* Capitol News Illinois…
A state lawmaker advanced a bill Tuesday that would lift a 1911 state prohibition of alcohol consumption on trains because, she said, the existing law is not enforced or obeyed.
“As most people probably don’t realize, … this bill was passed in 1911, pre-Prohibition,” Rep. Terra Costa Howard, D-Glen Ellyn, said during a House transportation committee hearing, “and it prohibits the drinking of alcohol on any train, train station; it also requires our engineers to make arrests.”
She said the 1911 law is not only not enforced, but public transit is generally viewed as an alternative to drunk driving.
“Isn’t there a bar car on the train?” asked Rep. Natalie Manley, a Joliet Democrat who was one of two lawmakers to vote against Costa Howard’s House Bill 3878 in committee.
“On some trains, yes there are,” the bill’s sponsor replied.
* Hannah Meisel at the Daily Line…
Fresh off of a legislative win capping the price of insulin in Illinois, State Rep. Will Guzzardi (D-Chicago) and State Sen. Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) are working to create a Prescription Drug Affordability Board, which would limit what Illinoisans would pay for certain medications.
Guzzardi originally introduced HB 3493 last spring as part of a six-bill package aimed at bringing down the cost of prescription drugs, tackling an issue typically reserved for federal lawmakers. But the bill failed to advance out of the House’s Prescription Drug Affordability Committee in March, as three Democratic lawmakers voted against the measure.
A new amendment to the bill addressed some of the concerns that stalled the bill last year, Guzzardi said, adding he hoped to see the bill pass out of committee in the coming weeks. However, a hearing on the bill set for Wednesday by the Prescription Drug Affordability Committee was cancelled.
The bill establishes a five-person board to oversee drug prices in Illinois and set the upper limit based on what most Illinoisans can afford to pay for prescription drugs. Using market data and research compiled by a 21-member Prescription Drug Affordability Stakeholder Council also created by the bill, the board would essentially provide drug companies with a figure representing the maximum amount they should sell their medications for in Illinois.
* Alex Nitkin and Hannah Meisel at the Daily Line…
Cook County leaders vowed Tuesday to fight a proposed state law that would merge the independent police department for the county Forest Preserves District with the Cook County Sheriff’s Office.
Sponsored by State Rep. Fred Crespo (D-Hoffman Estates), HB2297 would eliminate the Forest Preserves District’s “authority to appoint and maintain a police force.”
Crespo said he filed the bill after a 2018 incident in which a woman wearing a shirt with the Puerto Rican flag on it was harassed by a man repeatedly asking her if she was a U.S. citizen. Video the woman shot on her phone shows a forest preserve police officer nearby ignoring her requests to intervene in the harassment. The officer resigned from the department without being disciplines.
Since then, the Cook County Inspector General issued a report finding an unnamed county commissioner had pressured a forest preserve officer to throw out a political ally’s $250 parking ticket issued for parking in a spot reserved for people with disabilities.