The analysis, by the nonpartisan Civic Federation’s Institute for Fiscal Sustainability, contained severe criticism of HB 109. The emergency appropriations bill, pushed through the House earlier this spring session on a partisan roll call, was touted by its sponsors as a “lifeline” to stretched providers of human services. The bill was supposed to substitute for a full-year, constitutionally balanced budget. Analysts for the Civic Federation, however, discovered that the Democrats’ bill would provide only 27.1 cents on the dollar for the human-services funding shortfall based on FY16 spending numbers. 

The majority party’s “lifeline” plan has been proclaimed as providing rescue money to Illinois institutions of higher education. The Institute’s analysts, after running the numbers, stated that the plan would provide only 56.2 cents of the dollars previously allocated by higher education and not paid in FY16. House Republicans opposed the so-called “lifeline” plan as being both ludicrously inadequate to meet its proclaimed purposes and a distraction from the hard work of generating progress toward government reform and a constitutional balanced budget.

From the Jobs Center of Lake County: job search workshops and career events throughout Lake County in May.


5 Steps to Your Next Job
Monday, May 15 to Friday, May 19 10:00 am to 12:00 pm each day
New Location: College of Lake County, Grayslake, building 4

Attend the 5-day interactive workshop series. This series covers the entire job search process from researching careers to landing your next job. Attend all 5 days to earn a certificate! Register at 847.377.3439 or email elocke@lakecountyil.gov to reserve a seat!
State Representative Sheri Jesiel's (R-Winthrop Harbor) Lakefront Economic Development Group with Beach Park, Winthrop Harbor, Zion and Coastal Management held its first meeting since Westrec took over management of the North Point Marina.

Jesiel said it was a very productive meeting and the group is very optimistic about what the $2 million Westrec has already started to invest into the Marina will mean for future economic development prospects along the lakefront.
From Lake County: Caterpillar has selected Deerfield as home to its new corporate headquarters. Caterpillar initially plans to relocate approximately 100 employees to its new site immediately, but that number is expected to triple in coming years. The move adds high quality jobs and a new global brand to Lake County’s bustling economy. Caterpillar, a Dow Jones 30 company, joins 11 other Fortune 500 companies that call Lake County home.

Lake County Partners and Lake County join the Village of Deerfield in welcoming Caterpillar to the neighborhood and look forward to working together to ensure that the transition is smooth and successful. Lake County Partners is a 501(c)(3) economic development corporation that works to maintain economic vitality in Lake County by creating and retaining quality jobs, stimulating capital investment, and pursuing economic diversity. Read the full news release.
A new study, backed by the Illinois Policy Institute, suggests that the cost of workers’ compensation to Illinois taxpayers is at least $1 billion a year. The total includes at least $727 million/year attributable to local governments and school districts, and an estimated $255 million/year for the State of Illinois. The study was released on Wednesday, April 5.

Workers’ compensation costs are paid by taxpayers as the employers of the thousands of Illinois public sector personnel, including school and university personnel. Under existing law, most employers must cover their employees with workers’ compensation insurance to reflect the actuarial future costs of the employment-related health challenges they may face in the future while employed.
A visitor count carried out during the final six months of calendar year 2016 showed 12.9 million visitors setting foot in Chicago’s iconic park, making Millennium Park the most popular single site in the central region of the United States. The park centers around sculptor Anish Kapoor’s internationally recognized abstract stainless-steel sculpture “Cloud Gate.” Millennium Park topped the Midwest’s second-most-visited tourist attraction, Chicago’s Navy Pier.
The counts carried out by the American Community Survey include movements of former Illinoisans through calendar years 2015. In 2015, 34,220 former Illinois residents moved to the Hoosier State.

Indiana currently possesses features that increase its attractions relative to Illinois. Features of Indiana policy include a working state budget, a statewide property tax limitation law, a “triple-AAA” credit rating, and a job-friendly business climate. More Illinois residents are expected to move to Indiana as these policy factors continue to operate.    
In an executive order, Gov. Bruce Rauner took steps this week to trigger the elimination of the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency (IHPA). The Agency operates more than 50 historic and cultural-heritage sites throughout Illinois. Sites controlled by IHPA include the Hotel Florence, an architectural keystone of the Pullman National Monument in Chicago; Lincoln’s Tomb and Lincoln’s New Salem in Central Illinois; and the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Cahokia Mounds, east of St. Louis. IHPA was separated out from its former parent, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (then called the Department of Conservation) in 1985.

Under the terms of Rauner’s Executive Order, most of IHPA will be returned to what is now the Department of Natural Resources (IDNR). The consolidation of the two agencies is expected to generate significant administrative savings. A key entity within IHPA, the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, will be granted its own Board of Trustees and autonomy directly under the Office of the Governor.
Stay up to date on road construction projects throughout Lake County. The Lake County Department of Transportation offers detailed information and updates on all construction projects happening throughout the county, Click Here.
It is disappointing, but not surprising, that Democrats once again rammed another stopgap spending plan through the House – it’s precisely why Democrats have been unwilling to negotiate with House Republicans on a full, balanced budget.

We have said all along that it was the plan of the Speaker and the majority party to only pass stopgap spending plans and allow our state to simply limp along to get to the next election – and their most recent actions prove that.

Unfortunately, we’ve seen all of this before. Typically, right before a break or deadline, the majority party decides it’s best to play politics and passes a spending plan that never balances or fails to address the real issues of our state so that they can go home and pretend that they’ve done their job.
Last week, State Representative Sheri Jesiel (R-Winthrop Harbor) advanced legislation through the Illinois House of Representatives to improve protections for students. House Bill 3615 updates the law so students in Illinois schools will be protected from being confronted by an abuser employed by a school.

“When a student is abused, the fear of being confronted by their abuser can keep them from reporting the situation or worse, allow the abuse to continue,” said Jesiel. “House Bill 3615 removes that barrier and ensures no student will have to suffer further abuse or intimidation by being confronted by an abuser at school. I’m glad my colleagues in the House recognized the importance of this legislation by unanimously passing it, and I hope it receives the same level of support in the Senate.”
From the Lake County State's Attorney:
Lake County State's Attorney Mike Nerheim announced that the Lake County State's Attorney's Office, the Lake County Opioid Initiative, and Warren Township Youth & Family Services will be hosting a drug information forum on Thursday, April 6, 2017 from 6:30pm to 8:00pm at Woodland Middle School 7000 W. Washington Street in Gurnee, IL.

Joan Sheldon from the Robert Crown Centers for Health Education will be hosting a presentation focusing on the adolescent brain development, heroin and other opioid trends, effects of heroin and opioids on the brain, addiction as a brain disease, adolescent risk and protective factors, and how to prevent adolescent substance abuse including parents' role in discussing substance abuse prevention with their children. The Robert Crown Centers for Health Education's mission is to positively impact the physical and mental health of youth through innovative education programs in partnership with parents, schools and communities.