Illinois Insights: An Update from Cozen O’Connor (5/13)

May 13, 2024


State Rep. Walker appointed to vacant Illinois Senate seat

Former state Rep. Mark Walker will replace Ann Gillespie as the state senator for the Northwest suburbs’ 27th District.

Gillespie stepped down last month after she was appointed by the governor to lead the Department of Insurance.

“I’m honored to become the new Senator for the 27th District,” Walker said. “Over my time serving the 53rd District in the House, I’ve represented most of the people and communities of the 27th District. It’s great to be representing them again and I’m excited to continue advocating for our communities in Springfield.”

The 27th Senate District contains most or parts of Arlington Heights, Buffalo Grove, Des Plaines, Mount Prospect, Palatine, Prospect Heights, Rolling Meadows, and Schaumburg.



Labor-Backed Bill Banning ‘Captive Audience’ Meetings Awaits House Action

“With two weeks left before the General Assembly’s spring session is set to adjourn, negotiations continue on a labor union-backed initiative that would allow Illinoisans to skip religious and political work meetings without reprimand. Dubbed the ‘Worker Freedom of Speech Act,’ Senate Bill 3649 advanced out of the Senate on May 2 with only Democratic support,” by WTTW.

State of Illinois Releases COVID-19 After-Action Report & Playbook as Guide for Future Public Health Emergencies

“On the eve of the anniversary marking the end of the Public Health Emergency (PHE) declarations put in place at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the State of Illinois released a playbook detailing measures the state should take to prepare for future public health emergencies as well as recommendations for future administrations that may have to navigate public health crises,” from the Office of Gov. JB Pritzker.

Sportsbooks ask lawmakers to oppose tax increase; New hemp regulation bill could move forward  

“Sportsbooks from around Illinois wrote a letter to state lawmakers with concerns about Gov. JB Pritzker’s proposed tax hike on sportsbooks. A new amendment to regulate hemp was filed. And Illinois State Police arrested a person involved in making bomb threats at the State Capitol,” by The Daily Line.

IDOC details plans to shutter Stateville as soon as September; Union ‘strongly opposed’

“IDOC is pushing an aggressive timeline to complete the entire project within three to five years, but in addition to concerns that IDOC is underestimating how long the project will take, IDOC employees and local officials are worried about the impacts of IDOC’s proposal to eliminate the Logan prison entirely,” by The Daily Line.



Council public safety chair wants details of Democratic convention transportation plan: ‘We’re getting a late start’

“Public Safety Committee Chair Brian Hopkins (2nd) plans to hold City Council hearings to find out how many CTA buses will be shuttling delegates to and from the United Center, whether dedicated bus lanes will be used and whether a transit agency that has struggled to find enough drivers to meet its daily schedule will be able to recruit enough employees without ‘adjusting service,’” by the Chicago Sun-Times.

New Arrivals Mission Provides National Model for Compassionate Asylum Seeker Resettlement at the Municipal Level

“After one year at the helm of the New Arrivals Mission, Mayor Brandon Johnson has established a national model for compassionate resettlement of asylum seekers through a combination of intergovernmental collaboration, cost-saving measures, creative partnerships with the faith and philanthropic communities, and wrap-around services,” from the Office of Mayor Brandon Johnson.

Finance committee to vote on bill relief for water line leaks, $1.75M legal settlement in Irene Chavez police custody death, bonds for Humboldt Park affordable housing project

“The City Council Committee on Finance will meet Monday and consider a measure to create a pilot program to help customers that have experienced spiking water and sewer bills after leaks. The finance committee will also consider a legal settlement related to a woman’s death in police custody, the issuance of housing bonds to help build a new affordable development in Humboldt Park and multiple allocations of tax increment financing (TIF) dollars,” by The Daily Line.


Beltway Briefing: “It’s All About Clicks & Eyeballs” 

As Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene attempted to oust Speaker Mike Johnson through a motion to vacate, Democrats calculated that the public’s frustration with Washington’s dysfunction could harm their electoral prospects. Meanwhile, at the forefront of the campaign trail, the competition narrows between Biden, Trump, and the couch. From the hush-money trial to college campus Israel-Hamas protests to concerns about the economy and immigration, voters who harbor discontent toward both candidates, often termed ‘double-haters,’ face a pivotal choice. Featuring Public Strategies’ Howard Schweitzer and Kyle Anderson.

Listen to the 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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