With the Illinois High School Association Debate State Championship taking place over the weekend, Sen. Tom Rooney had the chance to welcome two debate teams from the 27th District to the Capitol on March 15. The John Hersey High School Debate Team from Arlington Heights and the William Fremd High School Debate Team from Palatine both travelled down to Springfield to represent their schools in competition.
Senate Republicans will serve on the Legislative Public Safety Group, after being appointed by Senate Republican Leader Bill Brady March 20.
In response to the trending videos online of individuals abusing explosive compounds such as Tannerite used for shooting targets, the Senate approved a safety measure sponsored by State Sen. John Curran (R-Downers Grove) that requires a FOID Card for the purchase or possession of explosive compounds.
The Illinois Senate approved a series of gun measures this week.
Senator Dale Righter talks about the need for bipartisanship when negotiating gun legislation.
State Sen. Chapin Rose (R-Mahomet) and State Rep. Brad Halbrook (R-Shelbyville) announced March 14 that the site of the state-owned Eagle Creek Resort in Shelby County is now officially open for vendors to submit a development proposal to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.
Spurred by increased attention on gun safety, State Senator Chris Nybo (R-Elmhurst) participated as a guest panelist at the School Safety Forum on March 12 at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park.
Law abiding citizens who hold a Firearm Owners Identification (FOID) card would be able to display an electronic version of his or her FOID card on their phone or other electronic device under legislation (Senate Bill 2871) sponsored by State Sen. Neil Anderson.
Sen. Dave Syverson (Rockford) attended the March 12 bill signing of bipartisan legislation that protects safety net and rural hospitals while ensuring continued federal support for quality healthcare to more than three million Illinoisans.
The opioid epidemic experienced another alarming upsurge, as the federal Centers for Disease Control recently released a report that shows an 66 percent spike in opioid overdose cases at Illinois emergency rooms, and an upward trend across the country.
The Senate and House Veterans Affairs Committees met for the fourth time to resume their conversations with new data about the outbreaks and sequence of events at the Illinois Veterans’ Home in Quincy. The meeting took place at the Bilandic Building in Chicago on March 5.
Lastly, the Senate Task Force on Sexual Harassment and Discrimination Awareness and Prevention met to hear testimony on sexual harassment in the private sector.
The Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Firearms held their first hearing on March 8 to focus on legislative initiatives involving gun sales and possession.
The Senate passed several different gun safety bills during the week. Support for the different legislative proposals varies, with some members opposing every bill, and others who support one or more of the proposals. Discussions on gun control will likely continue to dominate public and legislative discourse up to and beyond the General Assembly’s scheduled adjournment May 31.
The Senate also passed legislation (Senate Bill 1773 and Senate Bill 1573) to update a Medicaid assessment system that ensures that hospitals across the state will continue to receive federal funding. The program is fully financed by hospitals and the federal government—there is no cost to the state.
More than four dozen students from the 59th Senate District travelled to Springfield this week to participate in the second meeting of State Sen. Dale Fowler’s (R-Harrisburg) Youth Advisory Council (YAC).
A bipartisan group of Illinois legislators from the House and Senate today announced the creation of a Children’s Health Caucus. The caucus will examine data on the current health and well-being of Illinois children and adolescents.
State Sen. Jim Oberweis (R-Sugar Grove) is questioning “special-interest” legislation that would protect suppliers of durable medical equipment from price competition, and require the state to pay higher prices than a competitor might offer.
The Annie LeGere Law is another step closer to implementation as an amendment sponsored by State Senator Chris Nybo (R-Elmhurst) seeks to increase participation of medical professionals in the program that would place epinephrine auto-injectors (EpiPens) in the hands of law enforcement across the state. The amendment was approved unanimously by the State Senate on February 21.
Working to pave the way for economic growth in the City of Marion, State Sen. Dale Fowler is sponsoring legislation that would implement an extension to an existing Tax Increment Financial (TIF) District for the area.
State Sen. Sue Rezin and Mike Sutfin, Ottawa’s Building and Zoning Official, led a conference call this morning with members of the Illinois Valley Flood Resiliency Alliance (IVFRA) in response the flood event occurring now along the Illinois and Fox Rivers.
State Sen. Sue Rezin will be joined by State Rep. David Welter (R-Morris), State Rep. Lindsay Parkhurst (R-Kankakee), and several local officials for “Coffee & Conversation,” a free event open to the public March 1.
The Illinois Department of Human Rights (IDHR) announced the creation of a toll-free sexual harassment hotline to provide resources to the public, including referrals to counseling and legal services. The hotline, and accompanying website, will also allow for the reporting of sexual harassment allegations in both private and public places of employment.
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