103RD GENERAL ASSEMBLY:
The Illinois General Assembly was in session Tuesday through Thursday of the week of February 20, primarily considering legislation at the committee level. The Illinois House reconvenes on Tuesday, February 28 for three days of session. The Senate is off next week and will reconvene on Tuesday, March 7.
Bill Introduction deadlines have passed in both chambers. In total, 2,442 Senate Bills and 3,974 House Bills were filed prior to the deadline. Of those, 1,901 Senate Bills remain in the Senate Assignments Committee while 2,150 House Bills remain in the House Rules Committee.
Friday, March 10 is the deadline to pass substantive Senate Bills and House Bills out of Committee in the chamber of origin. The Senate has one session week left prior to the committee deadline; the House has two session weeks prior to the committee deadline.
Governor Pritzker appointed Representative Fran Hurley to the Labor Relations Board. Hurley is expected to resign her seat by the end of the month. Local Democrats will have one month from the creation of the vacancy to fill the appointment.
2023 Key Dates:
February 28: Consolidated Primary Election
March 10: Deadline – Substantive Bills Out of Committee in both chambers
March 24: Deadline – Third Reading Deadline – Substantive House Bills in the House
March 31: Deadline – Third Reading Deadline – Substantive Senate Bills in the Senate
April 4: Consolidated Election
April 28: Deadline – Substantive Bills out of Committee in both chambers
May 11: Deadline – Third Reading Substantive House Bills in Senate
May 12: Deadline – Third Reading Substantive Senate Bills in House
May 19: Adjournment
Executive Order: In order to allow the state to better mobilize and coordinate response efforts during any future disasters and emergencies, the Governor is changing the name (and scope) of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency to the Illinois Emergency Management Agency and Office of Homeland Security (IEMA-OHS).
Executive Order 2023-03 will include review and discussion by both the Illinois House and Senate and will go into law 60 days after submission unless affirmatively disapproved by one of those chambers. The transition will be phased over the next one to two years, and when complete, will provide IEMA-OHS with administrative capabilities to help respond to disasters, threats, or emergencies more effectively.
New Laws: Governor Pritzker signed SB 1001 which reduces the fees for First Class Wine Makers.
Bond Rating Upgraded: S&P Global Ratings upgraded Illinois bonds, for the third time since July of 2021. S&P Global upgraded Illinois’ rating on its General Obligation bonds to A- (stable outlook) from BBB+ (stable outlook) and upgraded Build Illinois sales tax bonds to A (stable outlook) from A- (stable outlook).
Reproductive Freedom Alliance: Governor JB Pritzker will join the Reproductive Freedom Alliance (RFA), a non-partisan group of state Governors focused on working alongside one another to identify best practices for legislative and executive action to protect reproductive rights. The RFA will work in partnership with The Raben Group to facilitate conversations and share information on successes and risks in the fight for reproductive justice. Twenty states have signed on to the Alliance: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Washington, and Wisconsin.
Unsewered Communities Construction Grants: The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency awarded $21,046,025 in grants to six communities across the State through EPA’s Unsewered Communities Construction Grant Program (UCCGP). This is the second of five planned funding rounds for this program, which provides funding to areas currently without wastewater collection and/or treatment facilities.
Gubernatorial Appointments: Governor Pritzker appointed the following:
- Arnie Rivera will serve as the new chair of the Illinois Tollway Board
- James Rivera has been appointed to serve as Illinois State Fire Marshal
- Alyssa Murphy will serve as a Member of the Illinois Racing Board
- Angela Oberreiter will continue to serve as a member of the State Board of Health
- Fran Hurley will serve as a Member of the Illinois Labor Relations Board
- Michelle Hoy-Watkins will serve as a Member of the Illinois State Police Merit Board
- Mona Noriega will continue to serve Chair of the Human Rights Commission
Gun Violence Grants: In response to high levels of gun violence experienced since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Illinois Department of Human Services Office of Firearm Violence Prevention (OFVP), together with Cook County’s Justice Advisory Council (JAC), announced $25 million in grants to fund 74 service providers focused on supporting residents at risk of experiencing gun violence in Chicago and Suburban Cook County.
BIPA Court Ruling: In a divided ruling, the Illinois Supreme Court ruled that claims under Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) accrue every time the law is violated – or each time a person’s biometric data is scanned and transmitted without prior consent.
SAFE-T Act: The Illinois Supreme Court is scheduled to hear oral arguments regarding the elimination of cash bail under the SAFE-T Act on March 14.
Legislative Priorities: HB3875 (Stava-Murray) - Amends the Grant Accountability and Transparency Act. Provides that the Act does not apply to awards made by the Department of Public Health to certified local health departments for the purposes of public health, public safety, and healthcare-related projects utilizing State and federal funds. Provides that federal and federal pass-through awards from the Department of Public Health to certified local health departments are governed by and must comply with specified federal guidelines notwithstanding the requirements of the Act. Effective immediately. GOMB has asked to meet with the Department and IPHA to discuss this bill.
House Democrats Establish Cannabis Working Group: Illinois House Democrats Thursday announced the formation of a legislative working group that will be reviewing all cannabis-related legislation in the 103rd General Assembly. In a press release, group lead Rep. La Shawn Ford (D-Chicago) said the group’s goal would be to continue facilitate Illinois' equity-based cannabis regulation system. According to the Democrats, more than 30 cannabis-related bills have already been filed.