Illinois Insights: An Update from Cozen O’Connor (11/10)

November 10, 2023



Illinois Chamber of Commerce appoints new president and CEO

“The Illinois Chamber of Commerce has named Lou Sandoval, a business owner and consultant across a variety of industries, as its new president and CEO. Sandoval will start the role on Nov. 27,” by Crain’s Chicago Business.

Unfinished assignment: Lawmakers leave Springfield without final plan for Chicago elected school board

“Divisions over the city’s elected school board remain — including disagreement over how many members should be appointed versus elected next year. The issue will likely be kicked to January when legislators return to Springfield,” by the Chicago Sun-Times.

Lawmakers send Gov. J.B. Pritzker revised proposal to lift Illinois moratorium on new nuclear plants

“Illinois lawmakers are sending Gov. J.B. Pritzker a revised proposal to lift the state’s decades-old moratorium on the construction of new nuclear power plants that aims to address the issues the second-term Democrat had with a version he vetoed this summer,” by the Chicago Tribune.

Bill Boosting Chicago Police Officers’ Pensions Clears General Assembly

“The bill, authored by state Sen. Rob Martwick, D-Chicago, ensures that all retired Chicago police officers get a 3% annual cost-of-living increase, regardless of whether they were born before or after Jan. 1, 1966. The Illinois House voted 94-8 to approve the bill, and the vote in the Illinois Senate was unanimous,” by WTTW.

Bill affirming mental health referendums passes House, awaits governor’s signature

“A bill preserving the results of successful referendums last year creating community mental health boards in several suburban communities has passed the Illinois House and now awaits Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s signature,” by the Daily Herald.


City Council passes paid leave ordinance 

The Chicago City Council voted 36-12 on Thursday to double the city’s current paid leave mandate, granting workers five sick days and five paid time off days per year.

The final proposal (SO2023-0002980), despite being amended several times since Ald. Michael Rodriguez (22) first introduced it in July, is one of the most progressive paid leave policies of any big city in the country.

The proposal requires companies with 100 employees or more to pay out up to seven days of unused time to workers who leave their job. Companies with 51 to 100 employees will have a one-year phase-in to pay departing workers for unused time, while companies with 50 or fewer employees are exempt.

The ordinance takes effect on January 1.


Johnson taps new legislative liaison to City Council

“Johnson has tapped Sydney Holman, a lobbyist at Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies, to serve as his next head of intergovernmental affairs — an often behind-the-scenes but crucial post that guides the mayor’s agenda and manages relationships with the City Council and state legislators,” by Crain’s Chicago Business.

Biden migrant work permit clinic launches in Chicago

“The first of the White House-sponsored work authorization clinics in Chicago launched Thursday, giving 150 migrants a one-stop shop where attorneys helped fill out applications and federal workers began processing them on-site,” by the Chicago Sun-Times.

Johnson’s Spending Plan Set to Create Department of Reentry With $5M Budget

“Mayor Brandon Johnson’s 2024 spending plan earmarks $5 million to create a new department designed to help those returning to Chicago from jail or prison find jobs or other assistance as they work to rebuild their lives,” by WTTW.

With ‘Base Camps’ Weeks Away from Opening, Officials Scramble for Temporary Plan for Migrants

“It will be weeks before Chicago officials will be ready to open ‘winterized base camps’ to house some of the 3,000 migrants living at police stations across the city and at O’Hare International Airport, city officials said Thursday,” by WTTW.

Bob Fioretti announces intent to again run for Cook County state’s attorney

“Former Ald. Bob Fioretti, who has run for and lost several public offices since leaving the Chicago City Council, announced Wednesday his latest bid, trying again for Cook County state’s attorney. But this time he’s running as a Republican,” by the Chicago Tribune.


Cozen Currents: Misery Loves Company 

  • The election of House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) has set off a fight within the House Republican conference as members from different factions jockey to become the affable new speaker’s influential allies.
  • The Biden administration deepened its focus on regulating AI with the release of a comprehensive executive order last week and is asserting a leadership role in the global response to the emerging technology.
  • California Governor Gavin Newsom (D) continues his media blitz to establish a national profile as his presidential plans, if any, have subtly shifted from 2024 to 2028. In trying to set himself up as the next leader of the party, he acts as a revealing proxy for what Democrats care about and where they stand.

Read the Cozen Currents article here.

Nikki Haley: A 2024 GOP Alternative?

As the new speaker moves forward with an Israeli aid package, antisemitism is spreading across the globe. Meanwhile in the 2024 Republican presidential primary, Donald Trump’s façade begins to crumble under the weight of mounting indictments, positioning Nikki Haley as a formidable alternative to the former president. Featuring CPS’ Howard Schweitzer, Patrick Martin, and Towner French.

Listen to the full Beltway Briefing here.

If you have any questions regarding this update or if you’re interested in ways to engage on these issues, please contact one of our team members here.


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