Fighting heart disease

Illinois legislators, representatives from the state Department of Public Health, and health advocates gathered in Capitol Feb. 15 to spread awareness of the American Heart Association’s Go Red For Women campaign, and to encourage Illinois women to unite in the fight against heart disease and stroke.

Budget data show need to resolve impasse

Sen. Rose says he is ready to work with the Governor and his fellow lawmakers to put aside the divisive rhetoric and make the kind of tough decisions necessary to pass a balanced budget and enacting the critical reforms that will provide stability and growth to our state.”

Budget Options

Gov. Rauner outlined budget options to a joint session of legislators in the House of Representatives, during his third annual Budget Address Feb. 15.

Innovation Legislation Sponsored by Rose Seeks Boost in Illinois’ Bio-based Economy

Legislation designed to grow Illinois’ bio-based economy has been introduced by Senator Chapin Rose. Senate Bill 1656 provides incentives to Illinois businesses to produce and sell new renewable products made from biomass and other renewable sources.

IDOT asking public for input in its long range plan

The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) is asking for additional input from the public in developing its Long Range Transportation Plan.

State Budget Update

The Senate voted Feb. 8 on four of 13 measures that make up the budget framework Senate Republican Leader Christine Radogno (R-Lemont) and Democrat Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago) have been negotiating. Opposed to taking a piecemeal approach, Senate Republicans held firm in their call for the budget package to be voted on in its entirety, not as individual pieces of legislation.

Senate could vote on budget framework

The Illinois Senate could vote next week on a bipartisan budget framework that would produce a balanced state budget, move Illinois forward economically and in job creation, and turn Illinois around fiscally.

Unionized state workers begin voting to authorize strike

With contract negotiations stalled between AFSCME (American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees) Council 31, Illinois’ largest public employee union, and Gov. Rauner’s administration, members of AFSCME began voting this week to authorize a strike. The vote will continue through Feb. 19.

Education Funding Reform Commission issues framework for school funding solution

The Education Funding Reform Commission issued its report to the General Assembly Feb. 1, highlighting ideas for how the legislature could craft a bipartisan solution to the issue of creating a new and improved school funding formula. The bipartisan framework issued by the Commission comes after the group of 25 lawmakers from both parties and chambers and five members appointed by Gov. Bruce Rauner, met for 75 hours over the last six months.

State’s bill backlog grows

As vendors and healthcare providers who do business with the state of Illinois continue to wait months to be paid for services, a report from the Chicago Tribune this week highlights the dire scenario of Illinois’ backlog of unpaid bills if the state’s ongoing budget impasse continues in Springfield.

Rose receives Conservative Achievement Award

State Sen. Chapin Rose received the Conservative Achievement Award from The American Conservative Union (ACU) for 2016.

Governor delivers his State of the State Address

Governor Bruce Rauner delivered his third State of the State address this week and used the opportunity to highlight some key accomplishments achieved by his administration.

Senate Lawmakers Continue Work On Budget Framework

While no votes were taken this week, the Illinois Senate continued to negotiate and move forward with a comprehensive budget framework that would produce a balanced budget and incorporate structural reforms, which would set the state on a brighter fiscal path in the coming years.

Illinois Tax Filing Season Begins

The Illinois Department of Revenue will begin accepting 2016 state individual income tax returns on Monday, January 23rd, the same date that the Internal Revenue Service begins accepting federal individual income tax returns.

New law protects children from lead

This week, Senate Bill 550 was signed into law, establishing additional standards to further protect Illinois children from possible exposure to lead in drinking water.