A number of new laws will take effect beginning with the new year. Some of the major pieces of legislation include:

Providing for taxpayer-funding of elective abortions for state employees and Medicaid recipients
Provides that taxpayer funds may be used to cover abortion costs through the state insurance program and through Medicaid for any reason, including elective abortions. Federal law prohibits the use of taxpayer funds for abortion procedures beyond issues involving rape, incest or health risks to the mother. Due to the federal Hyde amendment, Illinois will not be eligible for the 50 cents-on-the-dollar federal reimbursement for elective abortion procedures done through Medicaid.

Law Enforcement Sexual Assault Investigation Act
The Law Enforcement Sexual Assault Investigation Act requires each law enforcement agency to have a written policy regarding the investigation of an officer-involved sexual assault. Any investigations must be conducted by at least two investigators with specialized sexual assault investigation training from either the Law Enforcement Training Standards Board or the State Police. If a
complaint is made against a member of the Chicago Police Department, Chicago’s Independent Police Review Authority will conduct the investigation.

Research Dogs and Cats Adoption act
A research facility, after the completion of its research, must assess the health of the dog or cat, and determine whether or not the animal is suitable for adoption. For the animals determined to be fit, the research facility must make a reasonable effort to have them adopted. Facilities that provide the animals to adoption agencies are immune from liability except when willful or wanton misconduct takes place. Research facilities must also post their animal policies online.

Barack Obama Day
Designates August 4th each year as Barack Obama Day. This is not an official state holiday, state government does not shut down.

Police officers PTSD training
Amends the Illinois Police Training Act for probationary police officers to receive training on effective recognition of and responses to stress, trauma, and post-traumatic stress experienced by police officers. 

Outlaws hospital “no admit” lists
The law prohibits hospitals from maintaining a list of individuals that may not be admitted for treatment. It does not prohibit a hospital from recommending an alternate provider, coordinating an appropriate transfer, or arranging access to care services that best meet the needs of an individual patient. 

Free access to feminine hygiene products in Illinois schools
Feminine hygiene products will now be available, at no cost to students, in the bathrooms of school buildings under this new mandate to Illinois school districts. “Feminine hygiene products” means tampons and sanitary napkins for use in connection with the menstrual cycle.

Cybersecurity training for state employees
Requires state employees to annually undergo training by the Department of Innovation and Technology concerning cybersecurity. The Department will be able to make the training an online course, and it will include information on detecting phishing scams, preventing spyware infections and identity theft, and preventing and responding to data breaches. 

Illegal electronic monitoring
This act creates the offense of illegal electronic monitoring, to protect citizens’ privacy and safety from spyware and tracking software being unknowingly installed or downloaded onto cell phones.

State Grain
Designates corn as the official state grain of the state of Illinois.

Read the rest of the over 200 bills becoming law on January 1st here
A statewide helpline has been launched to provide immediate assistance for those impacted by addiction to opioids and other substances. The telephone service line, 1-833-2-FINDHELP (1-833-234-6343), will be operated through the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH). The Helpline for Opioids and Other Substances is funded by federal grant dollars secured by the State of Illinois and can be accessed free of charge. 
The helpline is the latest step in Illinois lawmakers’ commitment to tackle the opioid crisis and combat the growing number of overdose deaths related to heroin, other opioids, and synthetics like fentanyl. Earlier this year the Governor unveiled the Opioid Action Plan and signed an executive order creating the Opioid Overdose Prevention and Intervention Task Force. The task force, chaired by Lt. Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti and IDPH Director Nirav Shah, was charged with building strategies that would help reduce projected opioid overdose-related deaths by one-third within the next three years. It has been holding hearings and gathering testimony from public-health professionals and law enforcement leaders on the dimensions of the crisis.  

Another policy established under Executive Order 2017-05 was a Standing Order to make the overdose reversal drug Naloxone (Narcan) available to first responders and members of communities across Illinois, without a prescription. 

Data shows that opioid overdoses are dramatically increasing, with 1,946 people killed in Illinois in 2016 up from 1,382 in 2015. In Cook County there were 970 opioid deaths in 2016, up from 546 in 2015. Opioids are killing more people every year than homicides or motor vehicle accidents. In addition, data from the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) estimates that approximately 248,000 Illinois residents need, but do not receive, treatment for illicit drug use.

The helpline will provide a confidential outlet for individuals experiencing opioid use disorders, their families and anyone affected by the disease. It will be staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week by specialists trained in evidence-based approaches to help connect callers with treatment and recovery-support services. 
Illinois celebrates it's birthday on December 3rd, the day the territory of Illinois was admitted to the union as the 25th State in 1818. On December 3rd, 2018, Illinois will celebrate it's 200th birthday. The State, historical organizations, towns, and others will spend the next year leading up to the bicentennial with a yearlong multimedia campaign and events across the state.  

Image result for illinois 200The Illinois Bicentennial Commission, created by Governor Rauner, is promoting a campaign called "Born Built, and Grown" to honor the people, places, and things that make Illinois great. 

You can learn more about the bicentennial and Illinois' history here.

I hope you and your family had a blessed Thanksgiving!

Giving Tuesday
Yesterday was Giving Tuesday, a social media holiday designed to kick off the charitable season. This unofficial holiday is appropriately celebrated the Tuesday after the blessings of Thanksgiving and the shopping “holidays” of Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday.

Over the weekend my family and I donated toys to the New Hope Food Pantry in Norwood Park.
I encourage you to do something this holiday season for those less fortunate. Everyone can give something, whether it is a gift, money, or just your time and effort. Click here to find local organizations and non-profits in your community.

The House recently debated, and failed to pass, a hotly contested piece of legislation. Senate Bill 1905 would have prohibited local governments from enacting “Right to Work” zones in their communities. It would prohibit local communities from allowing individual workers a choice in whether or not they want to pay union dues as a condition of employment.

I respect the great work unions do for our middle class and our communities. I do not support turning Illinois into a right to work state nor do I believe that Illinois is in danger of becoming one.

However, the bill went much further than I was comfortable with. One of the components of the bill would have made violations of the Act a criminal misdemeanor. This could have resulted in the jailing of local elected officials, which is an obvious overstep.

Image result for small business saturday

Saturday, November 25th is Small Business Saturday. This unofficial holiday began in 2010 to encourage people to shop local and shop small. Statistically, the weekend after Thanksgiving is the biggest shopping weekend of the year. This year, according to the National Retail Association more than 164 million people are expected to shop over the weekend and Cyber Monday.

"Small businesses are vital to the Illinois economy, their success is our success", Rep. McAuliffe said. "If you plan to shop this weekend, I encourage you to visit many of the small and family owned businesses in our community."

Illinois small business statistics:

  • ​1.2 million small businesses in Illinois (99.6% of Illinois businesses)
  • 2.4 million small business employees in Illinois (46% of all Illinois employees)
  • 311,609 minority-owned small businesses in Illinois
  • Small business makes up 90% of Illinois’ exporters
  • Small business created 43,836 net jobs in 2014
  • Construction, real estate & arts, entertainment & recreation are the three largest small business employers in Illinois
Small businesses can create personalized #shopsmall online marketing tools here
State Representative Michael McAuliffe today was appointed to the House Task Force on Sexual Discrimination and Harassment by House Republican Leader Jim Durkin. The task force will conduct a comprehensive review of the legal and social consequences of sexual discrimination and harassment, in both the public and private sectors.

The task force was created by House Resolution 687, which was unanimously passed last week in Springfield. In the final week of veto session, the Illinois General Assembly took many steps to address sexual harassment, including passing comprehensive legislation and conducting new training. This outpouring of response was prompted recent revelations about the harmful culture in Springfield and Illinois politics for women. 

"Like many I have been concerned, disappointed, and outraged by what I have heard in recent weeks," Rep. McAuliffe said. "We in Springfield must do better if we are to lead this state by example. I am committed to working on concrete steps to rectify the culture in Springfield."

The task force will file a report with the General Assembly by the end of next year outlining the best practices to improve procedures for accepting sexual discrimination and harassment complaints, process and structure for reporting allegations, process for filing civil complaints, process for filing complaints with Department of Human Rights, and prevention of sexual discrimination and harassment in the public and private sector. 

Former members of the Guard and Reserve who do not have any periods of active duty other than their initial active duty for training and annual training are now eligible to receive “Veteran” on their driver’s licenses. "This bill ensures that every man and woman who has served this state and nation is recognized,” said Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs Director Erica Jeffries. "Our veterans have given so much for us, and I am glad Illinois is taking this step to expand designations."

Last year, Governor Bruce Rauner signed Senate Bill 2173 to allow National Guard members and reservists to obtain the veteran identifier on their Illinois driver's license.

In order to receive that designation, veterans of the Guard and Reserve are required to present a copy of their certificate of release or discharge from initial active duty, certified and stamped by the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs (IDVA), to the Secretary of State.

Prior to receiving this stamp they must provide documentation of satisfactorily completing the time for which they were contracted to attend monthly drills and annual training. Presentation of one of the following documents will be accepted as proof of service:

1. Army or Air National Guard NGB 22 Report of Separation and Record of Service

2. Army Reserve DARP FM 249-2E Chronological Statement of
Retirement Points.

3. Navy Reserve NRPC 1070-124 Annual Retirement Point Record

4. Air Force Reserve AF 526 Point Summary Sheet

5. USMC Reserve NAVMC 798 Reserve Retirement Credit Report

6. Coast Guard CG 4175 Coast Guard Reserve Annual or Terminal
Statement of Retirement Points.

Veterans are encouraged to contact or visit a local IDVA office for assistance obtaining any of the above documents. To find the closest Veteran Service Officer (VSO) go to www.illinois.gov/veterans or call 800-437-9824.
Rep. McAuliffe pictured with Commander Looney from the Chicago Police Department at the
First Responders Mass this week at Notre Dame High School.

Chicago, IL … Yesterday, the Cook County Board of Commissioners overwhelmingly voted in favor of repealing the unpopular Cook County Sweetened Beverage Tax. State Representative Michael P. McAuliffe (R-Chicago), who recently filed legislation at the state level to repeal the tax, issued the following statement:

“I was pleased to see the Cook County Board take the necessary steps in repealing the controversial pop tax this week. The tax, which was not properly thought out, simply was not going to deliver what was promised and only put a heavier financial burden on the shoulders of the Cook County taxpayers. I applaud those who voted in favor of the repeal for listening to their constituents and ending the tax.”

The Cook County Board voted in favor of the repeal on a 15-2 vote, with an effective date of December 1st, 2017.
Rep. McAuliffe speaks to local community and business leaders at the "Breakfast with Your Legislators" event hosted by the Edison Park, Norwood Park and Edgebrook-Sauganash Chambers of Commerce.
State Representative McAuliffe with fellow co-sponsors of Maine Township Property Tax Appeal Seminar.
Pictured are (L-R): Cook County Commissioner Peter Silvestri, Maine Township Assessor Susan Krey,
Cook County Board of Review Commissioner Dan Patlak and State Representative Michael McAuliffe.
Rep. McAuliffe greets 20th District resident at the shred truck event held this past
Saturday at the Salvation Army in Norridge.

Rep. McAuliffe assists in disposing of documents in a bin to be shredded.
Journal & Topics Newspaper

While the Fly Quiet program continues to be on track for O’Hare Airport, the test rotation schedule for night time traffic is about to go away for a bit.

The current three-month test, known as Test 3, started in mid-July, immediately after the conclusion of a three-month Test 2 (April to July). Test 3 will end in mid-October.

Unless a more permanent rotation plan is introduced later, predictability is what will be missing.

Between 10 p.m. and 7 a.m., the airport designates one arrival runway and one for departures. Normally, there is no public warning which runways will carry the traffic over which communities.

An ad hoc committee of the O’Hare Noise Compatibility Commission and the Chicago Dept. of Aviation were given unprecedented opportunities more than a year ago to suggest to the Federal Aviation Administration ways to rotate the overnight traffic so communities under the flight tracks could have predictable, quieter weeks to sleep.

While relief has occurred, especially in Test 1, from July to December 2016, the elephant in the room is the guaranteed decommissioning of Runway 15-33 (northwest and southeast) next spring.

To read the rest of the article, click HERE.

State Representative Michael P. McAuliffe participates in the ribbon-cutting for Raising Canes, a chicken fingers restaurant, in Harwood Heights.
State Representative Michael P. McAuliffe attends the grand opening of two new bocce ball courts at Norwood Park in the 41st Ward of Chicago. Pictured with State Representative McAuliffe are (L-R) 41st Ward Alderman Anthony Napolitano and Cook County Commissioner Peter Silvestri.
Equifax, an Atlanta based credit-rating agency, suffered a security breach on July 29th that exposed sensitive information of millions of Americans. Such information included social security numbers, driver’s license numbers, credit card numbers, birthdays, and addresses. It has been determined that 5.4 million Illinois residents have been affected by the breach.

The company has set up a website where you can check if your personal information was affected by the breach: www.equifaxsecurity2017.com.

Attorney General Lisa Madigan has opened an investigation into the recent security breach, and called on Equifax to provide free credit freezes to all Illinois residents in the wake of the breach. She urges Illinois residents to take the Equifax breach seriously and take steps to protect themselves from the possibility of identity theft:

· Seriously consider placing a credit freeze on your credit reports with all 3 consumer reporting agencies: TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax;

· Regularly request your free credit reports, inspect them closely, and promptly dispute any unauthorized accounts;

· Inspect all financial account statements closely and promptly dispute any unauthorized charges;

· Consider placing alerts on your financial accounts so your financial institution alerts you when money above a pre-designated amount is withdrawn;

· Beware of potential phishing emails; don't open any email messages or attachments from unknown senders and do not click on any unknown links. Fraudsters will frequently send coercive and misleading emails threatening account suspension or worse if sensitive information is not provided. Remember, businesses will never ask customers to verify account information via email. If in doubt, contact the business in question directly for verification and to report phishing emails; and

· Be on the lookout for spoofed email addresses. Spoofed email addresses are those that make minor changes in the domain name, frequently changing the letter O to the number zero, or the lowercase letter l to the number one. Scrutinize all incoming email addresses to ensure that the sender is truly legitimate.

With questions on the data breach, you can contact Equifax at 866-447-7559, or the Illinois Attorney General’s Identity Theft Hotline at 1 (866) 999-5630.

This week, the Cook County Board of Commissioners are set to take action on an ordinance to repeal the controversial Sweetened Beverage Tax. The tax has been met with an overwhelmingly negative reception and there has been much public backlash.

In the event that the ordinance does not pass at the Board Meeting, State Representative Michael P. McAuliffe (R-Chicago) is prepared to continue to push the passage of House Bill 4082 which will immediately repeal the tax.

McAuliffe said in anticipation of the vote:

"Enough is enough. The people of Cook County were once again subjected to a non-vetted tax that will only hurt them and business owners alike. If the ordinance is not permanently repealed this week, I will pursue the passage of my bill at the state level that will immediately repeal the unfair tax."

Rep. McAuliffe filed House Bill 4082 on August 15th and introduced the measure to the public during a press conference that same day. At this time, the bill is awaiting a hearing in the House Revenue and Finance Committee.

To read more about the pop tax, click here.

State Representative Michael P. McAuliffe (R-Chicago) applauds the signing of the landmark education funding plan and explains how it will impact students from all over the state. McAuliffe hosted the bill signing ceremony in the 20th District at Ebinger Elementary School.
State Representative Michael P. McAuliffe (R-Chicago) addresses attendees at the bill signing ceremony for the education funding plan. The event was held in the 20th District at Ebinger Elementary School
in the Edison Park neighborhood of Chicago.

State Representative Michael P. McAuliffe (R-Chicago) rises to speak in support of SB 1947, the education funding compromise.
Springfield, IL … This afternoon the Illinois House of Representative passed Senate Bill 1947 which reforms the Illinois education funding plan. The legislation, which passed on a 73-34-3 vote, is a result of bipartisan negotiations that sought to fix the discrepancies in one of the most inequitable school funding formulas in the nation.

State Representative Michael P. McAuliffe (R-Chicago), who voted in favor of the bill, released the following statement:

“Today the Illinois House took a stand in favor of an education funding plan that will increase the funding for all Illinois schools at historic levels. The fact that Illinois is home to one of the most unequal funding formulas in our country is disgraceful, so I am encouraged to see compromise in our chamber to ensure that none of our schools are left behind.”

“As a representative of a district that has a diverse collection of schools, including CPS, suburban and parochial, I was proud to vote in favor of Senate Bill 1947. Regardless of the type of education, this funding plan seeks to ensure that all students receive a quality education. This was a realistic, bipartisan compromise and I look forward to continuing to work with my colleagues in providing an equitable education for all of our state’s students.”

Senate Bill 1947 having passed the Illinois House of Representatives, now advances to the Senate for consideration. If passed by the Senate and signed into the law, the bill would become effective immediately.
Chicago, IL – State Reps. Michael McAuliffe (R-Chicago), Christine Winger (R-Bloomingdale), Peter Breen (R-Lombard), Grant Wehrli (R-Naperville), and Keith Wheeler (R-Oswego) today introduced legislation, House Bill 4082, to immediately repeal the one-cent-per-ounce Cook County Sweetened Beverage Tax. The tax, which went into effect on August 2, will result in Cook County consumers having to pay on average 67 percent more for a 2-liter of pop, 43 percent more for a gallon of juice drink or sweetened iced tea, and 29 percent more for a 12-pack.

“This pop tax is a repeated example of another financial burden being imposed upon the people of Cook County. The vetting of this measure was short-sighted and irresponsible as roll-outs of similar pop taxes in other cities have proven to be not effective and even harmful to the local economy,” stated Rep. McAuliffe. “I spent this past weekend in my district and the feedback against this tax was overwhelmingly negative. The taxpayers are understandably frustrated and there is a lot of confusion.”

“Longstanding small businesses that have been pivotal in the community are going to suffer, especially when residents can walk less than a mile to a different store in a county that isn’t affected by the tax to buy their goods,” said Rep. Winger. “Residents will choose a different store over one they have gone to for years to avoid paying this. I have heard first-hand the severity this tax has already had in its first two weeks. Some say sales have already dropped 80% on certain products.”

Specifically, House Bill 4082 would prevent any home rule county from imposing a tax on sweetened beverages based on volume sold. It applies to any county ordinance adopted on or before the effective date of the bill, repealing the existing Cook County ordinance.

"On the heels of being hit with a 32% income tax hike, the residents of Cook County were immediately saddled with a costly tax on sweetened beverages,” said Rep. Breen. “It's time for government to live within its means and quit turning to taxpayers for more of their hard-earned money. Through this legislation, the Cook County beverage tax will be repealed, and a law will be in place to prohibit any similar taxes in other Illinois counties."

“Democrats not only want you to keep ‘drinking the Koolaid’, they want you to pay more for the privilege,” said Rep. Wehrli. “This tax hits families directly in their wallets. It could also cost us some of the thousands of good jobs the soft drink industry provides Illinois families. It’s no surprise that nearly 87% of Cook County residents oppose this tax, and we stand with them.”

“The pop tax is crushing small and family-owned retailers in Cook County, the very men and women who are the backbone of our local and state economy," Rep. Wheeler said. “Cook County politicians cannot hide from the fact that their tax-and-spend policies continue to fail the working families and job creators in every community from Lake-Cook Road to the Indiana state line.”

The City of Philadelphia recently enacted a similar, 1.5-cent-an-ounce tax on sweetened beverages to pay for universal preschool. Following the implementation of the tax, beverage sales fell by as much as 50 percent and more than 400 jobs were lost. Additionally, actual beverage tax collections for the first six months are $6.9 million below the city’s estimate of $46.2 million.

The impact on Cook County is expected to be even more devastating. An economic analysis in 2016 found that the beverage tax, which Cook County estimates to provide $67.5 million in new revenue in 2017 and $200.6 million in 2018, could result in a loss of 6,100 jobs, $321 million in lost wages and $1.3 billion in lost economic activity. There have already been a number of complaints and lawsuits as retailers struggle to comply with the implementation of the tax.

Last week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture recently notified Cook County that portions of the tax were illegal and that the state could stand to lose more than $86 million in federal funding if the problems are not resolved.

Additionally, the Illinois Liquor Control Commission has voiced its concerns with Cook County as well, stating that the new tax “may lead to practices that violate the Illinois Liquor Control Act.”

Springfield, IL …. State Representative Michael P. McAuliffe (R-Chicago) has joined his colleagues in co-sponsoring crucial legislation that would guard taxpayers from lawsuits instigated by government bodies in response to lawful challenges of a tax. House Bill 4080, filed earlier this week, gained traction in response to the lawsuit filed by the Cook County Board President against the Illinois Retail Merchants Association (IRMA).

Earlier this summer, IRMA was successfully able to obtain a stay on the sweetened beverage tax spearheaded by the Cook County Board President. The tax, which was intended to begin on July 1st, was delayed pending a legal review. After that period ended, a retaliatory lawsuit was filed by the Board President against IRMA seeking the alleged $17 million in lost revenue.

“It is a sad day when a leader of a government body files a vengeful lawsuit against taxpayers with their own tax dollars. Citizens of our country are protected with certain freedoms that allow them to challenge government action. The thought of an official bringing forth a lawsuit in retaliation to a taxpayer or citizen group because they exercised their rights is unimaginable,” stated Rep. McAuliffe.

Although the lawsuit against IRMA has been since withdrawn, McAuliffe believes that House Bill 4080 is necessary to protect against future, comparable lawsuits:

“The citizens of Illinois need to be assured that their government works for them. It is important that they feel empowered to challenge controversial taxes or measures and not feel threatened with retaliatory action.”

House Bill 4080 specifically addresses the government’s ability to file lawsuit seeking monetary reimbursement in response to a temporary restraining order or injunction on a legal challenge to a tax.
Rep. McAuliffe speaks to attendees of the Senior Citizens Rules of the Road refresher course
at the White Eagle Banquet Hall.

Senior Citizens attend the second of the three offered Rules of the Road refresher courses in Schiller Park.

The final Rules of the Road refresher course was held at the Salvation Army where over 120 senior citizens were in attendance.

Yesterday, the Illinois House of Representatives voted to override the Governor’s veto of both the spending plan and permanent income tax increase. State Representative Michael P. McAuliffe (R-Chicago) released the following statement:

“Again, I am saddened by the disregard for the Illinois taxpayer displayed by yesterday’s override vote to institute a permanent income tax hike. I will reiterate that this plan does not include any reform or address the billions in unpaid bills or pension liability,” explained McAuliffe. “The credit agencies flat-out stated that this budget does not properly begin to fix Illinois’ negative fiscal climate and the permanent income tax increase only puts a further burden on the taxpayer. We could have done better.”

McAuliffe continued, “While I am disappointed by the direction taken yesterday, I will remain committed to representing the people of the 20th District and working with my colleagues to ensure that Illinois returns to a path of fiscal stability.”
Springfield IL … Last night, the Illinois House of Representatives voted on a permanent increase to the state income tax. State Representative Michael P. McAuliffe (R-Chicago) issued the following statement:

“I am extremely disappointed the House took action on a budget that further increases the tax burden on hard-working Illinois families and small business owners. The people of Illinois were handed a permanent income tax hike without a property tax freeze or any hint of reform. Even worse, this budget fails to address the $15 billion backlog in unpaid bills and the $130 billion pension debt,” said McAuliffe.

“On Friday, good-faith budget negotiators were making sound progress on an agreed, compromised budget. Unfortunately, those talks were derailed Sunday afternoon as a last-minute, unagreed spending plan and permanent tax increase was filed and voted on within a few short hours. All without proper vetting,” continued McAuliffe.

McAuliffe went on to say, “Since the beginning of this budget impasse, I have been listening to the concerns of my constituents and it has been clear that they want real reforms that address the problems with our state, not a standalone permanent tax increase.”

“While, last night’s vote did not result in the outcome that I had hoped, I will remain committed to working with my colleagues in search of a compromise that will make Illinois a strong, proud state,” concluded Rep. McAuliffe.

Senate Bill 9 and Senate Bill 6, the permanent income tax increase and spending plan respectively, will advance to the Illinois Senate for consideration.
Springfield, IL … Yesterday the House unanimously adopted Senate Joint Resolution 39 which designates the bridge on Irving Park Road that crosses over the Des Plaines River as the “Corporal Donald W. Bollman Bridge.” State Representative Michael P. McAuliffe (R-Chicago) worked in partnership with State Senator John Mulroe (D-Chicago) on the effort to honor the sacrifice and bravery of Corporal Donald W. Bollman, as he was killed in action during the Vietnam War.

“The Vietnam War is an important part of our history as the lives of so many families were impacted,” said McAuliffe. “Corporal Bollman answered his call of duty and gave the ultimate sacrifice. We should forever be grateful for his bravery during a tumultuous time period and I hope that this bridge designation serves as small gesture of our state’s endless gratitude.”

Village President Jim Chmura expressed appreciation from the Village of Norridge, Corporal Bollman’s hometown:

“On behalf of myself and the Norridge Village Board we are very pleased to hear that the State of Illinois will be honoring the memory of Norridge’s very own Corporal Donald W. Bollman by having the bridge at Irving Park Road in Schiller Park renamed ‘Corporal Donald W. Bollman Bridge.’ Corporal Bollman made the ultimate sacrifice in Vietnam at the age of 23 to ensure the freedom of all Americans. He is a true hero.”

Corporal Donald W. Bollman was killed in action on March 1, 1967 at the age of twenty-three. He was a life-long resident of Norridge, Illinois and was the recipient of the Purple Heart and Bronze Star with a V for Valor for his heroism.

Bipartisan legislation result of successful negotiations between Rauner Administration, City of Chicago and General Assembly

SPRINGFIELD – Governor Bruce Rauner today signed a landmark criminal justice bill in his capitol office with Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson, Sen. Kwame Raoul (D-Chicago), House Republican Leader Jim Durkin (R-Western Springs), and other members of the General Assembly. The bill is a result of successful negotiations between the administration, City of Chicago and the General Assembly that will crack down on criminals who are repeat gun offenders, safely reduce the prison population, and create a more rehabilitative criminal justice system.

“This legislation provides new tools for law enforcement and the Courts to take on violent crime, while providing a second chance for non-violent, first time offenders,” Governor Rauner said. “This shows what is possible when leaders at all levels of government work together, and across party lines, to address the challenges facing our cities and state. It took several months of hard work, compromise and bipartisan cooperation – but together, we got it done.”

SB 1722 makes a number of changes to the criminal justice system to improve how we punish and rehabilitate gun offenders, as well as combat gang violence in Illinois. The bill will strengthen sentencing guidelines if they have committed a gun crime before. It also creates a First-Time Weapon Offender Diversion Program to address the underlying reasons why a young adult may have committed the offense.

The Illinois General Assembly has been called into special session by the Governor to continue to rectify the on-going budget impasse. State Representative Michael P. McAuliffe (R-Chicago) headed to Springfield hopeful for a resolution:

“Now is the time, more than ever, to get a budget deal accomplished. Illinois needs a comprehensive balanced budget with responsible reforms,” stated Rep. McAuliffe. “I am optimistic that with some additional good-faith negotiations, all four caucuses of the General Assembly will be satisfied with a compromise that works to end this impasse and put a stop to the fiscal instability. I have also opted to decline my allotted per diem and travel expenses."

The General Assembly will be in session for nine continuous days ending on June 30.
Journal & Topics Newspaper

The committee tasked with reviewing proposals for keeping the skies above O’Hare International Airport quieter by rotating traffic in overnight hours has voted, nearly unanimously, to forward a third test schedule to the O’Hare Noise Compatibility Commission.

ONCC is expected to vote on June 3 on whether to activate the test.

The first test, run for 25 weeks in the second half of 2016, was designed to see whether noise relief would be possible by alternating arrival and departure runways for overnight traffic. This meant different communities had predictable noise at night but no one had it every night.
The first test ended in December, but was popular enough to prompt a second rotation, with some tweaks, which started as a 12-week test at the end of April.

Some ONCC speakers have argued that there should be a delay, between activating new tests, for receiving public comment.

Click HERE for the full article.

State Representative Michael P. McAuliffe welcomed Robert Okazaki and his team from Avenues to Independence, in Park Ridge, to the Capitol. Avenues to Independence is an organization dedicated to providing homes, jobs and community living programs for adults with developmental disabilities. 

State Representative Michael P. McAuliffe introduced House Resolution 184, which was adopted unanimously by the House of Representatives. The Resolution encourages State of Illinois elected officials and those who are elected to represent state universities to play the state song at official events. The state song, entitled “Illinois”, was adopted as the official song in 1925.

(Pictured: State Representative McAuliffe, along with colleague Representative Bryant, pose with 20th District resident and inspiration behind HR 184, Stan Banash.)

May 8th through May 12th is Teacher Appreciation Week! Be sure to thank a teacher for all their hard work!


O'HARE — Starting Sunday, residents all over the Northwest Side will spend a week hearing hundreds of flights whoosh over their heads — followed by seven days of quiet.
That on-again-off-again pattern defines the second round of the city's Fly Quiet Runway Rotation test, a three-month program that aims to spread the burden of overnight jet noise equally among neighborhoods and suburbs surrounding O'Hare Airport.
Unlike last year's rotation program, which ran continuously for six months from July to December, the test approved last month begins Sunday and ends on July 22. The full schedule is posted online.
The program will likely "dovetail" into a third test, drawn up to exclude a runway that's marked for closure in 2018, according to Aaron Frame, a deputy commissioner for the city's Department of Aviation.
Click HERE to read the full article.