The following update was authored by Blaire Bryant and Valerie Brankovic and published by NACo on Friday, March 6, 2020.

This week, congressional legislators moved quickly to pass bipartisan legislation to combat the surging coronavirus epidemic in the United States in an aid package totaling $8.3 billion. On March 5, the U.S. Senate approved the bill by an 96-1 vote one day after U.S. House legislators voted to approve the measure by a margin of 415-2. President Trump signed the funding bill on Friday, March 6.

The emergency supplemental includes comprehensive resources to enhance the national response to coronavirus, as well as key provisions to support state and local efforts to address cases of the illness. As passed, the legislation specifically includes:

  • $2.2 billion in public health funding to support prevention, preparedness and response efforts, including a $1 billion set-aside for State and Local Preparedness Grants to support states, cities and tribes, half of which will be distributed within 30 days. Each state will receive no less than $4 million.

  • Approximately $3 billion in funding for research and development of coronavirus vaccines and diagnostic tools;

  • $100 million in supplemental appropriations for Community Health Centers (CHC) – a key priority for counties as health safety-net providers;

  • A provision that waives certain telehealth requirements during the coronavirus public health emergency to allow Medicare providers to administer telehealth services to elderly patients, who are at greater risk of contracting the illness; and

  • $20 million for the Small Business Administration (SBA) to assist businesses affected by the outbreak.

Congress’ and the White House’s swift response to the crisis follows NACo members’ approval of an interim policy resolution during the 2020 Legislative Conference that urged legislators to dedicate new resources to address the crisis. The resolution text can be viewed at this link.

NACo members received a special briefing during the conference from representatives from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on how counties can enhance local readiness to address the virus. CDC’s Chief Medical Examiner Mitch Wolfe indicated the CDC is working closely with health departments to assess local readiness for the virus, adding that counties and states are encouraged to review their pandemic preparedness plans.

The General Assembly was in session from Tuesday, March 3 through Thursday, March 5, 2020. Several bills of interest to counties were approved by House and Senate committees over these days. Bills approved by committees will next be considered on the floor of their chamber of origin or will receive amendments at a later date prior to receiving a floor vote.


HB 3934 (Representative Willis) - Amendment 1 Approved by the House State Government Administration Committee (10-1)

The bill was amended with language substantially similar to the bill as initially introduced. Provides that a cyber attack is a "disaster." Requires the Governor to delegate or assign authority to the Director of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency to manage, coordinate and direct all resources by orders issued at the time of a disaster. Effective immediately. ISACo Supports


SB 1385 (Senate President Harmon) - Amendment 4 Approved by Senate Executive Committee (16-0) to Remove Original Language

The bill as introduced would have amended the Law Enforcement Officer-Worn Body Camera Act. Provides that any recording disclosed under the Freedom of Information Act shall be redacted to remove identification of any person that appears on the recording and is not a subject of the encounter, directly involved in the encounter, and all law enforcement officer identifiers if the recordings are made available from any law enforcement or government agency to the media or public unless that law enforcement officer has been criminally charged relative to the recorded incident. Provides that if any law enforcement or government agency fails to follow the requirements of the Act, the agency is liable for a penalty of $100 per day to the affected individual. Provides that the individual and that individual's labor organization has the right to file suit against that law enforcement agency to require the agency to comply with the terms of the Act. ISACo No Position

SB 1385 was amended in the Senate Executive Committee to remove the above language entirely and will likely be amended at a later date with revised language or used for another purpose.

SB 2016 (Senate President Harmon) - Amendment 2 Approved by Senate Executive Committee (16-0) to Remove Original Language

The bill as introduced would have provided that, in addition to any other funding that may be provided to the Illinois Transportation Enhancement Program (ITEP) from federal, State, or other sources, the Department of Transportation shall set aside an amount equal to 2% of the total appropriation received by the Department from the Road Fund for the projects in the categories of pedestrian and bicycle facilities, streetscape projects, and the conversion of abandoned railroad corridors to trails. Provides that the funds shall be administered according to the requirements of the current Guidelines Manual published by the Department for ITEP. Provides that, for projects funded under the Section: (1) local matching funding shall be required according to a sliding scale based on community size, median income, and total property tax base, (2) Phase I Studies and Phase I Engineering Reports are not required to be completed before application is made, and (3) at least 25% of funding shall be directed towards projects in high-need communities. Provides that the Department shall adopt rules necessary to implement the Section. ISACo Supports

SB 2016 was amended in the Senate Executive Committee to remove the above language entirely and will likely be amended at a later date with revised language or used for another purpose.

SB 3315 (Senator Martinez) - Approved by Senate Executive Committee (13-3)

The bill amends the Counties Code. Changes definitions of "population" to be the total number of inhabitants according to last preceding federal decennial census (rather than number of inhabitants or number of persons). Amends the Illinois Municipal Code. Adds a definition of "population" in the general definition Section. ISACo No Position

SB 3333 (Senator Martwick) - Approved by Senate Human Services Committee (9-0)

The bill amends the Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Administrative Act. Provides that the Department of Human Services shall create and maintain an online database and resource page on its website. Provides that the database and resource page shall contain mental health resources specifically geared toward first responders with the goal of connecting those persons with mental health resources related to crisis services, wellness, trauma information, nutrition, stress reduction, anxiety, depression, violence prevention, suicide prevention, and substance use and of encouraging information sharing among families of first responders, first responder organizations, first responder professional organizations, and first responders. Effective immediately. ISACo No Position

An amendment was filed to SB 3333 that, if adopted, would make the requirements of the bill subject to appropriation.

  • Joe McCoy

Updated: Mar 2

The Illinois State Association of Counties (ISACo) will take positions on several bills posted to House and Senate committees during the week of March 2-6. These bills are listed below.

Posted bills will not necessarily be called during the week they are posted. Each legislator sponsoring a bill on which ISACo has a position receives a letter from ISACo indicating our position.

Counties wishing to register positions on any of these bills are encouraged to access the General Assembly Dashboard (via this link) and find the bills based upon the committee to which they were assigned. Clicking on the link to each bill below will identify the committee to which the bill is assigned.

Instructions on how to use the General Assembly Dashboard are available via this link.


HB 49 - Oppose

Amends the Criminal Identification Act. Provides that records of charges that result in an acquittal or dismissal with prejudice, except for minor traffic offenses, may be immediately expunged after the final disposition of the case. Provides that upon entry of judgment, the defendant shall be informed of this right and the proper procedures to follow to have records that are eligible be immediately expunged. Provides that the petition may be filed on behalf of the defendant by his or her attorney at the final disposition hearing, or by the defendant at any time. Provides that the State's Attorney may not object to an immediate expungement petition and the presiding trial judge shall enter an order granting or denying the petition during the hearing in which the petition is filed. Provides that no fees shall be charged by the circuit court clerk or the Department of State Police for processing petitions filed under this provision. Makes other changes.

HB 2297 (Oppose)

Amends the Cook County Forest Preserve District Act. Provides that 91 days after the effective date of the amendatory Act: (1) the forest preserve district board's authority to appoint and maintain a police force is terminated; and (2) the Cook County Sheriff's Department shall exercise primary jurisdiction over the territory within the forest preserve district.

HB 4080 - Oppose

Amends the Public Safety Employee Benefits Act. Provides that any full-time law enforcement, correctional or correctional probation officer, or firefighter that suffers a catastrophic injury or is killed in the line of duty, as well as their spouse or child, shall be offered by the employer of the law enforcement, correctional or correctional probation officer, or firefighter the choice of any health insurance plan available to currently employed full-time law enforcement, correctional or correctional probation officers, or firefighters.

HB 4598 - Support (Lake County Initiative)

Amends the Counties Code. Provides that, beginning on July 1, 2021, upon the expiration of each Public Defender's term of office in a county with under 1,000,000 population, the chairperson of the county board or the executive of a county board of commissioners shall, after receiving a recommendation or recommendations provided by an independent citizen's advisory council, appoint the Public Defender with the advice and consent of the county board. Provides for citizen advisory council membership and appointment requirements. Excludes appointments of the same Public Defender in adjoining counties. Makes conforming changes. Effective immediately.

HB 4704 (Oppose/Preemption of Authority)

Creates the Right to Garden Act. Allows the State or a unit of local government to regulate gardens on residential property unless the statute or regulation has the practical effect of precluding gardens on residential property entirely. Defines the terms "garden" and "residential property". Limits home rule powers. Effective immediately.


SB 2519 (Oppose)

Amends the Counties Code. Provides that if a coroner fails to disqualify himself or herself from acting at an investigation or inquest due to conflicts of interest, an interested party may file a petition to disqualify the coroner for cause with the circuit court of the county for which the coroner has jurisdiction. Provides that the court, after hearing, may disqualify the coroner. Provides that a circuit court may, upon the motion of any interested party for good cause shown, temporarily appoint a coroner who has a mutual aid agreement with the coroner having jurisdiction to perform the duties of the coroner having jurisdiction and the judge shall make the appointment within 24 hours after the filing of the motion. Provides that the temporarily appointed coroner shall have jurisdiction only over the matters provided in the court's order and the appointment shall terminate upon completion of the final certification of death.

SB 2524 (Support)

Amends the Property Tax Code. Provides that, in a county under township organization with less than 3,000,000 inhabitants and an appointed board of review, the county board may, by resolution, require that members of the board of review have certain professional assessment designations. Provides that, if the county board requires those designations, then provisions of the Code concerning the political makeup of the board of review do not apply to that county. Effective immediately.

SB 3125 (Support)

Amends the Department of Transportation Law of the Civil Administrative Code of Illinois. Provides that supplemental funding for the Illinois Transportation Enhancement Program shall be set aside on a yearly basis. Provides that local matching funding shall be required according to a sliding scale based on community size, median income, and percentage of population living below the federal poverty line (rather than community site, median income, and total property tax base). Provides that at least 25% of funding shall be directed towards projects in high-need communities, based on community median income and percentage of population living below the federal poverty line (rather than community median income and total property tax base).

SB 3412 (Support)

Amends the Mosquito Abatement District Act. Provides that a county board or board of county commissioners may by ordinance transfer the duties of all mosquito abatement districts in the county to the county and dissolve those districts. Includes provisions relating to submittal of the proposition of dissolution to the voters by referendum and transfer of personnel, property, tax levy powers, and funds of districts to the county. Amends the Counties Code making conforming changes.


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                Springfield, IL 62701
Phone:     (217) 679-3368


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