This week's Illinois State Association of Counties (ISACo) News and Views e-newsletter conveys remaining spring legislative session deadlines, reports on actions taken last week concerning legislation of interest to counties, links to Governor Pritzker's executive order lifting mask requirements in most indoor settings as well as a new Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation, announces Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) planning and research grants, includes information about the advancement of legislation initiated by the Illinois Association of County Clerks and Recorders (IACCR), announces that Dr. Ngozi Ezike will be stepping down as Director of the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), includes a call from the Governor for state pension systems to divest from Russian companies, links to early bird registration for the National Association of Counties (NACo) Annual Conference in July, shares an upcoming NACo webinar opportunity, spotlights ISACo corporate partner Wight & Company and invites counties to join ISACo.
Five Weeks Remain for Spring Legislative Session
The General Assembly is scheduled to adjourn for the spring on April 8, 2022. Key remaining deadlines are as follows:
- March 25 - Committee deadline for bills in opposite Chamber
- April 1 - Third Reading deadline for bills in opposite Chamber
- April 8 - Adjournment
Both the House and Senate are in session this week.
Legislation Approved by the House Last Week
The following ISACo-tracked bills passed out of the House during the week of February 28-March 4 and will next be considered by the Senate. Please contact us at email@example.com if your county would like to offer input on any ISACo-tracked bills.
HB 4093 - EPA - Environmental Justice (Under Review)
HB 4305 - Juvenile Court & Criminal Code - Neglected Minor (No Position)
HB 4348 - Law Enforcement Camera Grant (No Position)
HB 4362 - IDOR - Publication (Support)
HB 4392 - Criminal ID - Expungement - Drug Test (No Position)
HB 4393 - Local Government - Best Value Bidding (Support)
HB 4489 - GATA - Applicability (Support)
HB 4604 - Occupational Safety - Various (No Position)
HB 4645 - Equity In Health Care Act (No Position)
HB 4674 - Nursing Homes - Inspections (No Position)
HB 4772 - County Design - Build Auth Act (Support)
HB 4773 - Juvenile Court - Medical Records (No Position)
HB 4818 - PFAS - Incineration Ban (No Position)
HB 4845 - Counties Code - Recorder Stamp (Support)
HB 4931 - Emergency Medical Dispatchers (Oppose)
HB 4988 - EPA - Public Water Supplies (No Position)
HB 5018 - Cook City Housing Trust Fund (Support)
HB 5041 - Juv Court - Detention Center Hiring (No Position)
HB 5061 - Counties Code - Diversity Goals (Support - ISACo Initiative)
HB 5061 will be amended in the Senate.
HB 5165 - Cybersecurity - Information Tech (Support)
HB 5170 - Environmental Response Project (No Position)
HB 5273 - Department of Juvenile Justice Ombudsman (No Position)
HB 5412 - Wage Payment & Collection (No Position)
HB 5502 - 911 Telephone System - Various (No Position)
HB 5532 - Property Tax - Land Bank Exemption (Support)
Legislation Approved by Committees Last Week
The following ISACo-tracked bill passed out of a House Committee last week (February 28-March 5). The bill may be considered by the full House.
HB 4414 - Expressway Camera Act - Camera Installation (No Position)
Amendments Filed Last Week
Several amendments were filed during the week of February 28-March 4 that would impact or otherwise be of interest to county governments. A list of these amendments with summaries and ISACo positions is available via this link. ISACo will continue to review introduced amendments and take positions as necessary. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if your county has a question or would like to offer input regarding an ISACo position on a bill or amendment. Your comments and questions are always welcome.
Governor Pritzker Issues Updated Executive Order with New Mask Guidelines
On February 28, 2022, Governor Pritzker released an updated Executive Order (EO 2022-6) lifting the mask requirement in most indoor settings. In accordance with Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidance, the executive order also lifts the mask requirement in K-12 schools and daycares. School districts and private businesses can continue to require masks at their discretion.
The press release is available via this link.
Disaster Declaration Extended
On March 4, 2022, Governor JB Pritzker signed a new Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation that extends the state's disaster declaration through April 2, 2022. The Governor also issued Executive Order (EO) 2022-7. This EO re-issues several previous EOs.
Per P.A. 101-0640 (available via this link), remote meetings remain a permissible option for local governments as long as certain criteria are met. Additional information about this authority is available via this link.
IDOT Planning and Research Grants
On March 3, 2022, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) announced that $10 million is available to distribute as grants for select projects and activities that help advance the state’s long-range transportation and planning goals. The deadline to apply is March 30, 2022.
Awards will be chosen based on the ability to study or implement a goal, strategy or objective of IDOT’s Long-Range Transportation Plan or one of the agency’s multimodal plans, such as the transit, rail, bike, freight and highway safety plans. Eligible activities include planning studies, data collection and analysis, research and program development, performance management and outreach efforts.
Applicants can include local and state agencies, metropolitan planning organizations, regional planning commissions and nonprofit entities with public sponsors. To receive the grants, successful applicants must agree to provide a funding match of 20%. Proposals that benefit disadvantaged or economically distressed communities will be given priority consideration and are eligible for full funding.
To learn more and apply, visit https://idot.click/lrtp.
Click on this link to view the full press release
Legislation Approved to Provide Clarity with Use of County Recorders' Seal as Signature
Legislation initiated by the Illinois Association of County Clerks and Recorders (IACCR) to simplify the process for use of a county recorder’s official seal passed the Illinois Senate on February 23, 2022. SB 3187 (Sen. Holmes, D-Aurora) is intended to streamline the recording process to establish a stamped or electronic version of the county seal that satisfies the signature requirement for record instruments.
A companion bill, HB 4845 (Rep. Willis, D-Addison), was approved by the Illinois House last week. ISACo supports both bills.
The full news story about SB 3187 is available via this link.
Dr. Ezike Stepping Down From Leading IDPH
Illinois’ top public health official, Dr. Ngozi Ezike, will leave the Pritzker administration days after the second anniversary of the coronavirus being declared a pandemic. Dr. Ezike joined the administration as director of the Illinois Department of Public Health early in 2019 and her last day will be March 14, 2022. Dr. Amaal Tokars, who is currently the assistant director of IDPH, will serve as interim director while a nationwide search is conducted for a new director. Dr. Tokars has prior service as Executive Director of the Kendall County Health Department.
The full news story is available via this link.
Governor Pritzker Calls on State Pension Funds to Explore Divesting from Russian Companies
Governor Pritzker asked the state’s five pension systems to consider divesting from Russian companies. In making the request, the Governor wrote “With the continued invasion by Russia of the sovereign nation of Ukraine, the State of Illinois stands with the people of Ukraine and nations around the world supporting peace in the country. As such, I am writing to request that your respective boards take all steps within your existing authority to explore the potential of divesting state pension assets from Russian-based companies and Russian assets and the feasibility of doing so.”
Registration Open for NACo Annual Conference
The National Association of Counties (NACo) opened early bird registration for its Annual Conference being held from July 21-24 in Adams County, Colorado. Come join ISACo in Adams County! Registration is available via this link.
Upcoming NACo Webinar
NACo has announced the following upcoming webinar opportunity. ISACo is a proud partner with NACo and encourages counties to participate in NACo membership and activities.
Someone to Respond to a Behavioral Health Emergency: Mobile Crisis Teams
(Wednesday, March 9, 2022, 12:00-1:00pm CST)
Counties and their partners play an important role in deploying mobile response units to stabilize, evaluate and support community members experiencing a behavioral health emergency. This face-to-face, community-based approach triages and assesses a person’s needs while developing a plan to address the underlying drivers of the emergency. Some counties utilize teams pairing a health professional with a Crisis Intervention Team-trained police officer. Other counties have implemented a civilian-only team composed of health care specialists, social workers, and peer supports. Many counties also employ both. This webinar provides an overview of the importance of mobile response units and insights from counties implementing innovative practices.
Click on this link to register for this event.
Corporate Sponsor Spotlight
This week's corporate partner spotlight highlights ISACo's partnership with Wight & Company.
For more than 80 years, Wight & Company has helped clients create exceptional, enduring buildings and spaces that enrich people's lives. Wight also specializes in providing professional services for transportation and infrastructure projects for counties, municipalities, state agencies, and private landowners.
More information about the services by Wight & Company is available via this link.
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.