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It’s just a bill

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

* WTTW

An Illinois legislator says striking seven words from the state’s massive energy bill would clear the way for more than $2 billion in new wind energy projects.

State Sen. Don Harmon, D-Oak Park, filed a bill in January to remove language concerning wind projects from the Future Energy Jobs Bill, which passed in December and was hailed as one of the most significant pieces of state energy legislation in the U.S. in decades.

The bill included a provision that requires the Illinois Commerce Commission to develop certification and training standards for wind developers – a process that took the commission about two years when the state established similar standards for developers of solar installations and electric vehicle charging stations.

“The bill created significant uncertainty that prevented investment in Illinois by the wind industry, which makes no sense,” Harmon said in a press release.

* Press release…

State Senator Daniel Biss’ measure to bring small donor matching to Illinois to ensure government better reflects the people it serves advanced out of the Illinois Senate Tuesday.

“Everyone who is frustrated today by the influence that corporations and billionaires wield over politicians and the policy decisions they make should support the concept of small donor matching,” said Biss, an Evanston Democrat.

“This is one way we can restore the balance of power in government and ensure that average people – those who represent Main Street America and middle-class values, not Wall Street and the corporate class – have greater influence over the decisions that are made in Springfield and elsewhere.”

Senate Bill 1424 would establish a small donor matching system for statewide races in Illinois, including governor, attorney general, comptroller, treasurer, secretary of state, state senators and state representatives. The system empowers ordinary people to compete financially and ideologically with special interests and wealthy donors. It also opens up the playing field to more diverse candidates for office and leads to more options at the ballot box.

Senate Bill 1424 would weaken the influence of money in Illinois elections by doing the following:

    Contributions between $25 and $150 from local donors would be matched 6:1 by public funds.
    Limits would be set on the amount of public funds available to each candidate.
    Candidates would not be able to accept contributions of more than $500 from a single donor.
    Under the legislation, the General Assembly could appropriate money to a special fund in the state treasury. The funds would be either $1 per Illinois resident or 1/20th of 1 percent of the state’s annual budget, whichever is greater.

* Press release…

Americans for Responsible Solutions (ARS), the gun violence prevention organization founded by former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and retired NASA astronaut Captain Mark Kelly, applauded the Illinois House Judiciary Committee today for advancing the Gun Dealer Licensing Act (SB 1657) to help slow the flow of illegal guns in Illinois, and urged the full House to act to save lives. The bill would give state authorities and law enforcement the tools to encourage better business practices among federally licensed gun dealers and hold corrupt dealers accountable to slow the flow of illegal gun trafficking in Illinois and help keep guns out of the wrong hands.

The bill, which was passed by the Illinois Senate last month, would give state authorities and law enforcement the tools to encourage better business practices among federally licensed gun dealers and hold corrupt dealers accountable to slow the flow of illegal gun trafficking in Illinois and help keep guns out of the wrong hands.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

22 Comments
  1. - Say What? - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 3:12 pm:

    Wind farms are producing a pitiful small amount of electricity.

    This is classical liberalism at its worst. Everyone one feels good about windmills, but it is not a viable solution. Hydro-electrical dams are much better.


  2. - Anonymous - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 3:18 pm:

    Sb1657 is a solution in search of a problem. That “solution” being arbitrarily shutting down federally regulated firearm license holders. The problem that needs to be solved is an entire segment of the population with no jobs, bad education, and no hope coupled with a lucrative drug trade that fuels gang violence.


  3. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 3:22 pm:

    Great idea for more spending from a liberal democrat.

    Never mind the state can’t pay it’s current bills let’s fund campaigns now.

    Some math wiz.


  4. - Small town taxpayer - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 3:31 pm:

    ===Hydro-electrical dams are much better.===

    Hydro-electrical dams in Illinois are also producing ‘a pitiful small amount of electricity.’ I can think of only a handful of small hydro dams in the state. There is much more potential for wind energy creation in Illinois than there is potential for hydro energy creation. Maybe the ICC should be given a deadline for the creation of the necessary standards.


  5. - Anon221 - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 3:40 pm:

    From the WTTW article: “The legislation, Senate Bill 71, passed the Senate by a vote of 47 to 3 on April 25 and has moved on to the House. The bill has received support from environmental and labor groups, including the Environmental Law and Policy Center, Illinois Environmental Council, Laborers’ International Union of North America Midwest Region and the Citizens Utility Board.”

    Ah… but does Exelon approve??? Cue their lobbyists in 3,2,1…


  6. - OneMan - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 3:40 pm:

    Got polled (with a touch of bias) on the gun bill (automated) and they asked if you owned a gun, not answering the question was not an option.


  7. - Disinterestred Party - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 3:42 pm:

    Regarding the wind energy regulations, yes overregulation “creates uncertainty and prevents investment”. Now, just apply the same thinking to the rest of the businesses in IL, and we will begin to turn the state around.


  8. - Joe M - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 3:47 pm:

    I hope this isn’t support for the billionaire owners of a sham called Clean Line Energy that wants to run high voltage direct current transmission lines across Missouri, Iowa and Illinois farm lands eastward to provide Iowa wind energy to the East coast. Critics report that their lines would only be carrying a small amount of wind-produced energy - the rest would be from traditional resources.


  9. - blue dog dem - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 3:53 pm:

    Joe M. Bingo.


  10. - Biscuit Head - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 3:59 pm:

    As noted the first generation of windmills didn’t create much energy. And one reason for that might be that they were really expensive and prone to break down.
    I’m not ready to give up on the technology yet since wind seems to be the one thing that we have plenty of - but it better start (im)proving itself soon.


  11. - Ron Burgundy - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 4:07 pm:

    –Senate Bill 1424 would establish a small donor matching system for statewide races in Illinois, including governor…–

    Effective ASAP. Right, Senator?


  12. - Say What? - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 4:08 pm:

    Hydro-electricity never got off of the ground in Illinois because Samuel Insull was dead set against it. It would have cut his profits.

    The MWRD was supposed to have hydro-electric dams on its waterways. It never happened.


  13. - just the facts - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 4:18 pm:

    Wind energy is subsidized at a rate 3 times higher than we pay as end users. It is economically unsustainable absent large government subsidies. Exelon owns more windmills in Illinois than anyone else. Why? Because the government guarantees you will make money doing it. Ironically, they back off capacity at their nuclear power plants 2-5% when the wind is blowing but realize zero cost savings (they can’t send anyone home as a result and the wind could stop at any moment). In other words, you pay twice…. you pay the guy to sit at the power plant and you pay the tremendous subsidies which put these windmills up. That money should be invested in R&D for effective energy storage. Once we have mastered that, windmills will make far more sense.


  14. - Six Degrees of Separation - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 4:30 pm:

    Most of the environmentally-minded groups are trying to remove dams from the state’s rivers (noticeably the Fox), not throw in a bunch more in the hopes of harnessing the state’s meager hydro potential. There are a few hydro success stories in the state (such as the city of Peru’s plant on the Illinois River that supplies them with juice at about half the other surrounding towns’ rates) but most towns don’t have a river that size running next to them. Also, the barge operators as well as the river ecology would be adversely affected by having to go through dozens more sets of locks, if the Illinois or the Mississippi were to be dammed up everywhere there is a river town in need of electricity.


  15. - Clark - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 4:34 pm:

    “Limits would be set on the amount of public funds available to each candidate.”

    My preference would be $0.


  16. - wordslinger - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 4:49 pm:

    –This is classical liberalism at its worst.–

    What’s that, John Locke with a hangover?

    That slays them in the political philosophy classes.


  17. - W Flag - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 5:46 pm:

    @wordslinger:

    John Locke was not fond of alcohol and refused a diplomatic post for that reason.


  18. - wordslinger - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 5:49 pm:

    –John Locke was not fond of alcohol and refused a diplomatic post for that reason.–

    Not your typical classical liberal.


  19. - Jerry - Tuesday, May 16, 17 @ 6:47 pm:

    SB1657 does absolutely NOTHING to “to help slow the flow of illegal guns in Illinois”. It will; accomplish only one thing - put 95% of Illinois Federal Firearms License holders out of business with expensive and open-ended fees and requirements, while the illegal gun trade will continue on completely unaffected. Another big “FU” to law-abiding FFLs and gun owners who will find their purchase options limited to a few dealers who will charge hundreds of dollars more per gun than we can now buy them for.

    This bill is going to get killed when it gets voted on and rightly so. But it is sickening that Illinois Democrats continually introduce bills aimed at the law abiding while the gangbangers and other criminals causing all the problems get off with a wrist slap. Last month a Mount Prosspect woman, Simone Mousheh, got probation for selling guns to gang members. That’s the low-hanging fruit, but Illinois refuses to go after people like her and instead take out their wrath on the rest of us who do nothing wrong.


  20. - PublicServant - Wednesday, May 17, 17 @ 5:39 am:

    Set up a Wind Farm downwind of the Capitol and it’ll power Illinois and half of our surrounding states.


  21. - Chicago Guns Matter - Wednesday, May 17, 17 @ 9:51 am:

    How does running small guns shops out of business but giving a pass to WalMart, BassPro and Cabelas stem the crime in Chicago?

    How many gun shops are in Chicago?

    It’s funny how the Brady Campaign distorts one statistic, then ignores a meaningful one, the one called “Time-to-crime”, which means on the average, that a decade passes in between a gun’s legal sale and its recovery at a crime scene and trace request.

    Good luck blaming Chuck’s gun shop for a gun sold 10 years ago in a legal, background-checked transaction.

    But, wait, we don’t need facts, we have Sen Harmon and Rep Willis to lead the way with emotional rhetoric.


  22. - Anonymous - Friday, May 19, 17 @ 8:55 am:

    Jerry- “…it is sickening that Illinois Democrats continually introduce bills aimed at the law abiding while the gangbangers and other criminals causing all the problems get off with a wrist slap.”

    What is sickening is how NRA continually uses and sells out blacks. NRA lobbyist Todd Vandermyde failed to oppose Sen. Raoul’s “sentencing enhancement” bill, which would impose harsh penalties for the mere possession of a gun, regardless of whether or not it is used in a crime. Since UUW can be a felony for the first offense, this legislation will mostly impact the black community in dangerous areas of Chicago and Cook County who feel they are forced to carry a gun for their survival.

    NRA sued on behalf of Chicago resident Shawn Gowder, who had a misdemeanor UUW which prevented him from being issued a Chicago handgun permit, and NRA made $1.3 million after they hopped onto the Otis McDonald lawsuit late in the game.

    Black people in Chicago make profitable plaintiffs for NRA, then they get sold out in NRA bills, like when Vandermyde put Duty to Inform in Rep. Brandon Phelps 2013 concealed carry bill, because he cut a deal with the police unions. It’s a race hustle, and NRA lawyers make money on the lawsuits.


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