quincy
    9 a.m., Room 212
    Please note this is a joint hearing with the House Veterans Affairs Committee.

  • Executive Committee
    1 p.m., Room 212
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

  • Licensed Activities and Pensions Committee
    1 p.m., Room 400
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

  • State Government Committee
    1 p.m., Room 409
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

  • Senate Appropriations I and Appropriations II Committees subject matter hearing on an update from the Governor's Office of Management and Budget on fiscal year 18 revenue, budget implementation and cost-cutting initiatives
    2:30 p.m., Room 212

  • Senate Insurance Committee
    4 p.m., Room 400
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

  • Senate Revenue Committee
    4 p.m., Room 212
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

 

Committee schedule for Thursday, Feb. 8

 

  • Senate Agriculture Committee
    9 a.m., Room 409
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

  • Senate Commerce and Economic Development Committee
    10 a.m., Room 400
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

 

 

District Office

5533 N. Broadway • Chicago, IL 60640

773-769-1717 (Phone) • 773-769-6901 (Fax)

 

Springfield Office

623 Capitol Building • Springfield, IL 62706

217-782-8492 (Phone)

 

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www.SenatorSteans.com

 

Senator Steans in a committee hearingSPRINGFIELD – State Senator Heather Steans (D-Chicago) issued the following statement in response to the governor’s State of the State address:

“Lawmakers have been working together for months – to craft the Grand Bargain and pass a bipartisan budget that included nearly $3 billion in spending reductions. The person missing in all of those bipartisan efforts was the governor. I hope that he takes his message today to heart and returns to the negotiating table.”

###

Senator Steans

January 30, 2018

Dear Friends,

 

Senator Steans in a committee hearingThis week kicks off the spring legislative session. I look forward to reviewing new legislation as well as measures that were not addressed last year.

 

I have provided a list of noteworthy bills that are scheduled to be heard in committee this week, as well as the committee hearing itinerary below. The Senate plans to discuss legislation to end Illinois’ participation in the Crosscheck voter registration system, create restrictions to the tax credit scholarship program for private schools, and review legislation to combat the opioid epidemic, among other proposals this week.

 

I encourage you to read more about these pieces of legislation and submit a witness slip to indicate whether you support or oppose a bill. For directions on how to submit a witness slip and make your opinion known, click here. You can listen to committee hearings or floor debate in real-time here.

 

The governor will give his State of the State address this Wednesday at noon in the House chambers. Here’s a link to watch and listen to his presentation.

 

As always, please do not hesitate to contact my office at 773-769-1717 or reach out online with any questions or concerns.

 

Sincerely,
Heather Steans
Senator Heather Steans
7th District – Illinois

 

Noteworthy bills in committee this week

 

Commerce and economic development

  • Local first - HB 1023 creates the "Support your Neighbor Commission" to increase the number of products made in the United States and Illinois that are bought and sold by the State. (Murphy)

  • Entrepreneur learners permit - SB 2281 expands the Entrepreneur Learner's Permit pilot program to encourage and assist beginning entrepreneurs in certain business sectors by reimbursing them for State fees associated with starting a business. (Righter)

Consumer protection

  • Crosscheck - SB 2273 ends Illinois' participation in the Crosscheck voter registration system, a program for sharing voter data among states that poses cyber security risks and has been the basis for discriminatory purging of voter rolls in other states. (Raoul)

  • Russian hacking - HJR 59 creates a task force to address threats from Russian cyber security hackers. (Cunningham)

Education

  • Tax credits - SB 2236 prevents donors from receiving a tax credit for scholarship donations if the state doesn't meet minimum school funding levels. (Bertino-Tarrant)

  • Civics - HB 1252 requires every public elementary school to include at least one semester of civics education in its 6th, 7th or 8th grade curriculum. (Cullerton, J)

  • Common application - SB 2234 establishes a uniform admission process for public colleges and universities in Illinois. (Rose)

  • Tax credit for in-state tuition - SB 2259 allows qualified Illinois parents or students to claim a tax credit based on the family's income needs for higher education expenses at any qualified public or private university, community college, vocational school, or other post-secondary educational institution in Illinois. (Murphy)

Pensions and state contracts

  • Pensions for legislators - SB 2292 makes General Assembly members who retire after 2019 responsible for 50 percent of their General Assembly Retirement System cost. (Bivins)

  • State contracts - SB 2279 prohibits the State of Illinois from entering into or awarding any contract if there is not funding in place for the contract. (Murphy)

Public Health

  • Alternatives to opioids - SB 336 would allow patients who have been prescribed opioids to apply for a temporary medical marijuana card instead through an expedited process. (Harmon)

Taxes

  • Retail store valuations - SB 1793 seeks to end the practice of large retail stores seeking lower assessed valuation and shifting the property tax burden to taxpayers. (Stadelman)

  • Senior property tax exemption - SB 2305 raises the income limit to $75,000 for senior citizens to claim the assessment freeze homestead exemption on their property taxes. The cap currently is $65,000. (Murphy)

Veterans

  • Legionnaires' outbreak - SR 1186 requires the Auditor General to conduct a performance audit of the Illinois Department of Veterans' Affairs' management of the Legionnaires' disease outbreaks in veteran homes. (Cullerton, T)

Committee Schedule for Jan. 30

All committee hearings are held in the Capitol building unless otherwise noted.

  • Senate Executive Committee Hearing
    1:30 p.m., Room 212
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

  • Senate Licensed Activities and Pensions Committee
    1:30 p.m., Room 400
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

  • Senate State Government Committee
    1:30 p.m., Room 409
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

  • Senate Education Committee
    2:45 p.m., Room 212
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

  •  Senate Veterans Affairs Committee
    2:45 p.m., Room 409
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

  • Senate Higher Education Committee
    4 p.m., Room 212
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

  • Senate Revenue Committee
    5:15 p.m., Room 212
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

 

Committee Schedule for Jan. 31

 

  • Senate Local Government Committee
    9 a.m., Room 409
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

  • Senate Criminal Law Committee
    2:30 p.m., Room 400
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

 

Committee Schedule for Feb. 1

 

  • Senate Commerce and Economic Development Committee
    10 a.m., Room 400
    To see submitted witness slips for this committee and submit your own, click here.

 

 

District Office

5533 N. Broadway • Chicago, IL 60640

773-769-1717 (Phone) • 773-769-6901 (Fax)

 

Springfield Office

623 Capitol Building • Springfield, IL 62706

217-782-8492 (Phone)

 

Unsubscribe

www.SenatorSteans.com

 

Senator Steans

January 23, 2018

Dear Friends,

 

Click here to sign the petitionRight now, numerous Illinoisans are suffering from intractable pain, a severe form of chronic pain that is constant and incurable. The only thing standing in their way is the Rauner administration and its refusal to allow these patients access to medical cannabis.

 

Illinois has a fairly strict medical marijuana program, with only about 40 approved conditions. Ann Mednick is a north suburban woman who suffers from a form of intractable pain. She takes opioids to cope but sought a treatment plan with fewer side effects. She sued the Illinois Department of Public Health after it rejected her petition to add intractable pain to the state’s list of qualifying conditions for medical cannabis.

 

Last week, a Cook County judge sided with Mednick and ordered IDPH to add the condition to the list.

 

However, given a choice between showing compassion for those suffering from chronic pain or pursuing a costly legal battle, the Rauner administration chose the latter. The administration has said it will appeal the judge’s ruling.

 

Do you think a court appeal is a good use of taxpayer resources? I don’t. That’s why I started a petition to call on Gov. Rauner to drop his fight and add intractable pain to the qualifying condition list for medical cannabis. If you agree, click here to sign the petition.

 

Together, we can work to expand access to medical cannabis and help those who are seeking relief from severe, life-altering pain. Click here to sign the petition telling the governor to drop the lawsuit.

 

As always, please do not hesitate to contact my office at 773-769-1717 or reach out online with any questions or concerns.

 

Sincerely,
Heather Steans
Senator Heather Steans
7th District – Illinois

 

 

District Office

5533 N. Broadway • Chicago, IL 60640

773-769-1717 (Phone) • 773-769-6901 (Fax)

 

Springfield Office

623 Capitol Building • Springfield, IL 62706

217-782-8492 (Phone)

 

Unsubscribe

www.SenatorSteans.com

 

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District Office
5533 N. Broadway
Chicago, IL 60640
Office: 773-769-1717
Fax: 773-769-6901

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Springfield, IL 62706
Office: 217-782-8492