Millions of dollars in capital funding have been released to community colleges statewide as part of the Fiscal Year 2019 capital budget. Of those funds, Carl Sandburg College, John Wood Community College, and Spoon River College that serve students in District 47 will see over $320,000 in state funding.
Here's a look at some of the latest stories making headlines around the state.
The capital funds will go to repair and replace roofing and water pipes at WIU. An industrial chiller will also be repaired using the capital funding they will receive. These three projects totaling $9.5 million will update and upgrade systems that are in need of renovation.
Beardstown Houston Memorial Public Library will receive grant funding to further support their educational programming for students. The library will receive $15,166 through the Project Next Generation grant program through the Illinois Secretary of State’s office.
Several measures were signed into law this past week, including legislation focused on keeping students in-state, a package of bills tasked with addressing the growing opioid crisis and mental health issues in Illinois, and a measure to correct a oversight in current law to help victims of sexual assault. Also becoming law this past week was a measure allowing hunters to sport blaze pink, and a proposal to give motorists the option for two-year vehicle registration. In other news, Illinois received passing grades from the National Federation of Independent Business and Medicare card holders will no longer have their Social Security numbers listed on their Medicare cards.
Veterans with disabilities will now have their Disabled Veterans’ Standard Homestead Exemption follow them to a new residence, even if they move during the middle of the year, now that legislation supported by Senator Tracy has been signed into law.
Continuing efforts to keep students in-state, new laws focused on improving the affordability and effectiveness of Illinois’ higher education system were signed into law this week.
Five new state laws take steps toward addressing the state’s ongoing opioid crisis and improving access to mental health and substance abuse treatment. According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, opioids were involved in 80 percent of overdose deaths in 2016.
High school students will soon have another option to help prepare them for their future careers. Seeking to connect talented young people with good-paying jobs that don’t necessarily require a college degree, House Bill 5247 requires the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) to adopt rules that would allow students 16 years and older to participate in industry-based occupational apprenticeship programs.
State Sen. Jil Tracy (R-Quincy) applauded Governor Bruce Rauner’s recent signing of legislation she sponsored to correct an oversight in current law for victims of sexual assault.
More than 100 new laws were signed this week, advancing changes targeting the state’s teacher shortage, streamlining services for veterans, and giving a leg-up to Illinois’ entrepreneurs. Other measures became law that aim to increase senior citizens’ access to high-speed Internet services, guarantee the safety of Illinois residents’ drinking water, and encourage Illinois students to pursue their higher education in-state. Additionally, legislation was signed into law to support Illinois’ number one industry: agriculture.
Fire departments in Illinois that need assistance purchasing emergency vehicles can now apply for a loan through the Fire Truck and Ambulance Revolving Loan Programs. The Fire Truck and Ambulance Revolving Loan Programs are designed to assist emergency personnel purchase vehicles they otherwise couldn't afford.
Illinois has several new laws that address a backlog of applications for nursing home care, provide more first responders with medicines for allergy-related emergencies, boost protections for DCFS workers, and create a new lottery game to benefit families of fallen police officers.
Also during the week, Gov. Bruce Rauner signed a measure creating the Illinois Route 66 Centennial Commission, and the Illinois Department of Transportation is seeking proposals for projects that help children walk and bike to school.
The Quincy Veterans’ Home may now begin its five-year capital development plan following the signing of Senate Bill 3128 sponsored by State Sen. Jil Tracy, which provides for design-build contracting for the facility’s projects. Governor Bruce Rauner enacted the legislation on July 17 in Springfield.
Governor Rauner signed the Fiscal Year 2019 budget into law. See Senator Tracy's budget highlights.
Seeking to improve independence and transparency in the way legislative ethics complaints are handled in Illinois, State Senators Melinda Bush and Jil Tracy have sponsored bipartisan legislation approved unanimously by the Illinois Senate today making significant reforms to the Legislative Ethics Commission.
To commemorate an internationally renowned illusionist who called Monmouth home, State Sen. Jil Tracy sponsored a Senate Resolution to declare April 21 as "Magic Day in Monmouth
Paying tribute to a local fallen hero, State Sen. Jil Tracy has designated Illinois Route 78 in Mason County from the Illinois River in Havana to the Sangamon River in Lynchburg as the "Sgt. Don H. Lascelles Memorial Highway."
Following the Illinois Senate’s approval of the Fiscal Year 2019 budget, State Sen. Jil Tracy (R-Quincy) released the following statement highlighting key components of the proposal.
To correct an oversight in Illinois’ property law, State Sen. Jil Tracy and State Rep. Norine Hammond sponsored legislation that allows spouse-to-spouse transfers of wooded acreage without undergoing a property assessment—or incurring higher property taxes.
As Senator Tracy was working in Legislative Session in Springfield, she released the following statement to commend the City of Quincy's announcement to invest in a new water supply.
To reform the reporting of sexual offenses for victims unaware of a sexual crime—due to circumstances such as a drug-induced or unconscious encounters—legislation sponsored by State Sen. Jil Tracy extends the statute of limitations to allow for the prosecution of a sexual offense committed against an adult within one year after the victim’s discovery.
Republican leaders in the General Assembly introduced resolutions in the Illinois Senate and House this week calling on a revenue estimate to be certified for the upcoming Fiscal Year 2019 budget, which begins July 1.
Illinois families and businesses need certainty when it comes to planning for their future said Sen. Tracy and several Senate Republican legislators during a press conference announcing legislation that opposes any attempt to amend our state Constitution to allow for a graduated income tax rate, which would be another tax increase on Illinois families.
IDPH is reporting that the norovirus outbreak at the Illinois Veterans’ Home in Quincy last month is over. Approximately 20 individuals experienced symptoms for a few days. The agency found no indication the outbreak was due to kitchen operations upon inspection.
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