Veto Session concluded on December 5, 2012 (a day early) and left a number of important legislative issues unresolved. PCG staff members expect to return to the Capitol for the “lame duck” session in early January to continue our work on several policy priorities. In the meantime, here’s an update for the bills on which we have been working:
HB 30—Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program
Creates a limited exception to Illinois’ criminal laws to permit the doctor-advised medical use of cannabis by patients with serious and usually chronic medical conditions. Was not called for a vote, but there were negotiations that we believe will result in the bill being called in January during “lame duck.” Final action deadline extended to January 8, 2013.
SB 1565—Raise the Minimum Wage
Calls for raising the current Illinois minimum wage of $8.25 an hour incrementally over three or four years until it reaches its historic value of approximately $10.50 an hour. Annual increases would be about 50 cents per year plus inflation every year (about 15 to 30 cents). Was not called during Veto Session. Final action deadline extended to January 8, 2013.
HB 5723—Expanding Sealing for People with Felony Records
Amends the Criminal Identification Act and allows a person to petition the court and the court to order the sealing of Class 2, 3, and 4 felony conviction records four years after termination of the person’s last sentence if the individual has had no further involvement with the criminal justice system. Was not called during Veto Session. The future of the bill is uncertain at this time.
HB 6240—Debt Re-Structuring
Authorizes the state to issue general obligation bonds with a low interest rate for sale to the public and the money generated by selling these will be used only to pay that State’s past due bills. It will not fund new programs. Bill assigned to the House Executive Committee and deadline for final action extended to January 8, 2013.
SB 957 Highway Safety: Driver’s Licenses for All Illinois Motorists
Provides a way for Illinois immigrant motorists without Social Security numbers to obey driver’s license laws by getting tested on their driving skills and on the rules of the road, and purchasing car insurance. Bill passed the Senate by the bi-partisan vote of 41-14-1. Moved to the House and assigned to Transportation: Vehicles and Safety Committee. Final action deadline extended to January 8, 2013.