ISACo News and Views for June 24, 2024

6/24/2024 Nekya Hall

This week's Illinois State Association of Counties (ISACo) News and Views e-newsletter announces the passing of ISACo Vice President Dennis Deer, links to ISACo's 2024 post-session information webpage, includes Illinois employment rates for May, announces recipients for Illinois Lottery Veterans' Cash Grants, makes county officials aware of the West Nile Virus detected in 13 Illinois counties, invites county officials and staff to join an ISACo Policy Committee, shares what ISACo staff is reading to stay informed, provides a link for county officials and staff to register for the National Association of Counties (NACo) Annual Conference in July, announces upcoming National Association of Counties (NACo) webinar opportunities, highlights ISACo corporate partner Constellation Telecom and invites counties to join ISACo.

ISACo Mourns the Passing of Vice President Dennis Deer

With heavy hearts ISACo grieves the passing of ISACo Vice President and Cook County Commissioner Dennis Deer. Commissioner Deer passed away on Sunday, June 23, 2024.

Commissioner Deer was a champion for county government and, more importantly, a devoted family man, friend and mentor.
The following statement is attributed to ISACo President Matthew Prochaska:

“It is with profound sadness that we announce the passing of Commissioner Dennis Deer, Vice President of the Illinois State Association of Counties. Dennis was a pillar of strength and integrity, dedicated to serving the people of Illinois with passion and commitment. His leadership and vision were instrumental in advancing our mission and bridging communities across the state. Our deepest condolences go out to his family, friends, and colleagues. Dennis's legacy will continue to inspire us all. May he rest in peace.”

Information about Commissioner Deer's life and legacy he leaves behind was published in the Chicago Tribune and is available via this link.

ISACo's 2024 Post-Session Information Webpage

ISACo has dedicated a webpage (available via this link) for content associated with the 2024 spring legislative session. Current information includes our End-of-Session Summary Report and Bills Approved by Both Chambers: Legislation of Interest to Counties in 2024 document.  

Illinois Employment Rates in May

On June 21, 2024, the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) announced that the unemployment rate increased +0.1 percentage point to 4.9 percent, while nonfarm payrolls increased +12,700 in May, based on preliminary data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and released by IDES. The April revised unemployment rate was 4.8 percent, unchanged from the preliminary April unemployment rate. The April monthly change in payrolls was revised from the preliminary report, from +7,300 to +1,900 jobs. The May unemployment rate and payroll jobs estimate reflect activity for the week including the 12th.

The press release is available via this link. 

Illinois Lottery Veterans’ Cash Grants Awarded

The Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs (IDVA) announced nearly $700,000 in Veterans’ Cash Grant Program awards to Illinois organizations that provide vital services to veterans and their families across Illinois. Awardees will receive funding to address veteran homelessness, post-traumatic stress treatment, workforce development, education, transportation training and community development programs. The recipients are:

  • Legal Aid Chicago, Chicago (Cook County)
  • Freedom Paws Service Dogs Foundation, Chillicothe (Peoria County)
  • Goodwill of Central Illinois, Peoria (Peoria County) 
  • Brushwood Center and Ryerson Woods, Riverwoods (Lake County)
  • BraveHearts Therapeutic Riding & Educational Center, Harvard (McHenry County)
  • The Chicago Lighthouse for People Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired, Chicago
    (Cook County)
  • One Woman and a Broken Pencil Dare to Care Mobile Mission (OWBP),
    Westchester (Cook County)
  • Med Dash Pharmacy NFP, Westchester (Cook County)

The press release is available via this link. 

West Nile Virus Found in 13 Illinois Counties

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is reminding the public that along with the start of summer, mosquito season is underway in Illinois and with that comes the risk of West Nile virus (WNV), which has been reported in 13 counties around the state so far. The reminder comes as public health officials around the country are highlighting the importance of taking action to "Fight the Bite" during National Mosquito Control Awareness Week, June 16-22.

The press release is available via this link. 

Join ISACo's Policy Committees

ISACo policy committees shape the Association's legislative advocacy efforts. Meetings are held virtually and committees meet four times per year unless committee members desire to meet more frequently. Service on an ISACo Policy Committee is contingent upon the county being a member of ISACo or the applicant being a member of an affiliated association.

Policy Committee opportunities are as follows. Committees with links are already meeting, although there are openings on all policy committees.

Please click on the image below, complete the form and e-mail it to Legislative Advocacy and Research Manager Nekya Hall at

What We're Reading

How Hot will it be in Illinois this Summer? Here's what the Climate Prediction Center says (SJR)

State Highway Shootings Decline as Critics Sue Over ‘Dragnet Surveillance’ (Capitol News Illinois)

Heat Waves Impact Mental Health, Experts Urge Proactive Planning (WICS)

2024 NACo Annual Conference & Exposition

(July 12-15, 2024, Hillsborough County, Florida)

The National Association of Counties (NACo) Annual Conference is the premier gathering of elected and appointed officials from the nation’s 3,069 counties, parishes and boroughs. Conference content includes discussion of federal policies impacting counties, workshops lifting up county best practices, engaging general sessions, mobile tours across our host county, and more. NACo members also have the opportunity to influence the association’s direction and future during the Annual Business Meeting on the final day of the conference. 

Click on this link to register for the conference.

Upcoming NACo Webinars

NACo has announced the following upcoming webinar opportunities. ISACo is a proud partner with NACo and encourages counties to participate in NACo membership and activities.  

Vote like a Pro at the NACo Annual Business Meeting

(Wednesday, June 26, 2024, 2:00pm-3:00pm CST)

Primary voting delegates participating in the 2024 Annual Business Meeting during NACo’s Annual Conference should join NACo to learn how to cast your votes and what to expect during the business meeting.

Learn more about the credentials process by visiting or by emailing

Click on this link to register for the webinar. 

Promising Practices for Collaboration on State and Local Opioid Settlement Spending

(Wednesday, June 26, 2024, 2:30pm-3:30pm CST)

Between 2022 and 2040, counties, cities and states will receive over $50 billion in payments from the national opioid settlements. As these payments roll out, continued state-local coordination is key to ensuring that resources are effectively invested. On June 26, join NACo and the National Academy for State Health Policy for a webinar on promising practices for state-local coordination in opioid settlement spending. Featuring state and local leaders from North Carolina and Colorado, the webinar will explore strategies that counties and states can pursue to align efforts, reduce duplication and ensure that settlement funds are directed to the greatest areas of need.

Click on this link to register for the webinar. 

Introducing Digital ACFR: Financial Reporting Made Easy, a NACo EDGE Webinar

(Thursday, June 27, 2024, 12:00pm-1:00pm CST)

NACo has kept their ear to the ground in hopes of finding more ways to help local governments streamline and simplify every aspect of their budgeting process. NACo is pleased to announce that they have discovered that next solution!

Join NACo as they give an exclusive sneak peek of ClearGov’s upcoming tool, Digital ACFR. This groundbreaking solution is designed to simplify financial reporting for public agencies.

Learn from NACo's VP of Product Development on how you can:

- Simplify ACFR formatting
- Streamline collaboration for both your internal team and external auditors
- Satisfy ADA compliance
- Present your ACFR through an interactive website
- And much more!

Click on this link to register for the webinar. 

Building a Behavioral Health Continuum of Care: The Role of Rural Leaders and Behavioral Health Directors

(Thursday, June 27, 2024, 1:00pm-2:00pm CST)

Counties play a critical role in supporting community members living with behavioral health conditions or experiencing a behavioral health crisis. To build an effective and robust behavioral health system, counties need strong leadership to promote dialogue in the community and implement programs and policies that benefit all residents.

Click on this link to register for the webinar. 

Counties Leading Through Change, A NACo EDGE Webinar

(Monday, July 1, 2024, 12:00pm-1:00pm CST)

Local government leaders are working harder than ever to do more with less, balance competing priorities and navigate significant change, and doing so with challenges of the great resignation, the grey tsunami, quiet quitting, growing talent competition, decreasing employee engagement and overall retention. This interactive session will be presented by Dr. Tim Rahschulte, CEO of the Professional Development Academy and chief architect of the NACo High Performance Leadership Academy, who will detail current-state challenges of local government and will provide solutions that leaders can immediately apply in their daily roles to mitigate the negative implications of these challenges and navigate the increasing complexity of change.

Click on this link to register for the webinar. 

What to Know Before You Go to NACo’s Annual Conference

(Tuesday, July 2, 2024, 2:00pm-3:00pm CST)

Join NACo staff to learn ways to maximize your NACo Annual Conference experience and to answer your questions.

Click on this link to register for the webinar. 

Powerful Partnerships: How Coal Communities and Utility Companies are Working Together

(Thursday, July 25, 2024, 1:00pm-2:00pm CST)

Is your coal community facing a coal-fired power plant closure or transition? Join the BRECC National Network this July and learn how utility providers and local governments are working together to mitigate and respond to economic shocks. This BRECC National Network learning session will feature examples of county and utility partnerships that support energy transitions.

Click on this link to register for the webinar.  


Constellation Telecom

Constellation Telecom is comprised of business telecom leaders who bring over 100 years of combined experience and knowledge – and no ties to any telecom provider or agency.

Constellation Telecom is able to obtain vendor quotes from hundreds of vendors for Phone Service, Phone Systems, both on Premises and also Cloud based, as well for Internet circuits, Cabling and IT support. The company will offer special pricing to ISACo members that will result in cost savings for participating counties.

Additional information about Constellation Telecom is available via this link.

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 Member Services and Communications Manager Tiffani Homer at (217) 679-3368 or ISACo member counties are listed here. Thank you for your consideration.