Illinois Insights: An Update from Cozen O’Connor (12/20)

December 20, 2023


Illinois to increase minimum wage January 1 

Illinois’ minimum wage is increasing January 1, 2024 from $13 to $14.

The minimum wage for tipped workers will rise to $8.40 per hour and youth workers (under 18) working fewer than 650 hours per calendar year will see their hourly wage increase to $12 per hour.

“Since day one as Governor, I’ve made it my mission to put Springfield back on the side of working families,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “With this new minimum wage increase, we are once again making Illinois a more affordable and equitable place to live for all of our residents.”

The full press release can be found here.


Limits off in 20th Senate Democratic primary as Toro, Guzman distancing themselves in fundraising race  

“A crowded Democratic primary in the 20th Senate District is emerging with Sen. Natalie Toro (D-Chicago) and opponent Graciela Guzman distancing themselves from their opponents in the fundraising race with the help of big financial backers. But new self-funding efforts by Dr. Dave Nayak lifted contribution limits in the race on Monday, setting the stage for an even more expensive race,” by The Daily Line.

Illinois Chamber of Commerce deepens its legislative team

“The Illinois Chamber of Commerce announced the addition of Keith Wheeler as senior legislative affairs advisor in a news release today, Dec. 19. He will join the chamber’s Government Affairs team effective Jan. 1, 2024,” by QCBJ.

Illinois’ population declined by nearly 33,000, new 2023 census figures show, even as the nation as a whole grew

“While the U.S. population returned to a pre-pandemic growth trajectory this year, Illinois was one of eight states to see its numbers decline, a new 2023 census report showed. Illinois lost 32,826 people between July 2022 and July 2023,” by the Chicago Tribune.

Local Democratic organizations happy with state party’s new candidate recruitment efforts

“The recruitment effort focused on finding candidates to run in local races where there otherwise wouldn’t be a Democrat on the ballot. Recruitment focused on races for judge, county board, state’s attorney and other local offices on the 2024 ballot. The House and Senate Democratic caucuses will continue to do their own recruitment,” by The Daily Line.



City provides update on death of migrant boy in Pilsen shelter, denying connection to other reported hospitalizations

“The city government continued to defend its actions Tuesday regarding the death of a 5-year-old migrant boy following a medical emergency at a temporary shelter at 2241 S. Halsted St. in Pilsen Sunday. Though other children and teens from the same shelter were reportedly hospitalized, according to the Chicago Fire Department, the city Tuesday denied the incidents were related to the boy’s death,” by The Daily Line.

City Council resolution calling for a cease-fire in Gaza advances

“The Committee on Health and Human Relations voted Monday to recommend the resolution to the full City Council in January — drawing a roar of applause,” by the Chicago Sun-Times.

Mayor Brandon Johnson’s anti-violence strategy takes ex-Mayor Lightfoot’s plans to a new level in 4 violent neighborhoods

“Mayor Brandon Johnson plans a range of resources, including another round of guaranteed basic income, targeted this time to four neighborhoods,” by the Chicago Sun-Times.

Chicago’s average weekly return-to-office numbers near 56% occupancy

“The most recent average percentage of Chicago workers who are back in the office has increased slightly to 55.9%. The city’s stats are ahead of the nationwide average by 4.8 percentage points,” by Crain’s Chicago Business.

Plan Commission to consider measure to add hotel use to Fulton Market apartment complex, get update on mixed-use development in Garfield Ridge

“The Chicago Plan Commission will hold its final meeting of the year Thursday and take up a short agenda that includes a proposed amendment to a Fulton Market planned development and a presentation on the next phase of a previously approved planned development in Garfield Ridge,” by The Daily Line.

Chicago and Cook County try bold experiments to combat economic inequity

“With a poverty rate of 16.9%, the city of Chicago under Mayor Brandon Johnson is addressing economic security in less direct-cash ways: by eliminating the subminimum wage for tipped workers, passing a new paid leave policy (though it faces amendments), pushing for a hike on the real estate transfer tax to fight homelessness and exploring a municipally owned grocery store,” by Crain’s Chicago Business.

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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