The Illinois House and Senate are adjourned until April 9th. Speaker Madigan sets the schedule and all told the House has met for just 12 days this year. When the House returns, we will be in session nearly every day until scheduled adjournment on May 31st. By then we are expected to have passed a budget. However, the House has yet to adopt a revenue estimate and has failed to do so for years. This estimate serves as a taxpayer protection so we don't spend more money than we have available. As a result, over the past few years we have had budget deficits ultimately culminating in last year's tax hike.
It can be incredibly difficult to pass meaningful legislation and make tough budgetary choices in an election year. Increasingly partisan politics means neither side wants to give the other a "win".

Gun Legislation Update
Both within Illinois and across the nation, public safety is under threat from gun violence and mass shootings. We need to give our law enforcement officials, our regulatory agencies, and our communities the tools they need to help prevent tragedies across the state. We can do that while maintaining a respect for an individual's 2nd amendment rights.The Illinois House has responded with the following legislation:
Today House Republican Leader Jim Durkin appointed State Representative Michael McAuliffe to serve on the Firearm Public Awareness Task Force. The task force was created by House Resolution 648, which passed the House on February 28th. 

HR 648 reconstitutes a task force that expired in 2012 and was originally responsible for finding and analyzing data from states with concealed carry laws and the number of handgun crimes in each state before and after the laws went in to effect. Illinois’ own concealed carry law was adopted in 2014. 

The new reiteration of the Firearm Public Awareness Task Force will analyze the distribution of shootings in regions across the state, the flow of illegal guns into Illinois from other states, the conditions and gun dealer practices that facilitate straw purchases, and states with the best practices for regulating handguns and rifles. 

Rep. McAuliffe was one of five members of the Illinois House Republicans to be selected for the task force and the only one whose district includes parts of Chicago, a city plagued with gun violence. In addition to state legislators, the task force will include representatives from the policing community, gun violence advocates, the Illinois’ Department of Public Health and the Cook County State’s Attorney’s office.