This week's Illinois State Association of Counties (ISACo) News and Views e-newsletter includes remaining key session dates, lists ISACo-tracked bills that advanced during the week of May 1-5, links to a report with newly filed amendments pertinent to counties, reports on the final COVID-19 Disaster Declaration extension, offers an update on Medicaid eligibility redeterminations following a three year pause, includes an update on State revenues and information about Personal Property Replacement Tax (PPRT) and Local Government Distributive Fund (LGDF) payments for State Fiscal Year (SFY) 2024, announces grant funding for affordable housing and community revitalization, links to a report prepared by the Illinois Immigrant Impact Task Force, provides an update on litigation challenging Illinois' ban on assault weapons, reports on Cook County's Lobby Day, includes a link to register for the upcoming National Association of Counties (NACo) Annual Conference in Travis County, Texas, highlights ISACo corporate partner PMA-IPRIME and invites counties to join ISACo.
Key Remaining Session Dates
The Illinois Senate was in session Tuesday through Friday of last week and cancelled planned session days for Saturday and Sunday. The Illinois House was in session Tuesday through Thursday. Both chambers return to session on Monday, May 8.
May 11: Deadline – Third Reading for Substantive House Bills in the Senate
May 12: Deadline – Third Reading for Substantive Senate Bills in the House
May 19: Adjournment
Bills Approved by Both Chambers
The following ISACo tracked bills* were approved by both chambers last week and will next be considered by the Governor:
HB 217 - Eminent Domain-Will County (Support)
HB 1067 - Superintendent of Public Works (Support)
HB 1236 - Competitive Bidding-Counties (No Position)
HB 1496 - Code of Corrections-Demographic Data (No Position)
HB 2223 - Juvenile Court-Jurisdiction and Venue (No Position)
HB 2278 - Environmental Response Project (No Position)
HB 2332 - Coroner and Medical Examiner Fees (Support)
HB 2390 - Police Officers-Return to Duty (No Position)
HB 2831 - Task Force on Homelessness (Support)
HB 3396 - Labor Dispute-Violation (No Position)
HB 3491 - Prevailing Wage-Contractors (No Position)
SB 101 - Insurance-Pediatric Autoimmune Coverage (No Position)
SB 214 - Disability Illness (Oppose)
Bills Approved by the House or Senate
The following ISACo tracked bills were approved by the full House or Senate during the week of May 1-5 and await consideration by the opposite chamber:
HB 2539 - Local Government-Compensation (No Position)
HB 2447 - Open Meetings Act-Childcare Obligations (Support)
HB 2418 - Expungement-Trafficking Victim (No Position)
HB 2487 - Justice40 Oversight Committee (No Position)
HB 3253 - Criminal Procedure-Deceptive Tactics (No Position)
HB 3370 - Prevailing Wage-Power Washing (Oppose)
HB 3351 - Illinois Solar for All-Prevailing Wage (No Position)
HB 3400 - Illinois Works Jobs Program (No Position)
SB 1555 - Packaging and Paper Stewardship (Support)
Bills Approved by House/Senate Committees
The following ISACo tracked bills were approved by House or Senate Committees during the week of May 1-5:
HB 2 - DHS-Overdose Prevention Sites (No Position)
HB 1076 - Counties Code-Lease of Farmland (No Position)
HB 3129 - Equal Pay Act-Pay Scale (No Position)
HB 3641 - Capital Development Board-Local Government Regulation (Oppose)
HB 3751 - Local Government Police Applicants (No Position)
Amendments Filed Last Week
A list of amendments filed for ISACo tracked bills during the week of May 1-5 is available via this link. In some cases, an amendment includes provisions that, if adopted, make the legislation an ISACo-tracked bill.
*An ISACo tracked bill includes bills that directly or tangentially impact county finances and operations, bills that may be of interest to county officials for the performance of their duties and legislation presented "for your information." ISACo positions of "support" or "oppose" are usually reserved for bills that directly or tangentially impact county finances and operations. ISACo also supports member county initiatives that are consistent with ISACo's County Platform.
Disaster Proclamation Extended
On April 28, Governor JB Pritzker signed a new Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation that extends the state's COVID-19 disaster declaration through May 11, 2023. The COVID-19 public health emergency will expire after May 11, 2023.
The Governor also issued COVID-19 Executive Order (EO) 2023-07. This EO re-issues several previous COVID-19-related EOs.
Per P.A. 101-0640, remote meetings remain a permissible option for local governments through May 11 if certain criteria are met. Additional information about this authority is available via this link.
As the COVID-19 public health emergency winds down, the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services (IDHFS) has begun the process of redetermining Medicaid eligibility. Medicaid redeterminations were paused for the past three years under the Continuous Coverage Requirement. Medicaid rolls increased from 2.9 million prior to the pandemic to roughly 3.9 million today. Illinois estimates anywhere from 300,000 to 750,000 people could lose Medicaid coverage during the redetermination process.
Governor Pritzker promised there will be no “coverage cliff” in Illinois as Medicaid redeterminations begin. Instead, Illinois will use a rolling redetermination process through mid-2024. Governor Pritzker warned that the first week of May is a critical time as the first round of recipients go through the resumed renewal process.
In the month of June, approximately 113,600 cases in Illinois are up for renewal. IDHFS was able to automatically renew 51% of Medicaid customers due in June.
Additional information is available via this link.
State Revenue Update
Legislators are facing continuing budget pressures as they work to finalize the State Fiscal Year (SFY) 2024 budget. Last week, IDHFS Director Theresa Eagleson informed the Senate Appropriations Committee that the estimated cost for Illinois to continue providing health care coverage to non-citizens otherwise ineligible for Medicaid benefits has been revised upward to $1.1 billion (up from the end of March estimate of $990 million) for the upcoming fiscal year. The new estimate is now $880 million beyond the $220 million estimate included in Governor Pritzker’s February budget proposal.
The General Assembly's Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability (COGFA) announced it was downsizing its revenue projections for the current fiscal year by $738 million. COGFA did not, however, alter its projection for State Fiscal Year SFY2024. The Commission's projections have been somewhat higher than calculations made by the Governor’s Office of Management and Budget (GOMB) and it appears the more conservative estimates will be used for the development of the SFY2024 state budget.
IDOR Statement on Personal Property Tax and Local Government Distributive Fund Allocations
Each tax year, the Illinois Department of Revenue (IDOR) distributes Personal Property Replacement Tax (PPRT) and Local Government Distributive Fund (LGDF) distributions to local taxing districts as estimated payments. By statute, estimated payments made to local taxing districts must be reconciled with final tax returns once IDOR has received them. The reallocation of these funds has been minimal over the past several years, ranging from 1.38% to 0.16%. After IDOR completed its review of tax year 2021 returns, however, it calculated a 5% reallocation. The reallocation in fund distributions that will begin in SFY2024, which is required by state statutes, will result in an increase in LGDF allocations and reductions in PPRT allocations to taxing districts.
The full statement is available via this link.
Affordable Housing and Community Revitalization Grant Funding
On May 4, the Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) announced $15 million in available grant funding to support affordable housing and community revitalization efforts across the state. Available under the second round of IHDA's Strong Communities Program (SCP), the initiative provides funding to units of local government and land bank authorities for the acquisition, maintenance, rehabilitation and demolition of abandoned residential properties in their communities. The program is designed to support local revitalization efforts and attract further investment in communities that may lack the resources needed to tackle vacant, abandoned and deteriorated properties.
A link to the application - including details on an informational webinar at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, May 16 - can be found here. Applications will be accepted through 3 p.m. on Wednesday, June 7, 2023.
Additional information is available via this link.
Immigrant Impact Task Force Report
The Illinois Immigrant Impact Task Force (IITF) released a report examining various issues affecting immigrant, refugee and limited English proficiency communities. The report shares recommendations the State can follow to improve services to immigrant communities. The Task Force identified thirteen issues in the legislation ranging from citizenship assistance, business development, education access, discrimination prevention, immigration detention, COVID-19 relief, language access programs and more.
The full report is available via this link.
Assault Weapons Ban Back in Effect
In our May 1 News and Views e-newsletter, we reported on the decision by a federal judge from the Southern District of Illinois to temporarily block enforcement of the ban on firearms characterized as assault weapons. On May 4, a federal appellate judge from the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals agreed to stay that enforcement block while the decision is being reviewed. This means that, for the time being, Illinois' ban on assault weapons is back in effect.
Cook County Officials and Staff Advocate for County Priorities in Springfield
ISACo welcomed Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, Cook County Commissioners and staff to Springfield during the County's Lobby Day on May 4. Cook County held a breakfast at the Abraham Lincoln Hotel followed by a day of meetings with legislators. ISACo hosted a luncheon for attendees and would like to recognize and thank our friends and partners at the United Counties Council of Illinois (UCCI) for assisting us in arranging a venue for the luncheon. A long day of constructive and focused advocacy concluded with a reception at ISACo's office. Pictures from the Lobby Day event are available via this link.
Please contact ISACo at firstname.lastname@example.org if your county is planning a trip to Springfield. It would be our pleasure to be of service in assisting your advocacy.
Registration for NACo Annual Conference
The 2023 National Association of Counties (NACo) Annual Conference will be held in Travis County, Texas from July 21-24. Participants from counties of all sizes come together to shape NACo's federal policy agenda, share proven practices and strengthen knowledge networks to help improve residents’ lives and the efficiency of county government. Join other Illinois county officials and staff members in Travis County for learning and relationship building! Registration and information about housing for conference attendees is available via this link.
CORPORATE SPONSOR SPOTLIGHT
This week's corporate partner spotlight highlights ISACo's partnership with Illinois Public Reserves Investment Management Trust™ (IPRIME™), is an investment pool for Municipal Treasurers acting on behalf of counties, townships, cities, towns, villages, libraries, park districts, water supply districts, fire protection districts, sanitary districts, housing authorities and other subdivisions of the State of Illinois.
The IPRIME Investment Shares Series is rated AAAm by Standard & Poor’s.
The Investment Shares Series is comprised of money market instruments having a maximum remaining maturity of one year (except U.S. government obligations that may have remaining maturities of up to two years).
The primary objectives of the Investment Shares Series are to offer the highest possible investment yield, protect principal, preserve liquidity and maintain Standard & Poor’s highest local government investment pool rating of AAAm. In addition, the Fund offers access to PMA Financial Network, LLC’s Fixed Income and Deposit Programs. With the experience and expertise of PMA, the Investment Shares Series grants investors access to a powerful investment management team that functions with a high standard of vision, synergy, and quality.
Click here to visit their website.
Click on this link to learn more about the benefits and opportunities available through ISACo's Corporate Partner Program.
Become an ISACo Member!
Is your county a member of ISACo? If not, why not?
ISACo is a statewide association whose mission is to empower county officials to provide excellent service to their residents.
ISACo member counties are comprised of forward-thinking public servants who recognize that the challenges confronting county governments require new and innovative ideas, collaborative solutions and collective advocacy at the state and federal levels of government.
Members of the association will benefit from education and training opportunities, peer-to-peer networking, shared resources and robust representation before policymakers at various levels of government. ISACo creates and connects county officials to these opportunities and successfully equips them to make counties ideal places to live, work and play.
If your county is interested in discussing membership in ISACo, please contact Executive Director Joe McCoy at (217) 679-3368 or email@example.com. ISACo member counties are listed here. Thank you for your consideration.