This Week in Springfield – 100-01

This Week in Springfield a bipartisan framework for a budget compromise was proposed by the Senate leaders prior to the adjournment of the 99th General Assembly and reintroduced immediately after the 100th General Assembly officially began as starting point for discussions.  The convening of the 100th Assembly also witnessed new members taking their seats and the election of Senate and House leaders.

EASY ON CRIME TOUGH ON ILLINOIS BUSINESSES

This week, the Illinois State Commission on Criminal Justice and Sentencing Reform (“Commission”) released a report recommending a series of proposals allegedly designed to decrease the population of state prisons by 25%. One of the Commission’s recommendations is raising the retail theft felony threshold from $300 to $2000—which would give Illinois the second highest felony threshold in the nation. Additionally, the recommendation provides that a retail thief could only be charged with a felony if they had a prior felony theft conviction. This means that an individual can repeatedly steal $1,999 worth of goods and only be charged with a misdemeanor.

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121 Report – CRMA – December 2016

In This Issue:

City Hall Leadership Changes
Cook County Committee Changes
Upcoming Legislation Effective Dates
Legislative Initiatives

CHICAGO CHANGES LEADERSHIP ROLES

 

After winning her election for State Comptroller, former Chicago City Clerk, Susana Mendoza, was sworn in to office on December 5, 2016. A week later, Mayor Rahm Emanuel appointed then Director of the Office of Legislative Counsel and Government Affairs (LCGA), Anna Valencia, to the post. Clerk Valencia will serve out the rest of the term pending City Council approval. Her first order of business will be gather information about whether the office should be combined with the city Comptroller’s office. In addition, she will be working on a municipal ID program to aid residents who traditionally have difficulty getting state-issued identification in securing certain social services and other government resources. Clerk Valencia will serve until the next city election which will be held in 2019.

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121 Report – CRMA – November 2016

IN THIS ISSUE:

COOK COUNTY SWEETENED BEVERAGE TAX
BAG TAX
LEGISLATIVE UPDATE

 

COOK COUNTY WRAPS UP 2017 BUDGET SEASON WITH 

A TAX AND A PROMISE

This week, the Cook County Board passed its 2017 budget by accounting for $100 million of its deficit with a combination of cuts to county employees, holding the line on COLA increases for non-union employees, reductions in non-essential spending and increased revenue projections. With $74 million remaining in the deficit, President Preckwinkle turned to a proposal to implement a tax on beverages sweetened with sugar or artificial sweeteners. The controversial proposal was met with fierce opposition from IRMA and all of our partners along the chain in the beverage industry. After meetings with the Commissioners, phone calls, letters, emails, a TV, radio and social media campaign and in-store efforts to alert customers to the impending tax, the measure passed by one vote.

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Let’s Say Thank You

November 14, 2016          

***ACTION ALERT***

THEY VOTED “NO”, NOW LET’S SHOW THEM SOME GRATITUDE

These days, it has been a challenge to convince many elected officials to stand with employers and protect jobs in a meaningful way.  The sweetened beverage tax debate was a perfect opportunity for Cook County Board Members to vote against a tax that will make our border retailers vulnerable, will be very difficult and expensive to administer and ultimately cost jobs at both the retail and distribution levels.

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This Week in Springfield – 99-41

ILLINOIS ELECTION RECAP

 

Conventional wisdom holds that presidential election years are generally very good for Democratic candidates as voter turnout is higher than in non-presidential election years. Illinois has witnessed elections where Republicans did well around the nation but not here. This year, voter turnout was indeed high but the conventional wisdom only held for statewide offices and one congressional district.

Illinois Republicans scored impressive wins last night in the various Illinois General Assembly races netting a four-seat pick-up in the House and a two-seat pick-up in the Senate. However, this changes very little. When the 100th Illinois General Assembly convenes on January 11th, the Democrats will continue to hold a sizeable 67-51 majority in the Illinois House and a veto-proof 37-22 majority in the Senate. Nevertheless, Governor Bruce Rauner’s veto pen is now strengthened.

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