Illinois Insights: An Update from Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies (12/23)

December 23, 2022

Note: There will be no Illinois Insights editions next week. Illinois Insights will resume Wednesday, January 4th, 2023. 


Mayor Lightfoot, Arwady urge masking in public as COVID-19 cases rise: “Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot urged residents to get vaccinated and boosted as the Christmas holiday approaches and noted that the city will issue a mask advisory if COVID-19 cases continue rising. Chicago officials are suggesting people take COVID-19 tests before holiday gatherings and wear masks in crowded settings amid yet another upswing in cases,” the Chicago Tribune.


Pritzker signs Reimagining Electric Vehicles Act Amendment

Gov. JB Pritzker on Wednesday signed an amendment to the Reimagining Electric Vehicle (REV) in Illinois Act into law. Along with the Climate and Equitable Jobs Act, the REV Illinois Act will promote Illinois’ fight against climate change by further incentivizing electric vehicle (EV) production across the state.

The additional incentives offered through the REV Illinois Act (20 ILCS 686/) will (1) support Illinois automakers in EV manufacturing and auto battery production and in their efforts to transform existing plants into EV plants, (2) bolster the EV ecosystem by giving manufacturers the ability to increase production on EV parts, and (3) provide flexibility for automakers to determine which incentives are most beneficial to them as the market evolves.

Tax credits will be offered to Illinois automakers that retain employees through their transition to EV production for up to 75% of their state level income tax and 100% of their income tax when operating in an “Underserved or Energy Transition Area.”

The REV Illinois Act also includes tax credits for income tax withholding, training costs, tax exemptions, and investment credits, and allows local jurisdictions to reduce property taxes for EV projects.


Gov. Pritzker Signs Bill Divesting State Funds from Russian Investments in Solidarity with Ukraine: “On Wednesday, Governor Pritzker signed HB1293 into law, divesting Illinois state pension funds from Russian and Belarusian banks and companies effective immediately. This action was taken in response to the unjustified invasion of Ukraine by Russia earlier this year and in support of the Ukrainian people in their continued resistance against Russian aggression,” from the Office of Gov. JB Pritzker.

Pritzker Administration Announces Timeline for Next Cannabis Dispensary License Lottery: “Following extensive conversations with lawmakers and other stakeholders, the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) has announced the timeline for the next round of cannabis dispensary licenses. Applications for the lottery will be accepted starting in January,” from the Office of Gov. JB Pritzker.

Welch concludes historic two years as speaker as he gears up for record-breaking caucus: “Welch was first elected to the House in 2012 and was elected speaker by House Democrats in January 2021 as Democrats searched for a new leader after 19 members abandoned former House Speaker Mike Madigan. Over the next two years, Welch promised a ‘new day’ in Illinois and built a caucus that has given members more flexibility to push their ideas,” by The Daily Line.



Green, Wilson campaign supporters withdraw petition challenges against each other just one day after sparring to get each other kicked off the ballot: “In a complete reversal from what each of their campaigns were arguing Tuesday, mayoral candidates Ja’Mal Green and Willie Wilson and their supporters on Wednesday withdrew challenges to each other’s petitions to get on the Feb. 28 ballot. With the motions to withdraw submitted, Green and Wilson have secured their spots on next year’s ballot,” by The Daily Line.

What the tax returns of Chicago mayoral candidates show about their money — and which contender refused to release them: “Each major candidate for Chicago mayor in the Feb. 28 election — with one notable exception — released at least part of their tax returns from the past four years, providing these and other glimpses into their financial lives among hundreds of pages of IRS filings,” by the Chicago Tribune.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot turns to CEOs for support in tough re-election bid: “Lightfoot has been calling chief executive officers and other top leaders of several of the city’s largest businesses in recent months, people familiar with the conversations said. In each case, the people said, the mayor and her team were seeking support in the Feb. 28 election, which many took to mean donating to her campaign. The people asked for anonymity to discuss the private conversations,” by Crain’s Chicago Business.

Challenges to Logalbo’s petitions sustained as mayoral candidate pool shrinks to 10: “The Chicago Electoral Board on Thursday adopted the recommendation that mayoral candidate Johnny Logalbo’s nominating petitions are not ‘legally valid’ for the reasons detailed in the two separate cases that were filed challenging his petitions,” by The Daily Line.


‘Tis the Season: Beltway Briefing Holiday Edition

Public Strategies’ Howard Schweitzer, Mark Alderman, Patrick Martin, and Kaitlyn Martin wrap up this year’s Beltway Briefing podcast series as they reflect on key political and legislative battles of 2022 and – as the 118th United States Congress gets ready to convene, look ahead to events in Washington and beyond in 2023.

Listen to the full Beltway Briefing here.


Senate passes $1.7 trillion spending bill to fund federal agencies and send aid to Ukraine: “The Senate passed a massive $1.7 trillion spending bill Thursday that finances federal agencies through September and provides another large round of aid to Ukraine one day after Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s dramatic address to a joint meeting of Congress,” by the Chicago Tribune.


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