As 2019 comes to a close and we prepare for a new year, several notable laws take effect January 1 that Illinois residents may want to know about.
The new laws kicking off 2020 cover everything from transportation safety and increased traffic penalties, to supporting our military personnel.
The Belvidere Park District runs a special summer recreation camping program for special needs teens, giving them the opportunity to experience the outdoors while learning and enjoying the basics of camping, fishing and boating.
A recent report ranks Illinois low in fiscal transparency, and as a new decade looms, lawmakers must commit to improving the state’s system of drawing legislative boundaries to limit undue influence from politicians and special interests.
Illinois continues to move toward a brand-new industry launching statewide, as state government continues to prepare for the sale of recreational cannabis beginning January 1.
The fall Veto Session came to a close during the week with the final days’ main focus firmly on combatting the ethics problems currently plaguing the state.
A full agenda awaits legislators when they return to the Capitol Nov. 12 for the final week of the fall Veto Session, and time is running out to take advantage of Illinois’ one-time-only Tax Amnesty Program.
In other news, the Illinois Emergency Management Agency and the state Department of Public Health have teamed up on a winter weather preparedness guide.
The Senate Republican Caucus took action this week to restore public trust in an honest and ethical state government by introducing a legislative proposal to ensure independent investigations of members of the General Assembly.
An ambitious multi-year, multi-billion-dollar plan for road and bridge construction was launched during the week, while the battle against opioid deaths continues, and the state improves educational opportunities for both students and teachers.
During the upcoming fall veto session, during which they generally take actions on bills vetoed by the Governor, Illinois lawmakers could also be asked to consider a proposal to consolidate suburban and downstate pension plans, and new bills being filed by lawmakers.
This week is Fire Prevention Week, and the Illinois State Fire Marshal is offering safety tips to keep your family safe this fall.
In other news, the Illinois State Police is warning residents about a phone scam, and proceeds from a new lottery game will go to help the homeless.
Illinois has been ranked the least tax-friendly state in a new study. Meanwhile, state officials will be using the month of October to educate people about cybersecurity, and residents can now apply for help with heating bills.
In other news, IDOT is looking for snowplow drivers, and harvest could be rough for farmers, whether they are growing corn or hemp.
After a rough and delayed planting season, Illinois’ agriculture industry received good news this week with a Taiwanese delegation committing to purchasing over $2 billion in Illinois soy and corn over the next two years. Meanwhile, Illinois motorists are encouraged to do their part to keep farmers safe as they head back into the fields and hit the roadways for the 2019 harvest season.
A one-time tax amnesty program is being offered to delinquent taxpayers beginning October 1. Also during the week, members of the Property Tax Relief Task Force continued to meet in hopes of addressing Illinois’ onerous property tax burden.
In other news, promoting farm safety and preventing accidents is the focus of National Farm Safety and Health Week. Parents and caregivers are encouraged to bring their car seats in for inspection as part of Seat Check Saturday.
Beginning Jan. 1, 2020, recreational cannabis sales will be legal in Illinois. With less than four months to go before the new law takes effect, dispensaries have several regulations to abide by, such as taking part in health and safety training, before opening their doors.
A new law allowing allow craft distilleries to deliver and sell their products directly to merchants has recently become law.
In other news, an estimated $69 million in federal aid is being sought for flood damages across the state, and new reports give mixed reviews on Illinois’ economic outlook.
A number of bills sponsored by Senate Republican lawmakers have been signed into law during the week, including measures expanding youth hunting, shining light on ADA violations, seeking to repurpose a state facility, and increasing safety.
Several bills sponsored by Senate Republican lawmakers have been recently signed into law, including measures to provide sexual assault victims with more transparency on the status of rape kit processing, and to authorize special license plate decals to raise awareness and funds for pediatric cancer treatment and research.
Landmark anti-sexual harassment and discrimination reforms, and a measure aimed at reducing property taxes by allowing for some government consolidation have recently been signed into law.
In the wake of a recent federal Supreme Court ruling, Senate Republicans are renewing their call to pass a state Constitutional Amendment to allow voters to decide who gets to draw legislative maps.
Recent earthquakes in California are prompting calls for earthquake awareness in Illinois from the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA). The request also coincides with IEMA’s Youth Preparedness Month for July.
The Rockford area will soon see the benefits of a historic gaming expansion package due to legislation sponsored by State Senator Dave Syverson (R-Rockford) and signed into law by Governor Pritzker.
As the summer begins, legislation from the spring legislative session is now being signed into law – beginning with a controversial measure to expand abortion in Illinois and a reinstatement of the five-hour school day minimum.
The Illinois General Assembly adjourned for the summer on June 2, two days after the regularly scheduled adjournment, after addressing a number of high-profile issues.
Legislation that expands gaming in Illinois and directs funds toward constructing a highly-anticipated casino in Rockford will soon be on its way to the Governor for final signature, according to State Sen. Dave Syverson (R-Rockford).
Despite the looming end of the regularly scheduled spring legislative session with its scheduled May 31 adjournment rapidly approaching, it appears a great deal of work remains on several controversial issues.
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