I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for the many messages expressing wishes for a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. It is my privilege to serve you and know you. I sincerely hope you enjoyed the 2019 holiday season!
As I also wish you a very Happy New Year, I want to share some important information with you in regard to new laws that passed in 2019 that took effect January 1, 2020.
The General Assembly passed hundreds of bills on to the Governor last year. He signed 591 bills and vetoed only 8.
There were some bills I proudly supported, and some that I vigorously opposed.
Not every piece of legislation passed and signed last year was monumental, but there were several substantive changes worth noting. Examples of these major legislative items include the legalization of marijuana for adult recreational use, the passage of expanded abortion rights and use of taxpayer dollars for abortive procedures, and an eventual increase in the minimum wage to $15/hr. I did not support any of the aforementioned policy changes.
The General Assembly took action itself to create some important task forces to study critical issues. Examples of these include the Joint Commission on Lobbying and Ethics Reform, Property Tax Reform, Firearms Public Awareness and Rural Economic Development Task Forces.
Although task forces can be an effective and useful tool, I believe the General Assembly can do more to work together to pass meaningful ethics and property tax reforms via the legislative process.
The lack of action and sheer lack of meetings by the ethics and property tax task forces is evidence that the Democrat majority is not serious about making positive changes on these critical issues.
The General Assembly and the Governor of the State of Illinois tackled some BIG issues in 2019. There were some laws I was proud to support. For instance, I sponsored and supported enhancing criminal penalties for violent acts committed in places of worship (HB 38, Public Act 101-223).
Want to know more? There are many news outlets that worked hard to provide information on more new laws for 2020. I’ve provided a few links below for your reference. Stay informed and know the law!
State Fire Marshal Offers Small Equipment Grants
The Office of the Illinois State Fire Marshal is now accepting applications for the competitive Small Equipment Grant program. The program allows fire departments, fire protection districts and township fire departments, as well as not-for-profit EMS providers to access up to $26,000 in grant funds for specific purposes as outlined in program documents.
Applications must be postmarked no later than February 29, 2020. A total of $3.5 million is available for this application cycle.
For further details please visit:
Rep. Severin Named to Lyme Disease Task Force
Marion….State Representative Dave Severin announced this week that he has been appointed to the Lyme Disease Task Force by House Republican Leader Jim Durkin. Rep. Severin co sponsored HB 889, now Public Act 101-0371 that requires an individual or group policy of accident and health insurance or managed care plan to provide coverage for long-term antibiotic therapy for a person with a tick-borne disease.
“Lyme disease is difficult to test for and diagnose and sometimes leads to complicated plans for treatment,” Severin said. “I am looking forward to studying this issue more closely and working to achieve positive results for individuals that contract lyme disease.”
Publc Act 101-606 charges the task force to study the use of prescription drugs and innovative therapies for children and adults with rare diseases, and make recommendations on legislation that could improve the care and treatment of adults or children with rare diseases.
The Task Force is supposed to submit a report of its findings and recommendations to the General Assembly and the Governor by March 1, 2020.
My office in Marion is open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. You can reach me any time by calling 618-440-5090 or contact me via my website at www.ilhousegop.org/contactseverin or by emailing Severin@ILHouseGOP.org
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