Illinois Insights: An Update from Cozen O’Connor (6/26)

June 26, 2024


Pritzker signs bill creating new Illinois Department of Early Childhood

On Tuesday, Governor JB Pritzker joined elected officials, early childhood advocates, and education leaders to sign legislation (SB1) that creates the Department of Early Childhood.

The cabinet-level state agency was first proposed by Governor Pritzker, who has made early education a focal point of his second term, in October 2023.

The Department will focus exclusively on early childhood programs and services for young children – including the Preschool For All program, child care assistance programs, and day care licensing – to improve equity and accessibility for families and caregivers.

Services related to early childhood education and other areas currently housed in the State Board of Education (ISBE), Department of Human Services (DHS) and Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) would be combined under the new umbrella.

The program will become operational in July 2026.

Pritzker signs omnibus package

Governor JB Pritzker joined business leaders, labor leaders, and other public officials today to sign HB5005, an omnibus package that includes tax credit and incentive programs intended to help the film, technology, and clean energy sectors.


Pritzker promotes Illinois workforce, innovation during 2024 SelectUSA investment summit

“Gov. JB Pritzker is hitting the national stage for economic development. The Democrat spoke on a panel Monday morning during the SelectUSA Investment Summit in National Harbor, Maryland,” by WAND TV.

Illinois’ landmark credit card fee law prompting strong opposition

“Since Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed the ban into law, financial institutions that opposed the measure have ratcheted up their opposition and amplified their rhetoric, saying the move isn’t just bad for them but will also cause headaches for consumers,” by the Chicago Tribune.

Speaker Welch rebuffs lawsuit from would-be staff union as ‘forum shopping’

“In a new filing Monday, attorneys for Welch argued the Illinois Legislative Staff Association has no standing to sue over the speaker’s refusal to engage in collective bargaining with the would-be union’s members. Welch’s attorneys reiterated an argument the speaker has been making for nearly a year: Illinois law doesn’t currently allow legislative staffers to unionize,” by Capitol News Illinois.

Second Installment of 2023 Cook County Property Tax Bills Set to Arrive on Time

“Cook County property owners will be able to pay the second installment of their 2023 property taxes online starting July 2, as bills head to their mailboxes, officials said. For the first time in two years, Cook County officials have sent out both the first and second installments for an entire property tax year on time,” by WTTW.

Tollway faces temporary restraining order on major interchange construction

“Amid a legal fight over the Illinois tollway terminating a construction contract, a DuPage County judge has issued a temporary restraining order preventing the agency from hiring another firm,” by The Daily Herald.



Push to Find New Sources of Revenue Set to Seize Chicago City Hall Spotlight

“As the mayor ramps up work on his second budget proposal, a newly formed Chicago City Council subcommittee is set to meet at noon Wednesday to start examining the dozens of proposals to increase the amount of money officials have on hand to spend starting in 2025,” by WTTW.

Johnson announces dates, times for budget forums

“Three 2.5-hour sessions will be held at City Colleges locations, starting July 22 at Malcolm X College. A fourth roundtable, open only to ages 13 to 24, will be at the Harold Washington Library,” by the Chicago Sun-Times.

Chicago reaches deal with protest organizers ahead of DNC

“City officials this week reached a deal with protest organizers that will allow demonstrators to march along Michigan Avenue, adjacent to Grant Park, before the kickoff of the Democratic National Convention in August,” by the Chicago Tribune.

Zoning committee approves apartment development to replace century-old Wrigleyville residences

“The City Council zoning committee on Tuesday advanced a development proposal to replace three historic residences outside Wrigley Field with a 29-unit apartment building. But two other major projects — one development proposed next to the planned Bally’s Casino and a Sterling Bay development near the planned Lincoln Yards — were deferred, along with several other big housing project proposals,” by The Daily Line.

CTA Touts New Regional Daily Pass, Improved Ridership and Continues Calls for More Public Funding

“The Chicago Transit Authority board of directors on Tuesday approved a combined daily pass allowing seamless trips across CTA, Metra and Pace — the latest in an effort to better coordinate among the area’s transit agencies in hopes of drawing back riders,” by WTTW.

47 candidates file for Chicago school board elections

“The window for hopefuls to submit their minimum 1,000 signatures to get on the ballot closed Monday afternoon with more than two dozen final-day submissions wrapping up the week-long process that kicked off the elections,” by WBEZ.


Cozen Currents: Why This Rematch Isn’t a Rehash

While President Biden’s age has sparked worry among traditionally Democratic-leaning voters, it may help him make inroads with older voters, one of the most important voting blocs.

President Biden and former President Trump are set to face off in their first debate of the cycle on Thursday. While many won’t be able to look away, whether it will really have much of an effect on the race is a debate in itself.

President Biden and former President Trump are vying for the support of union members, who will be a key voting bloc in the critical Rust Belt.

The Cozen Currents can be read here.

Beltway Briefing, Migrant Crisis: National Issue, Local Impact

As droves of migrants arrive at the Southern Border, the consequences of the federal government’s inaction on immigration profoundly affect major cities like New York City and Chicago. Members of Public Strategies’ Federal, New York, and Chicago teams discuss the national perspective and the localized impact, emphasizing the need for comprehensive federal immigration reform and support to alleviate the burdens of the migrant crisis on urban areas.

Featuring Public Strategies’ Howard Schweitzer, Towner French (Federal), Katie Schwab (New York), and John Dunn (Chicago).

Listen to the Beltway Briefing here.


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