SPRINGFIELD – A Dec. 28 ruling by a Kankakee County Circuit Judge declaring the pretrial release portion of the SAFE-T Act unconstitutional is not surprising, according to State Sen. Jil Tracy (R-Quincy), who says she has never supported the controversial law or the way it was forced through the Senate in late-night lame-duck session on Jan. 13, 2021.
“The Dec. 28 court ruling is a very positive development that addresses the heavy opposition from front-line public safety personnel about the controversial no cash bail provision that was set to become law on Jan. 1, 2023,” Tracy said.
State’s attorneys and law enforcement personnel from across Illinois have talked for months about how their work – and the ultimate safety of their communities – will be threatened when some provisions of the state’s controversial overhaul of its criminal justice system take effect next year.
“Some changes were made the to the SAFE-T Act – approved Dec. 1 by the General Assembly and signed into law by the Governor Dec. 6 – but they do not fully address the front-line concerns of public safety personnel tasked with protecting Illinoisans.,” Tracy said. “I support our law enforcement personnel who work tirelessly to maintain public safety. There are still many hindrances and obstacles in the SAFE-T Act that will make our communities less safe.”
Tracy also notes that despite the recent changes, the SAFE-T Act will also still increase costs on police departments and local governments, meaning that many communities would likely see cuts to their local police departments, higher property taxes, or a combination of the two.