Illinois

Education - July 18 2016 | 07-15-2016

Education In IL The ILLINOIS State Board of Education announces the Prairie State will stop using the controversial Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers in reading and math, exams based on the Common Core curriculum designed...

IL Gov. Rauner Launches School Funding Task Force | 07-15-2016

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) announced he is creating a bipartisan, 25-person commission to create a new formula for distributing state money to local school districts. The current system, in place for the last two decades, has been widely criticized...

Gun Rights Movement Suffers Setbacks in Courts | 07-08-2016

Last month a full panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled 7-4 in Peruta v. San Diego that “the right to keep and bear arms” granted by the Second Amendment doesn’t extend to concealed weapons. The case originated...

IL Passes Stopgap Budget | 07-08-2016

In 1991 Illinois went 18 days without a state budget. Then-Gov. Jim Edgar (R) said at the time that the state had never experienced a budget delay like it. That delay doesn’t seem quite so shocking now that the state has just become the first...

Little Correlation Between Gun Laws and Worst Mass Shootings | 07-08-2016

Three of the eight states where the deadliest mass shootings since 1984 have occurred - California, Connecticut and New York - are among those with the strictest gun laws, according to the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. None of those shootings took...

IL Bond Sale Produces Mixed Results | 07-01-2016

Illinois completed a $550 million bond sale last month but had to settle for a 3.75 percent interest rate on bonds with maturities ranging from one to 25 years, well below the 2 percent rate states in better financial shape can get in the current market...

Dire Budget Situation in IL Prompts Unusual Bond Sale Warning | 06-17-2016

In the prospectus for its $550 million bond sale scheduled for June 16, Illinois warned potential buyers for the first time that if it missed a payment - something else it has never done - they might not be able to immediately collect on their investment...

Budgets In Brief - June 20 2016 | 06-17-2016

Constitutional Income Tax Cap Advances in NC NORTH CAROLINA’s Senate Finance Committee advanced a proposed constitutional amendment ( SB 817 ) last week that would cap state income taxes at 5.5 percent. If approved by the General Assembly the...

Potpourri - June 13 2016 | 06-10-2016

Concealed In CA The U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals rules that CALIFORNIA counties may restrict permits for carrying concealed firearms in public. The ruling overturns a 2014 decision that tossed out a Golden State requiring people to show cause...

Governors In Brief - June 6 2016 | 06-03-2016

IL Gov. Rauner, Lawmakers Expand Medical Pot ILLINOIS Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) and legislative leaders agreed to a compromise to extend and expand the Prairie State’s pilot medical marijuana program. Under the agreement, the program will continue...

Majority of States Have Minimum Wage Higher Than Federal Standard | 05-20-2016

As of last month, 29 states had a minimum wage that was higher than the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Two of those states, California and New York, have also passed laws that will gradually...

Crime & Punishment - May 23 2016 | 05-20-2016

AZ, OH, OK Delay Executions Pharmaceutical manufacturer Pfizer announces it will enact protocols to ensure states are no longer able to use drugs it provides as part of carrying out a lethal injection execution. At least 20 other U.S. and European...

Majority of States Looking at Daily Fantasy Sports | 05-13-2016

Thirty-three states have considered legislation related to daily fantasy sports this year, according to LegalSportsReport.com and LexisNexis State Net legislative data. DFS bills have been passed in four states, including Virginia, which enacted two....

IL Budget Writers Lapped by Counterparts in 15 Other States | 05-13-2016

Of the 31 states that approve budgets on an annual basis (the rest do so biannually), 15 have already enacted a budget for the 2017 fiscal year, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Illinois is not one of those states. In...

Drone Laws Passed In Over Half of States In Last Few Years | 05-05-2016

Since 2013, 27 states have enacted laws addressing unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), or drones, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. The laws generally define what UAS or drones are and specify how they can be used by law enforcement...

States Consider Raising Legal Age For Tobacco | 04-29-2016

At least 11 states have considered measures this session mimicking Hawaii’s newly implemented law that raises the minimum age for purchasing tobacco products to 21, according to LexisNexis State Net ’s legislative database. California’s...

Flurry of Remote Sales Tax Bills in States This Year | 04-08-2016

At least a dozen states have introduced legislation in 2016 related to out-of-state, or remote, sales taxes, according to LexisNexis State Net’s legislative tracking database. Most of the bills have been aimed at expanding the definition of a state...

More States Oppose Obama Immigration Policy Than Support | 03-18-2016

Texas and twenty-five other states have filed suit to block President Obama’s executive actions in November shielding undocumented immigrants from deportation for three years, according to the Pew Research Center. Twelve states have filed an amicus...

Few States Focusing On Self-Driving Vehicles | 03-11-2016

Since 2011, when Nevada became the first state to authorize the operation of self-driving cars, five other states -- California, Florida, Michigan, North Dakota and Tennessee -- have enacted legislation, and Arizona’s governor has issued an executive...

Majority of States Have Good Samaritan Laws | 03-04-2016

States have enacted numerous laws to combat the epidemic of opioid-related deaths plaguing much of the United States. Most common are so-called “Good Samaritan” laws that generally give a person civil or criminal immunity for seeking help...

New Meaning for 'Can't Afford College' in IL | 03-04-2016

Public universities in Illinois are facing financial crisis with the state in the ninth month of disagreement between Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner and the Democrat-controlled legislature over the state’s budget. None of the 57 public universities...

Rauner Issues IL Budget Ultimatum | 02-19-2016

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) proffered two options for the coming budget year - which is still in a stalemate over the current year budget: If lawmakers will go along with a slate of reforms he campaigned on but has so far been unable to pass, he will...

Politics In Brief - February 22 2016 | 02-19-2016

Happy Obama Day? A bill filed by a Chicago representative would make President Barack Obama’s birthday Illinois’s 13th paid state holiday. Rep. Andre Thapedi (D) filed the measure Feb. 2, and is awaiting approval from the Illinois House...

States Still Divesting from Iran | 02-12-2016

Twenty-two states and the District of Columbia have laws on the books prohibiting at least some state pension or retirement funds from investing in companies that do a certain amount of business in Iran. Ten of those states also have laws on the books...

States take action on Mental Health First Aid | 02-04-2016

During the 2013-14 legislative year, 14 states enacted bills related to Mental Health First Aid - CPR-like training to help emergency personnel, teachers and others recognize and respond to mental health disorders - according to the National Council for...

Health & Science - February 8 2016 | 02-04-2016

The ILLINOIS Department of Health rejects a recommendation from the state Medical Cannabis Advisory Board to add eight conditions — including autism, irritable bowel syndrome, post-traumatic stress disorder, osteoarthritis and several pain-related...

Budgets in Brief - January 18 2016 | 01-15-2016

Chicago to Consider Airbnb fee Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has proposed an ordinance that would impose a 2-percent surcharge on home-sharing and vacation rentals like those offered through services like Airbnb and VRBO. The proposal also seeks to require...

Lottery-Fixing Investigation Spreads Nationwide | 01-08-2016

Last summer, Eddie Tipton, a former security officer for the Multi-State Lottery Association (MUSL), which administers several multi-state games including Powerball and Mega Millions, was convicted of rigging a jackpot in Iowa in 2010. Now Tipton is facing...

Only A Handful of States Considering "Assault Weapon" Bills | 12-11-2015

Eight states introduced legislation this year aimed at imposing or tightening restrictions on “assault weapons” specifically, according to LexisNexis State Net’s legislative database. Four of those states also introduced legislation...

Early Holiday Budget Gift in IL | 12-11-2015

As Illinois entered its sixth month without a state budget last week, Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) and Democrats who control the state’s General Assembly reached a rare agreement to free up $3.1 billion in state funds. The money will go to a host of needy...

Environment - December 14 2015 | 12-11-2015

The U.S. House of Representatives approves HR 1321, a bill that would ban the use of microbeads, small bits of plastic found in a variety of personal products like soap and toothpaste. At least eight states, including ILLINOIS, COLORADO, CONNECTICUT,...

Potpourri - December 14 2015 | 12-11-2015

The U.S. Supreme Court declines to hear a challenge to an ILLINOIS city’s ban on semiautomatic, high-capacity assault weapons. The city, Highland Park, is a suburb of Chicago. Seven states — MARYLAND, CALIFORNIA, CONNECTICUT, HAWAII, MASSACHUSETTS...

Flurry of Statehouse Action On Daily Fantasy Sports | 11-13-2015

Legislation related to daily fantasy sports (DFS) has been drafted or introduced this year in 16 states, according to LegalSportsReport.com, which covers the legal online sports wagering industry. The bills generally seek to legalize DFS in states that...

Airbnb Pays Hotel Taxes in Several U.S. Cities and Three States | 11-06-2015

Airbnb collects and remits transient occupancy taxes, also known as hotel taxes, on behalf of its hosts in a dozen U.S. cities and the District of Columbia, according to the company’s website. Occupancy and sales taxes are also collected and remitted...

Chicago Mayor to Propose Major Property Tax Hike | 09-10-2015

To help cover the cost of a big pension payment for police and firefighters next year and help shrink his city’s annual budget hole, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel will reportedly call for the city’s largest property tax increase in at least decades...

Crime & Law Enforcement - September 7 2015 | 09-04-2015

IL Signs SB 627 ILLINOIS Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) signs SB 627, legislation that bars drivers with two or more drunk driving convictions from operating a vehicle unless it has an ignition interlock device installed (DECATUR HERALD & REVIEW).

Rauner Wins Battle with Dems Over Unions | 09-04-2015

Illinois Gov. Brue Rauner (R) scored the biggest victory of his administration last week as Democrats came up three votes short of overriding his veto of a union-backed bill (SB 1229) that would have ensured labor disputes are determined through binding...

Education - September 7 2015 | 09-04-2015

CA Signs SB 725 & Approves AB 721 CALIFORNIA Gov. Jerry Brown signs SB 725, which suspends for the class of 2015 a state requirement that all graduating students take the high school exit exam. State education officials cancelled the test earlier...

Business - August 24 2015 | 08-21-2015

NY Signs SB 1757 NEW YORK Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) signs SB 1757, legislation that bans the sale of powdered or crystalline alcohol in the Empire State. New York becomes the 25 th state to ban the product, which has yet to actually reach consumers in...

States Bringing Public-Style Pension Plans to Private Sector | 08-21-2015

At least 25 states have either passed or considered legislation aimed at bringing the efficiencies of public retirement systems to new pension plans for workers in the private sector, according to the Pension Rights Center. Illinois, Oregon and Washington...

Feds Ease State Efforts to Create New Private Sector Pensions | 08-21-2015

As a young man, California resident Scott Kirchner was admittedly not concerned with saving money for retirement. “Until I was probably 31, the idea of saving any money for anything was foreign to me,” he says. Now, at age 56 and...

Municipal Bankruptcy Part of IL Gov's 'Turnaround Agenda' | 08-21-2015

As part of his plan for fixing what he believes is ailing his state,” Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) wants to allow municipalities to file for bankruptcy. And a state lawmaker has introduced legislation to do just that. A dozen states already...

Potpourri - August 24 2015 | 08-21-2015

ILLINOIS Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) signs legislation that will create a task force to develop rules for the use and regulation of drone aircraft. The task force is required to submit recommendations to the governor by July 1, 2016 (ASSOCIATED PRESS). ...

Governors In Brief - August 24 2015 | 08-21-2015

Blagojevich's Rehearing Rejected The full 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has rejected former ILLINOIS Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s (D) request to rehear the appeal of his corruption convictions. A three-judge panel of the court had previously...

Education - August 17 2015 | 08-14-2015

NJ Signs SB 2484, SB 2377 Vetoes SB 1857 Amidst reports that student achievement is being harmed by a lack of sleep, NEW JERSEY Gov. Chris Christie (R) signs SB 2484, which directs education officials to review the impact of delaying school starting...

Health & Science - August 17 2015 | 08-14-2015

IL Signs HB 1335 ILLINOIS Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) signs HB 1335, so-called “right-to-try” legislation that allows terminally ill patients to try drugs that have not yet been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The Prairie State...

Education - August 10 2015 | 08-07-2015

ILLINOIS Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) signs SB 7, legislation that requires students who suffer a concussion to get permission from a doctor or athletic trainer before they fully return to class or sports (CHICAGO TRIBUNE).

Health & Science - August 10 2015 | 08-07-2015

ILLINOIS Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) signs SB 1298, which allows a Prairie State resident entering the hospital to designate a caregiver prior to discharge to the patient's home or transfer to another facility. The new law requires hospitals to notify the...

Social Policy - August 10 2015 | 08-07-2015

ILLINOIS Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) signs legislation that requires large airports to install lactation rooms for new moms. The new rooms must be in place by 2017, although smaller airports will have to make the upgrades only when building new terminals or...

IL Gov Pushes For Clampdown On Collective Bargaining | 08-07-2015

Illinois’ Democrat-controlled Senate passed legislation last month that would freeze property taxes statewide for two years and provide about $200 million in relief for Chicago’s troubled teacher pension system. But Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) said...