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Rauner vetoes DHFS managed care performance audit bill as part of another big Friday dump

Friday, Sep 22, 2017

* Here’s the Friday dump, except for the veto message for HB 3449, which is below

Veto Message for HB 2977

To the Honorable Members of
The Illinois House of Representatives
100th General Assembly:

Today I veto House Bill 2977 from the 100th General Assembly, which requires all Illinois elementary schools include a unit of cursive in their curriculum before students complete 5th grade.

This legislation constitutes yet another unfunded mandate for school districts that will not protect the health or safety of Illinois students. If the General Assembly believes that cursive writing instruction should be required in elementary schools because it will improve student outcomes, it should be included in the Illinois State Learning Standards and funded accordingly.

Therefore, pursuant to Section 9(b) of Article IV of the Illinois Constitution of 1970, I hereby return House Bill 2977, entitled “AN ACT concerning education” with the foregoing objections, vetoed in its entirety.

Sincerely,

Bruce Rauner
GOVERNOR

Signing Statement for HB 3488

To the Honorable Members of
The Illinois House of Representatives
100th General Assembly:

Today I sign House Bill 3488, which provides for responsible and respectful processes surrounding the disposition of remains of low-income decedents by providing better information-sharing with families regarding their options when a loved one passes as well as facilitating assistance of the medical, anatomical, biological and mortuary sciences.

I encourage the sponsor and advocates to continue to work collaboratively with the Department of Public Health to ensure that the goals of this legislation can be implemented in an effective and appropriate manner, even if further legislation is necessary to make sure the process contained is administratively sound.

Sincerely,

Bruce Rauner
GOVERNOR

Veto Message for HB 3745

To the Honorable Members of
The Illinois House of Representatives
100th General Assembly:

Today I veto House Bill 3745 from the 100th General Assembly, which requires school boards to allow community groups to post free after-school program information in a designated space on each school campus.

Although I applaud community groups and organizations who provide high-quality, affordable programming for children, this bill is an unfunded mandate that will not protect the health or safety of students. School personnel should be allowed professional discretion related to information shared by the school. While individual requirements such as this may not create significant costs to schools and districts, the accumulation of layers of unfunded mandates imposed on our schools simultaneously consume scarce resources and constrain schools’ flexibility in determining what is in the best interest of their students.

Therefore, pursuant to Section 9(b) of Article IV of the Illinois Constitution of 1970, I hereby return House Bill 3745, entitled “AN ACT concerning education” with the foregoing objections, vetoed in its entirety.

Sincerely,

Bruce Rauner
GOVERNOR

Signing Statement for HB 3904

Today I sign House Bill 3904, which represents a nationally significant bipartisan accomplishment toward reforming Illinois’ criminal justice system.

This legislation permanently codifies the existence of a Women’s Division within the Department of Corrections which will allow the Department to better serve the female corrections population with operations that specifically focus on the distinctive needs of the women in its care. This signature is accompanied by a commitment by the House and Senate sponsors to swiftly pass trailer legislation removing the requirement of Senate approval for the individual leading this new division. The appointment of a Chief Administrator for the Women’s Division of the Department of Corrections should lie solely within the discretion of the Director of the Department of Corrections. As the Director is confirmed with the advice and consent of Senate, he or she has been entrusted with leading the Department and should therefore be able to choose a candidate he or she deems fit to oversee the Women’s Division of the Department. I look forward to the General Assembly fulfilling this commitment, and the implementation of this historic program.

The goal of the legislation is both laudable and important to ensure that the corrections system in our state continues to be oriented around rehabilitation and the needs of those it serves. Ultimately, programs like this contribute to future reductions of the prison population and recidivism rates.

Sincerely,

Bruce Rauner
GOVERNOR

Veto Message for SB 321

To the Honorable Members of
The Illinois Senate,
100th General Assembly:

Today I veto Senate Bill 321 from the 100th General Assembly, which provides that the Auditor General initiate a performance audit of the Department of Healthcare and Family Services.

The audit requirement is specific to certain managed care provisions and can be performed as part of a larger internal or external audit of the Department’s managed care program. The Auditor General has authority to examine the Department and programs such as these every two years. Furthermore, the Department has worked on transparent implementation of the cited programs that has included involvement by the Medicaid Advisory Committee. Through this process the Department continues to diligently work toward compliance with all statutory requirements. Requiring a separate audit is expensive, time consuming, and unnecessary.

Therefore, pursuant to Section 9(b) of Article IV of the Illinois Constitution of 1970, I hereby return Senate Bill 321, entitled “AN ACT concerning State government,” with the foregoing objections, vetoed in its entirety.

Sincerely,

Bruce Rauner
GOVERNOR

Veto Message for SB 419

To the Honorable Members of
The Illinois Senate,
100th General Assembly:

Today I veto Senate Bill 419 from the 100th General Assembly. This legislation proposes two changes, both of which will likely increase the unfunded liabilities of the respective pension funds they impact. First, it allows a downstate firefighter to buy into a pension fund’s Tier 1 benefit system. Second, the legislation provides for a retrospective cost of living adjustment payment.

Illinois’ pension systems are in crisis. Decades of poor funding decisions and generous benefits have pushed many downstate pension funds to dangerously low funding ratios. Furthermore, the Firemen’s Annuity and Pension Fund of Chicago, which is at issue in this legislation, is only 21% funded. This makes it one of the worst-funded large pension systems in America. We owe it to taxpayers and pension beneficiaries to focus on legislation to bring stability to the pension funds to reduce pension debt.

This bill attempts to retroactively institute service credits in a downstate pension fund under a benefit system that the State closed off due to its unsustainability. These service credits are instituted without a full and accurate accounting of their cost. Furthermore, this bill requires the Chicago firemen’s pension fund to pay a retrospective cost of living increase on top of benefits already paid. This will increase costs for the fund, decrease its dangerously low funding levels, and ultimately drive still higher property taxes on Chicago taxpayers. Given the dire state of Illinois’ pension systems, any legislation that risks increasing pension debt levels ought to be heavily scrutinized for the long-term benefit of both taxpayers and pension beneficiaries.

Therefore, pursuant to Section 9(b) of Article IV of the Illinois Constitution of 1970, I hereby return Senate Bill 419, entitled “AN ACT concerning local government”, with the foregoing objections, vetoed in its entirety.

Sincerely,

Bruce Rauner
GOVERNOR

- Posted by Rich Miller        

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