This week, Senate Republicans continued their call to advance legislation that would reduce property taxes in Illinois, while also encouraging residents to honor those veterans who have served our country.
Sen. Barickman received top honors from the Associated Builders and Contractors this week. His perfect score of 100 percent was awarded for the 100th General Assembly of the State of Illinois. The award is in response to his support on legislation such as workers’ compensation, healthcare insurance mandates, and prevailing wage regulation.
The Illinois State Board of Education is seeking input on public education funding for the fiscal year 2020 budget. Three open budget hearings have been scheduled, giving individuals the opportunity to share their funding requests prior to ISBE sending its final recommendations to the General Assembly and the Governor.
In other action, legislation was filed to keep people who have committed tax fraud from running for public office.
Also during the week, a new report was released showing the number of school districts in Illinois able to access high-speed internet has increased, the Governor proclaimed October as Manufacturing Month in Illinois, and the Illinois Department of Revenue launches a new, mobile-friendly website.
Recent changes to Illinois law will require children traveling in Illinois to remain rear-facing until age 2. Gov. Bruce Rauner recently signed legislation supporting recommendations of experts and advocates to keep children in rear-facing car seats as long as possible. This law will take effect Jan. 1, 2019.
A Kankakee resident recently tested positive for Heartland Virus, the first reported case in Illinois. Reported cases of Heartland virus disease are relatively rare. Likely spread by the Lone Star tick, more than 30 cases of Heartland virus disease have been reported in the Midwest and southern United States.
A recent list from WalletHub ranks the best cities in Illinois for their labor-market health. More than 120 cities were ranked based on job opportunities, starting salary, employment growth, among other factors.
Also during the week, Illinois is set to receive nearly $44 million from the federal government to help fund treatment centers and increase the availability of addiction treatment in the fight against opioid abuse.
In other action, those seeking financial assistance for winter heating should start gathering the proper documentation now so they are ready to apply for the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program Oct. 1
Senator Jason Barickman will be available for media interviews in the Watseka area this afternoon and evening, Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018. It's an opportunity for area media to learn about what's happening in state and local governments, ask questions, and share their thoughts on legislative and community matters.
To ease the permit process and assist the agriculture community in Illinois, Gov. Bruce Rauner recently declared a harvest emergency. In other news, the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) has made public the results of Teach Illinois, a yearlong effort to better understand and address the state’s teacher shortage.
Millions of dollars in capital funding have been released to community colleges statewide as part of the Fiscal Year 2019 capital budget. Of those funds, Heartland Community College (HCC) in Normal will see $275,000 in state and local funding to help with campus repairs.
Here's a look at what's making headlines in district and around the state this week.
Illinois State University will see more than $3 million for improvements and repairs as part of the Fiscal Year 2019 capital budget approved by lawmakers in late May. The funding will go to Illinois State University College of Fine Arts (CFA) to cover essential repairs after the college experienced three significant infrastructure system failures in the last three years, causing severe disruption to operations.
Senator Jason Barickman has received the “Champion of Free Enterprise” award from the Illinois Chamber of Commerce. In order to receive the award, a senator or representative must have received an average of 85 percent or better voting record over the previous two Illinois General Assemblies.
A five mile stretch of I-74 from post 155 to post 160 near Farmer City will be known as the Trooper Ryan Albin Memorial Highway in honor of Albin. Trooper Albin was killed in a car crash in the line of duty.
Senate Bill 585 signed into law - county collectors will now be able to eject tax bidders who intentionally disrupt a tax sale to change the outcome of an auction, or who use illegal bid practices in order to monopolize the bidding process.
High school students will soon have another option to help prepare them for their future careers. Seeking to connect talented young people with good-paying jobs that don’t necessarily require a college degree, House Bill 5247 requires the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) to adopt rules that would allow students 16 years and older to participate in industry-based occupational apprenticeship programs.
Certain local and state government officials will now have greater ability to modernize candidates' filings, reducing clutter and improving efficiency, with state Sen. Jason Barickman's (R-Bloomington) House Bill 4395 having been signed into law August 23.
Pollinator-friendly solar sites are able to grow habitats to support dwindling monarch butterfly and honey bee populations in the state. The new law creates standards that will allow the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) to score how friendly a solar site is to such pollinators. The scoring will allow sites that meet the requirements to become certified by IDNR as “pollinator friendly.”
The law is aimed at protecting the integrity of the non-profit grant process, and makes a multitude of changes to the current grant process—including a requirement that grant dollars are to be spent or distributed during the fiscal year for which they were appropriated.
More than 100 new laws were signed this week, advancing changes targeting the state’s teacher shortage, streamlining services for veterans, and giving a leg-up to Illinois’ entrepreneurs. Other measures became law that aim to increase senior citizens’ access to high-speed Internet services, guarantee the safety of Illinois residents’ drinking water, and encourage Illinois students to pursue their higher education in-state. Finally, additional legislation was signed into law to support Illinois’ number one industry: agriculture.
Governor Bruce Rauner plans to sign HB 4897 into law on Saturday, Aug. 11, at Destihl Brewery in Normal. Sen. Jason Barickman cosponsored the bill, saying it provides a step toward a stronger free market economy.
Illinois has several new laws on the books including a good-government reform measure that allows affected counties to consolidate their election commissions with their county clerk’s offices, a bill creating the Historic Tax Credit Act and legislation recognizing the Illinois Department of Innovation and Technology (DoIT) as a state agency.
Also during the week, the Illinois State Fairgrounds is prepping for the 2018 Illinois State Fair, which is just around the corner. This yearly tradition kicks off August 9.
New laws have been signed seeking to address the state’s growing teacher shortage, and better prepare Illinois students for the demands of college and the workforce.
The “opt-in” phase of the state’s Automatic Voter Registration law also began this week, allowing residents to update their voter status at the DMV, which will be sent immediately to election officials.
The Illinois Legislative Inspector General (LIG) is gaining significant autonomy and powers to investigate claims of sexual harassment, thanks to a new law co-sponsored by State Sen. Jason Barickman (R-Bloomington).
“This is a major step toward finally changing a toxic climate that has existed for far too long in Springfield...
Both chambers of the Illinois General Assembly have now passed State Sen. Jason Barickman’s (R-Bloomington) legislation to restore the safety and accountability of the state’s grant process.
“I’m proud that we were able to work through both chambers and pass this common-sense bipartisan legislation,” said Sen. Barickman. “The people of Illinois should be able to have faith that the state is spending taxpayer funds ethically and efficiently, which is the goal of this legislation...
On May 30, the Senate voted 56-2 to pass a $38 billion spending plan for Fiscal Year 2019.
“We have a divided government. This is how divided government is supposed to work. I’m pleased that we’ve put together a full-year, balanced budget which is the product of hard work, tough choices and bipartisan cooperation...
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