Capitol - Your Illinois News Radar » *** UPDATED x5 - Senators to be sent home, no deadline change - House cancels all three session days this week *** Harmon asks SDem members to stay put while leaders figure out what to do about the coming Snowpocalypse
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*** UPDATED x5 - Senators to be sent home, no deadline change - House cancels all three session days this week *** Harmon asks SDem members to stay put while leaders figure out what to do about the coming Snowpocalypse

Monday, Jan 31, 2022 - Posted by Rich Miller

* Senate President Don Harmon just told his caucus members to stay put in their districts if they aren’t down in Springfield right now. The National Weather Service in Lincoln is predicting snow “in excess of 12 inches with locally higher amounts possible” for the Springfield area Tuesday night through Thursday. I’ve seen one model that predicted 27 inches. But, who really knows? Snow is difficult to predict.

Anyway, Harmon said he may have to send members back home tomorrow morning so nobody is forced to drive home in the storm.

Harmon told his members that he, Speaker Welch and Gov. Pritzker are connecting on a final plan about what to do with the budget address and the State of the State address scheduled for Wednesday. The budget address date is in state law (click here), so it’s not clear what will happen.

Because of COVID, the Senate wasn’t even invited to the House chambers to watch the address, so no big deal if they don’t show. But the House Speaker’s office hasn’t yet responded to questions about whether they expect to have a quorum in town, although several folks are already here.

This post will likely be updated.

*** UPDATE 1 *** From the House Democrats’ chief of staff…

URGENT update on scheduling


Please be advised that due to the winter storm heading toward Central Illinois, we will be canceling session this week (all three days). Staff will be following up with you shortly to ensure that everyone is notified as soon as possible.

Additional information on scheduling will be forthcoming, but virtual committees will continue as planned this week.

Stay safe, and I’ll be in touch,


*** UPDATE 2 *** Jordan Abudayyeh…

The governor plans to deliver a State of the State and budget address on Wednesday. Details will be forthcoming.

*** UPDATE 3 *** A tippity-top Senate Dem says the chamber will be sending members home in the morning, but will not be changing its deadline schedule. So, February 10 will remain as the Senate’s deadline for substantive bills out of committee.

*** UPDATE 4 *** Formal news media announcement…

“Difficult if not impossible” travel conditions force session cancelation

SPRINGFIELD – With the National Weather Service warning motorists that travel across the central portion of Illinois this week could be “difficult if not impossible,” the leaders of the Illinois General Assembly have canceled the House and Senate sessions scheduled this week.

The forecast calls for several inches of snow combined with icy conditions and 30 mph wind gusts in Central Illinois. Similarly treacherous conditions are expected elsewhere in the state. Weather and safety officials urge drivers not to travel, and legislative leaders opted to cancel session to keep safe the staff, lawmakers and hundreds of others who travel to the Capitol for session days.

“With the National Weather Service forecasting a winter storm for Central Illinois that could produce up to two feet of snow, it is in our best interest to cancel session for this week,” said House Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch. “The winter storm warning says travel will be dangerous and we do not want to put people’s lives at risk while they’re on the road to and from Springfield.”

Senate President Harmon said the Senate would be in session at noon on Tuesday but the rest of the week is canceled.

“Across the state people are being told to avoid unnecessary travel and to not put themselves at risk. We will turn to our remote committee process to get the work of the people done and look forward to a break in the weather and a safe return to the Capitol hopefully next week,” Harmon said.

The House and Senate will continue remote committee work for the remainder of the week.

*** UPDATE 5 *** I’m told that House Republican Leader Jim Durkin plans to stay in town for the governor’s live address. Should be fun.


  1. - Ok - Monday, Jan 31, 22 @ 6:31 pm:

    When the snow hits the fan, do you run and hide, or do you grab a shovel?

  2. - Kyle Hillman - Monday, Jan 31, 22 @ 6:43 pm:

    Thank you for sharing this!

  3. - Big Tom - Monday, Jan 31, 22 @ 6:58 pm:

    I would usually say get your ass to work, but as citizens we are never safer than when the legislature is not in session.

  4. - Just Me 2 - Monday, Jan 31, 22 @ 7:58 pm:

    Normally I would say legislators should buck up and get to session, but presumably IDOT is about to beg people to stay off the roads and legislators should abide by that request.

  5. - JoanP - Monday, Jan 31, 22 @ 8:33 pm:

    As I read that law, it says the Governor has to submit a budget by a date certain. It doesn’t say he has to do it to via a speech to the General Assembly. Why can’t he just do it in writing?

  6. - NonAFSCMEStateEmployeeFromChatham - Monday, Jan 31, 22 @ 8:53 pm:

    I’m sure things are being discussed and there will be decisions made tomorrow, but any chance State Employees are asked to stay home for at least Thursday (if not both Wednesday and Thursday)?

  7. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Jan 31, 22 @ 9:24 pm:

    Governor’s Crew,

    Make sure “mute” is off when the Governor is delivering the address. We’ve all been there during these times.

    You have one job. :)

    Safe travels to those heading north (south, west, and east too) out of Springfield, let’s hope for a smaller weather happening.

  8. - Leigh John-Ella - Monday, Jan 31, 22 @ 9:39 pm:

    Jim Durkin’s got nowhere else to go.

  9. - Frank talks - Monday, Jan 31, 22 @ 10:11 pm:

    Chambers haven’t been in session for over a month and they aren’t moving deadlines? That should go over well.

  10. - Todd - Tuesday, Feb 1, 22 @ 7:20 am:

    No man’s life, liberty, or property are safe while the legislature is in session

  11. - Rocky2 - Tuesday, Feb 1, 22 @ 7:38 am:

    How frustrating for the legislature. Between coronavirus and snow, they can’t get much going.

  12. - Ebur-floozy - Tuesday, Feb 1, 22 @ 7:50 am:

    That’s a feature not a big this year, @FrankTalks.

  13. - froganon - Tuesday, Feb 1, 22 @ 8:32 am:

    @ok-When the snow hits the fan, do you run and hide, or do you grab a shovel?

    Or do you ignore the warnings to stay put and “brave” the storm and then need first responders to rescue you?

  14. - Anyone Remember - Tuesday, Feb 1, 22 @ 8:42 am:

    ===Jim Durkin’s got nowhere else to go.===

    His predecessor would have spent Monday getting in 9 holes … .

  15. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Feb 1, 22 @ 9:11 am:

    Well froggy, we know you are the obedient type,

  16. - Huh? - Tuesday, Feb 1, 22 @ 9:27 am:

    “No man’s life, liberty, or property are safe while the legislature is in session”

    Spoken like a true tin foil hatted wing nut with stripped threads.

    Nobody is coming for you.

  17. - Michelle Flaherty - Tuesday, Feb 1, 22 @ 10:06 am:

    Does anyone really believe that Mayor Jim Langfelder will have the streets of Springfield clear and safe for travel?

    IDOT might get you here, then what?

  18. - NonAFSCMEStateEmployeeFromChatham - Tuesday, Feb 1, 22 @ 10:11 am:

    ==His predecessor would have spent Monday getting in 9 holes … .==

    At a faraway golf course undisclosed to a world-famous Oswego resident named Willy.

  19. - NonAFSCMEStateEmployeeFromChatham - Tuesday, Feb 1, 22 @ 10:38 am:

    ==Does anyone really believe that Mayor Jim Langfelder will have the streets of Springfield clear and safe for travel?==

    If on any side streets (including even around the Complex), forget about it until maybe this weekend. Main thoroughfares will most likely be barely passable. Still snow removal in Springfield is a joke compared to IDOT, and even in Chatham where I live, despite more miles of streets obviously. Has been problematic even before Langfelder was mayor.

  20. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Feb 1, 22 @ 10:44 am:


    Infamous or Notorious, maybe…

    I’d like think Cross, after inviting me, we’d sojourn to a bar and grill type establishment, with a golf simulator… and in between zoom calls that would be very disruptive, we’d play a few holes, have a few pints, wings, tavern pizza… bourbon or scotch… but have a decent background for zoom… you know, full zoom participation.

    It’d be a session day… golf session interrupted by actual session, but… a session all the same.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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