* They weren’t the only ones to complain that the ethics bill doesn’t do enough. Most probably believe that. They were, however, the only ones to vote “No.” So, I suppose they get points for consistency, but it might not be so easy to explain back home why they voted against some of the bill’s individual provisions…
Among other things, they voted against a statewide ban on fundraisers during session and the day before and the day after scheduled session dates.
* The funniest part, though, is that right after the ethics bill vote, Rep. Jonathan Carroll (D-Northbrook) rose on the floor to publicly thank the lobbyist who had bought pizzas for the chamber. Yes, you read that right.
Timing is everything, I suppose.
* House Majority Leader Greg Harris laid out the case for this budget proposal at a House Executive Committee hearing today. The governor, he rightly noted, wanted to cut money going into the Local Government Distributive Fund, but that was “left alone” in this budget, as well as transit funding. The state’s bill backlog, he noted, is now just $3.2 billion.
Harris also said…
We have tried to use that FY 21 money in some very strategic ways to enhance our FY 22 budget. Things like making a prepaid deposit to make one large Medicaid payment a month in advance, which would allow us to capture an additional share of the federal enhanced Medicaid model before it expires.
Harris said the budget pays down $2 billion of debt, “and we repay our interfund borrowing.”
* As far as the federal ARPA money goes, Harris said the state is “spending some of that money in early summer,” on things like violence prevention, after-school programming, youth programming, mental health, substance abuse, “things sorely needed in our communities.”
He said legislators will work through the summer to develop a “very targeted and strategic approach” for the balance of the federal money.
Capitol News Illinois…
It also calls for spending about $7.5 billion in state general revenues on Medicaid, plus another $7.4 billion for other human services; $1.9 billion for higher education; another $1.9 billion for public safety; and $1.4 billion for general services.
In addition to those regular items, Harris said, the plan calls for spending about $2.5 billion of the ARPA money Illinois expects to receive. Of that, $1.5 billion would go for things like economic recovery programs to help businesses hardest hit by the pandemic, public health, affordable housing and violence prevention programs like after-school activities, and summer youth employment.
Another $1 billion of the ARPA funds would be directed into the ongoing Rebuild Illinois capital improvements program to accelerate some of the projects slated for construction.
There’s more, but you get the idea.
* Harris also said this…
There are no tax increases in this budget
* The Illinois Chamber thinks otherwise…
Despite impressive out performance of tax revenue growth and $8.1B of federal assistance, the Democrats’ budget still punishes Illinois employers with higher taxes in order to “balance” a bloated state spending plan. We see no meaningful restraint in states spending, only more proposals that force employers to pay higher taxes or decide whether or not to continue their investment in Illinois.
The so-called “loophole” closures are nothing more than tax increases on employers that target, in particular, the manufacturing sector which has lost 50,000 jobs in the last two years. These changes make the Illinois tax code go further outside of the mainstream of state tax policy. Job creators will undoubtedly react negatively.
These tax increases, when combined with extraordinarily punitive changes to our civil liability system, increased regulation, and a potential labor drafted rewrite to the Illinois Constitution, makes the 102nd General Assembly the worst for job creation in a generation.
* Dot points from the governor’s office about what loopholes were closed…
• Cap Corporate NOL Deductions at $100,000 Per Year For the Next 3 Years (~$314M)
When a company suffers a net operating loss (NOL) in a given year, it can carry forward the NOL to future years and deduct it from otherwise taxable income. Capping the amount of NOL deductions to $100,000 will impact the wealthiest businesses, and will add $314 million in corporate income tax revenues, as well as $21 million in local taxes.
• Align Domestic & Foreign-Source Dividend Deduction (~$107M)
Under the Tax Cuts & Jobs Act (TCJA), corporations are allowed to deduct foreign-source dividends at 100% and global intangible low-taxed income (GILTI) at 50%. Aligning the tax treatment of dividends from foreign sources and GILTI to the treatment of domestic dividends will primarily impact large, multi-national corporations with foreign subsidiaries or substantial ownership interests in foreign corporations. This alignment will produce $107 million in corporate income tax revenues for the state and $7 million for local governments.
• Roll Back Trumps’ Tax Cut & Jobs Act 100% Accelerated Depreciation Deduction (~$214M)
The TCJA allows businesses to take a 100% depreciation deduction in the year of purchase for various qualifying assets. By applying the standard depreciation schedule, the state will generate $214 million in business income tax revenues and $14 million for local governments.
• Freeze Phase Out of Corporate Franchise Tax (~$20M)
Public Act 101-0009 was enacted in 2019 and began the gradual phase out of the Corporate Franchise Tax (scheduled to be fully repealed in 2024). The budget freezes the phase out of the repeal by eliminating the first $1,000 in Corporate Franchise Tax currently in place. This change will eliminate the tax burden for the smallest businesses while allowing our state to retain approximately $20 million in revenue.
That’s significantly less than the $900+ million Pritzker proposed. Biodiesel, retailers’ discount, tax credit for private schools and the Blue Collar Jobs Act were all preserved. Adding: The Manufacturers Purchase Credit was also saved
…Adding… Illinois Municipal League…
“The Local Government Distributive Fund (LGDF) serves as a financial foundation for cities, villages and towns across the state and is crucial to keeping local tax burdens as low as possible. When these dollars are reduced, local leaders are forced to make difficult decisions, which include cuts to critical services or increasing taxes and fees to ensure municipal budgets stay balanced.
“We commend Governor JB Pritzker, legislative leaders and state lawmakers for not enacting further cuts to LGDF and increasing state and local revenues by adopting various changes to the state’s tax code.
“Communities need this funding as we recover from the pandemic and economic collapse, due to public demand for even more community programs and services, said Brad Cole, IML Executive Director.
* House committee hearing on the new budget…
House Deputy Republican Leader Tom Demmer: We talked about the $1 billion capital [program], the ARPA dollars going to capital projects. How are those capital projects chosen?
House Majority Leader Greg Harris: Through the normal process by which all capital projects are chosen.
Demmer: What is that process?
Harris: The members make requests and departments make requests and they are fulfilled within an order depending on the category. For instance, IDOT has a five-year plan. Members might have a request, but they have a first, second and third priority and as funds are available they would be funded.
Demmer: Do you know if any requests came from Republicans for those projects?
Harris: Not off the top of my head, no.
Demmer: So, we have a billion dollars of new capital projects that have been available, but it appears that it was only known that those projects were available or eligible for requests from Senate Democratic and House Democratic caucuses?
Harris: Certainly would be happy to come talk.
* Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police press release excerpt…
The trailer bill to the SAFE-T Act, filed and released today on the last day of the spring legislative session, addresses many of our most egregious concerns in the law.
Therefore, the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police supports the trailer bill, HB 3443 SA 5, while acknowledging a concern that the unresolved issues be addressed in a timely manner in the months to come. As a reminder to our members, in January 2021 we strongly opposed the original law, HB 3653 and urged Governor Pritzker to veto it. But he signed it on February 22, 2021, and ever since, we have been in negotiations with the sponsors, Senator Elgie Sims and Representative Justin Slaughter, on a trailer bill. Those negotiations intensified in the last three weeks. We asked the sponsors for an ability to fix language that was either ambiguous or impractical to implement, and we communicated with ILACP members regularly about our desired changes. The trailer bill language addresses most of those concerns and makes training and implementation much easier moving forward.
What the group claims are improvements…
• Body cameras
o Removes the provision that said an officer cannot view his or own video before writing a report.
o Removes the provision that makes it a felony to violate department policy on body cameras.
o Improves the language (in our favor) about what would be a felony for violation of state law regard to use of body cameras. Must be intentional, willing, and a clear attempt to obstruct justice. Eliminates a felony offense for inadvertent mistakes or problems with cameras.
o Clarifies that law enforcement agencies that are in universities, park districts, conversation districts, forest preserves, railroads, etc. (any agencies that are not municipal or county) have a mandatory date of January 1, 2025, for implementation of body cameras.
• Use of force
o Removes the ambiguous language about letting someone flee if they can be apprehended at a later date. The “apprehended later” idea was reinserted in a different place in the trailer bill, but in a different way that initially seems more palatable. We are continuing to review and discuss this.
o Addresses the concern that it was unclear what an “imminent threat” might be when it comes to using deadly force, and removes the undefined idea that a serious crime must have “just” been committed. The word “just” has been removed from the law.
• Chokeholds and tasers: Addresses the definition of chokeholds and removes the provision that says you cannot target the back with a taser.
• Most new training requirements: Now effective January 1, 2022, instead of July 1, 2021
• Obstructing and resisting officers: Clarifies that you can arrest someone for obstructing without an underlying offense. Separates resisting from obstructing.
I may update this post.
*** UPDATE *** From the BIMP…
To provide for the expeditious and timely implementation of the Coronavirus Vaccine Incentive Public Health Promotion authorized by this amendatory Act of the 102nd General Assembly in Section 21.14 of the Illinois Lottery Law and Section 2310-628 of the Department of Public Health Powers and Duties Law, emergency rules implementing the public health promotion may be adopted by the Department of the Lottery and the Department of Public Health in accordance with Section 5-45.
|Unclear on the concept
Monday, May 31, 2021 - Posted by Rich Miller
* Their argument only works if you believe Exelon got a reasonable, fact-based deal in 2016…
Using those 2016 numbers is also like a car salesperson making a pitch about the monthly payment amount instead of the auto’s actual price.
You may recall these folks from the Mel-O-Cream stand they set up outside the Statehouse.
They also claim they’re faxing the governor’s chief negotiator, who is in Springfield this week. But I’m told the governor’s office doesn’t have a Springfield fax machine.
Meanwhile, some progress is being made on the energy bill. It’s not soup yet, though.
|Today’s remap quotable
Monday, May 31, 2021 - Posted by Rich Miller
* Press release…
When the State Legislative Redistricting map was released late Thursday, one thing was unfortunately and immediately clear, the highly concentrated Arab- American and Muslim community in Southwest Suburban Cook County was divided into 4 districts, creating a map that does not even remotely represent one of the largest Arab-American and Muslim communities in the nation.
Retired Judge William Haddad, who Chairs the MENA Independent Government Advisory Council Says,“Our elected officials say they have a keen awareness for diversity, inclusion, and equal representation but what we see with this map is status quo gerrymandering. The Arab-American and Muslim Community in Southwest Suburban Cook County deserve a district but have once again been left behind.”
They make a good point.
* Sponsor’s dot-points about the proposed gaming bill…
• Allows Wintrust Arena, home of the WNBA’s Chicago Sky basketball team, to qualify as a sports betting venue
o Initial license fee of 5 percent of AGR, not to exceed $10 million
o Valid for four years – could be renewed for four years with a $1 million renewal fee to the Gaming Board
o Current law allows seven master sports betting licenses, and no facilities have been awarded licenses to date by the Gaming Board
• Allows bets on Illinois college teams (not individual performances). Bets can only be placed in person, and this has a two-year sunset provision
• Allows stallions owned by non-Illinois breeders to bring their stallions to Illinois to breed with Illinois mares, and allows those foals to qualify for the Illinois Conceived and Foaled racing program.
• Removes the requirements that the stallion owners under the Illinois Standardbred Breeders Fund (the fund used to pay purses for the Illinois Conceived and Foaled program) must be Illinois residents.
• Adds a provision providing that while a non-Illinois based stallion involved in the program shall stand for service at and within Illinois at the time of a foal’s conception, semen from such a stallion may be transported outside of Illinois.
o Permanently removes provisions requiring that a mare must be inseminated in Illinois in order for the offspring to be eligible for the program and that semen from an Illinois stallion may be transported outside of Illinois. Current law provides that these provisions are temporarily suspended from 2018 until 2022.
• Provides that the Racing Board can grant a racino license in southern Cook County at any of its meetings and can reject applications that don’t conform to established procedures.
o The Board can consider amended applications – applicants would have current and future rights of existing Illinois racetracks when the license is granted
• Creates a single renewal date for all casino, video and sports wagering licenses, and allows multi-year licenses across all gaming disciplines
o Changes the duration of the sports wagering supplier license from an annual term to a 4 year term to align the sports wagering supplier license with the casino supplier licensure term of 4 years;
o Allows entities holding several licenses across casino, video and sports wagering with different renewal dates to merge these dates into a single renewal date for all of the respective licenses. This would reduce considerable, duplicative work done by the Gaming Board’s (IGB) Licensing, Legal, Finance, Audit and Investigation units and eliminate similar redundancies for IGB licensees submitting multiple renewal applications; and
o Allows multi-year licenses across all gambling disciplines. This would eliminate the current requirement under the Video Gaming Act for annual license renewals. Initially, all video licenses would be issued for one year, and renewals would be for four years. This change would make the license periods for video gaming terminal operators, manufacturers, distributors and suppliers mirror the periods for casino licenses issued under the Illinois Gambling Act.
• Creates a sales agent and broker license in video gaming, with various requirements
• Provides that licensed casino and racino employees also can work in sports betting positions at the same facility
• Requires casino licenses to have fully executed labor peace agreements
• Changes state taxation of the Casino Queen in the Metro East to its modified AGR, with stipulations
• Limits home rule communities to a fee of no more than $250 per video gaming machine
• Prohibits communities from imposing a “push tax” on video gaming
• Allows qualified fraternal and veterans organizations deriving charters from national organizations to apply for video gaming licenses in communities or counties where video gaming is banned (excluding Cook County and Chicago)
Remember, it’s just a bill. Things can change, things can die.
|*** UPDATED x2 *** Ethics reform bill filed
Monday, May 31, 2021 - Posted by Rich Miller
* If you’re watching our “cheat sheet” post, you know that House Amendment 2 to SB539 was just filed. That’s the new ethics language. Click here to read it and I’ll go through it with you in a bit.
…Adding… OK, let’s start with this…
No legislator or executive branch constitutional officer shall engage in compensated lobbying of the governing body of a municipality, county, or township, or an official thereof, on behalf of any lobbyist or lobbying entity that is registered to lobby the General Assembly or the executive branch of the State of Illinois.
Same applies to county, municipality and township electeds and appointeds.
From the provided dot points…
Prohibits State officials, including legislators, and officials of counties, municipalities, and townships from lobbying for compensation on behalf of a lobbyist or lobbying entity registered to lobby their unit of government. Violation of the prohibition is Class A misdemeanor. It excludes communications: (a) within the scope of the officials public duties; (2) by an attorney in connection with the practice of law or in the course of representing a client in any judicial, quasi-judicial, or administrative proceeding; and (3) by legislators in the ordinary course of employment where primary purpose of employment is not to influence government action.
No person who is appointed to an affected office shall: (i) serve as an officer of a candidate political committee; or (ii) be a candidate who is designated as the candidate to be supported by a candidate political committee.
There’s a provision for a new limited activity campaign committee that was previously floated by the Senate Dems. From the dot points…
Requires that any individual whose appointment to any executive agency, board, or commission is subject to Senate confirmation and controls a political committee must institute a freeze on funds going into or out of the committee immediately upon being named as an appointee. Creates a new kind of committee, “limited activity committee,” for those individuals. A limited activity committee may not accept contributions, except for personal funds in order to pay for maintenance expenses.
* Economic interest statements…
The interest (if constructively controlled by the person making the statement) of a spouse or any other party, shall be considered to be the same as the interest of the person making the statement.
It goes on to mandate reporting of certain things, including “the name of each unit of government of which the
filer or his or her spouse was an employee, contractor, or office holder during the preceding calendar year” along with…
each person known to the filer to be registered as a lobbyist with any unit of government in the State of Illinois: (i) with whom the filer maintains an economic 14 relationship, or (ii) who is a member of the filer’s family.
To be clear, I’m skipping through this and not including some things, so if you have any questions, search the bill before asking why you didn’t see such-and-such in this quickie take.
* No legislative or executive branch campaign fundraisers are allowed anywhere on session days (previously only banned in Sangamon County) and the day before the legislature is in session.
* The state has no revolving door law for the executive branch or legislators. The proposal would impose a 6-month waiting period. Republicans had demanded 12 months. [Adding from a pal: It’s 6 months or until the end of their term, whichever is shorter unless they finish their term in which case they can lobby the next day.]
* Executive inspectors general can now initiate investigations without prior approval of the Executive Ethics Commission based on complaints, but only within one year of the alleged violation.
* The Legislative Ethics Commission is prohibited from proposing or enforcing rules mandating that the Legislative Inspector General must receive prior approval from the Commission before initiating an investigation.
* Legislators who resign or retire during their terms will not be paid a salary for the full month. Instead it’ll be pro-rated. Right now, a member can resign on the first of the month and get a pensionable check for the entire month. This starts with the next General Assembly, of course. It’s not legal to reduce or increase legislative compensation during their terms.
* Provided dot points on lobbying reforms…
Local Lobbyist Registration: Requires persons who undertake to lobby officials of counties, municipalities, and townships to register with the Secretary of State and submit expenditure disclosures like lobbyists at the State level.
Lobbying Definition: Expands the definition of “lobbying” to include soliciting other to make communications.
Consultant Disclosure: Requires lobbyists and lobbying entities to disclose persons or entities they hire to provide advisory services such as strategy development or guidance on lobbying or influencing. Excludes (i) employees of the lobbyist or lobbying entity and (ii) attorneys providing legal services, such as drafting and rendering legal opinions on the effect of government action.
Lobbyist Training: Requires ethics and sexual harassment training to be completed by lobbyists prior to their registration being considered complete, rather than within 30 days of registration.
Lobbying Preemption: Allows Chicago to continue to enforce its ordinances related to restrictions on lobbying.
That consultant disclosure is a good first step. They’re becoming all too common.
*** UPDATE 1 *** The bill has been amended to include a provision allowing campaign expenditures for child and elder care that the Senate has already passed.
*** UPDATE 2 *** The Senate Republicans and Democrats held a joint press conference to talk up the ethics bill this afternoon. That’s not a common occurrence in these parts.
* There’s been some head-scratching about the Senate Executive Appointments Committee’s refusal to take up the nominations of Omer Osman to run IDOT, Mark Smith to head DCFS and Rob Jeffreys to direct IDOC. Their nominations have languished forever, but the Senate didn’t seem too concerned about it, even though these are the top three Black men nominated by the governor to run important agencies.
Finally, all three were favorably reported to the Senate floor during a committee hearing this morning.
* Despite Senate Republican pressure, however, the committee did not take up Pritzker’s nominations for the Prisoner Review Board. From the Senate GOP…
“The Senate Executive Appointments Committee’s continued lack of transparency on the Prisoner Review Board appointments is unacceptable. Our caucus is frustrated and disappointed that the Chair chose not to call Gov. Pritzker’s ten pending PRB appointees, that, just days ago, the Senate voted unanimously to waive their posting notice requirements so they could be heard in today’s committee. Ten unconfirmed people, four of whom have had their appointments pulled and then reappointed the next day, are making decisions on whether to release violent felons back into the community.
“Nearly three-fourths of the current acting PRB members are making serious, life-altering, and potentially dangerous decisions without even the basic transparency of a hearing. Gov. Pritzker may be comfortable ruling the state by executive order, but the Illinois Senate Republicans will not accept his attempts at directing them to abdicate their constitutional legislative responsibility.
“The Caucus will continue to fight for the public’s right to hear these appointees and they will not be silenced by political threats or ploys.”
Background is here and here if you need it.
|Pass The Omnibus Energy Bill And Let’s Make History!
Monday, May 31, 2021 - Posted by Advertising Department
[The following is a paid advertisement.]
Passing the omnibus energy legislation creates thousands of jobs and puts Illinois on a path to 100% clean energy. Specifically, this history making legislation:
• Expands and fully funds the Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) to 40% by 2030
• Creates thousands of jobs
• Locks in $1.2 billion in savings for Illinois ratepayers
• Establishes the most progressive labor and equity standards for renewable energy in the nation
• Ensures RPS goals are met with combination of utility scale, rooftop and community solar
• Helps businesses, nonprofits and schools to help offset their electricity bills with expanded rooftop and community solar
• Establishes a policy framework for energy storage expansion
• Builds out electric vehicle infrastructure and helps to create an EV ecosystem
• Ends formula rates
• Creates job training and workforce development programs to ensure clean energy workforce reflects the diversity of our State
• Establishes a Climate Bank through the IFA to provide low interest loans and creates seed capital program through DCEO to help establish minority-owned businesses
The time for talk is over. Now it’s time to vote. Pass the Omnibus Energy Bill and create a prosperous clean and renewable energy future for all of Illinois. For more information, visit www.pathto100.net.
* Remember that this is a holiday weekend, so numbers for cases and deaths have historically been on the low side because people aren’t being tested or aren’t in their offices to do the reporting…
The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) today reported 521 new confirmed and probable cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Illinois, including 33 additional deaths. In addition, more than 67% of Illinois adults have received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose and more than 50% of Illinois adults are fully vaccinated, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Cook County: 1 male 30s, 1 female 50s, 3 males 50s, 2 females 60s, 7 males 60s, 2 females 70s, 2 males 70s, 2 females 80s, 5 males 80s, 1 female 90s, 1 male 90s
DuPage County: 1 male 50s, 1 female 80s, 1 male 80s
Kane County: 1 male 70s
Lake County: 1 female 50s, 1 female 70s
Currently, IDPH is reporting a total of 1,382,186 cases, including 22,827 deaths, in 102 counties in Illinois. The age of cases ranges from younger than one to older than 100 years. Within the past 24 hours, laboratories have reported 25,692 specimens for a total of 24,616,087. As of last night, 1,093 individuals in Illinois were reported to be in the hospital with COVID-19. Of those, 294 patients were in the ICU and 167 patients with COVID-19 were on ventilators.
The preliminary seven-day statewide positivity for cases as a percent of total test from May 24-30, 2021 is 1.6%. The preliminary seven-day statewide test positivity from May 24-30, 2021 is 2.0%.
A total of 11,291,906 vaccines have been administered in Illinois as of last midnight. The seven-day rolling average of vaccines administered daily is 50,162 doses. Yesterday, 22,255 doses were reported administered in Illinois.
*All data are provisional and will change. In order to rapidly report COVID-19 information to the public, data are being reported in-time. Information is constantly being entered into an electronic system and the number of cases and deaths can change as additional information is gathered. For health questions about COVID-19, call the hotline at 1-800-889-3931 or email email@example.com.
|May 31, 2021 cheat sheet
Monday, May 31, 2021 - Posted by Rich Miller
* These have been popular posts in the past, so let’s do it again. If you catch any additions, updates or see any errors, please let me know in comments or text me if you have my number. I will update this when I can. Lots going on, so be patient with me, please.
Let’s start with packages and bills that do not yet have a firmly identified vehicle…
* Energy package
* Parental notification repeal
* No previously identified vehicle bills are awaiting amendments.
* Amendments filed to vehicles and awaiting action…
* HB 900 - Capital reappropriation (SA1 filed) *** SA2 FILED ***
* Bills awaiting action in the Senate…
* SB 521 - Gaming items *** (HAs 1, 3, and 4 adopted) ***
* Bills awaiting action in the House…
* HB 562 - FOID (SA1 adopted)
* HB 2567 – University procurement (SA2 adopted)
* HB 2643 - Unemployment Insurance
* SA2 to HB 550 - Legislative COLA suspension
* “Passed Both Houses”…
* HB 2908 - Elected school board compromise
* SB 166 – Social Equity pillar trailer (HA2 adopted)
* HB 3743 - Telecom sunset extension
* HB 806 - Licensing Omnibus (SA2 adopted)
* HB 2621 - Affordable Housing package (SAs 1, 3, 4 adopted)
* SB 2294 – Medicaid Working Group package (HAs 1, 2, 3 adopted)
* SB 508 – Property tax package (HAs 2, 5 adopted)
* SB 825 – Elections omnibus (HA1 and HA2 adopted)
* HB 3443 – Criminal justice pillar trailer (SA5 adopted)
*** REP. HARPER MOVES TO RECONSIDER ***
* HB 3308 – Telehealth
* HB 2620 – Liquor omnibus (SAs 1, 2, 4, 5 adopted.)
* SB 539 – Ethics omnibus (HA2 adopted)
* SB 2800 – Budget (HA1 FILED) *** HA2 and HA3 ADOPTED***
* HB3743 - Telecom sunset extension (SAs 1, 2 adopted)
* I told subscribers about this on Saturday. The Politico story is a bit convoluted, but it’s so far the only other outlet to have covered this exceedingly rare if not unprecedented move, so here you go…
A big shift in Democratic leadership was announced Saturday. Rep. LaToya Greenwood of East St. Louis takes over for Rep. Carol Ammons of Urbana as House majority conference chair.
The move, which drew praise from Democratic moderates, came after an apparent power grab on the House floor.
Rep. Delia Ramirez was taking her turn presiding as speaker when Rep. Terra Costa Howard’s bill on handling “unfounded” DCFS reports came up. Ramirez said she needed a break and stepped aside, allowing Ammons to take the gavel — a position that requires neutrality toward lawmakers and legislation.
Ammons opposed the DCFS bill and tapped Rep. Mary Flowers, a fellow Democrat critical of the measure, to question Costa-Howard. Onlookers said Flowers was abusive and that Ammons allowed her to go on too long.
Lawmakers said Ammons misused the podium and that the whole episode looked choreographed, though Flowers says it wasn’t.
Rep. Rita Mayfield also made a move to reconsider the vote before that was withdrawn. The bill passed.
In announcing Ammons’ exit, House Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch said, “I am grateful for the work she has done” and that he’s “happy” to have Greenwood on board.
As subscribers know, there’s more to it than that, but a member of leadership getting the boot with just a few days left in session is pretty big news.
* This morning…
Monday, May 31, 2021 - Posted by Rich Miller
* Clifford is a fine young man…
Anything on your mind right now?
* House Floor Amendment 1 to SB2800. Click here.
…Adding… A few more…
* Sen. David Koehler’s FOID bill: SAM1 to HB562
* Rep. Sonya Harper’s trailer bill for the new equity law: HAM2 to SB166
* Rep. Robert Rita’s gaming bill: HAM1 to SB521
I’ll have more for subscribers in the morning, including a summary of the new elections bill.
*** UPDATE *** This is from that Rita bill…
…Adding… Press release…
SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Association of Rehabilitation Facilities, representing community providers of services and programs for thousands of Illinoisans with intellectual and developmental disabilities, today issued the following statement as lawmakers prepare to vote on a Fiscal Year 2022 state budget and adjourn the spring legislative session:
“Our mantra this spring has been clear: we must do better on funding I/DD services in Illinois. The proposed state budget legislators have put together does not meet that standard.
A federal decree requires Illinois to do better, by providing better funding for services, staff wages, and reducing wait lists for services. The Guidehouse rate study commissioned by the Department of Human Services and released late last year made clear it will take a significant investment starting this coming fiscal year to make real progress.
The Governor’s proposed funding increase of $122 million – the amount that is included in the budget being considered today – is simply not nearly enough to meet the tremendous needs of the people we serve. This budget does not:
• Fully fund the rate study, nor an agreement among our service providers and the labor unions representing their workers to increase state support
• Support 28,000 individuals currently receiving services and more than 17,000 on the state waiting list for services
• Fully fund a single priority in the rate study, including wage increases for staff. In Chicago, frontline staff will barely make above the city’s increased minimum wage
• Spend a dime of the state’s $8 billion in federal relief funds on I/DD services and supports
Other critical, core government services and programs are receiving large budget increases and amounts, including K-12 education, hospitals and nursing homes. But this budget ignores the stark reality that Illinois ranks 47th in spending on disability services.
Our ask today is simple: amend the proposed state budget to provide a full $193 million to fully fund the rate study starting Jan. 1, 2022. We must do better, before it’s too late.”
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