Illinois State Associations of Counties (2023)

This week's Illinois State Association of Counties (ISACo) News and Views e-newsletter shares a list of legislation approved by committees last week of relevance to counties, links to a document that includes amendments filed last week of interest to counties, provides an update about the status of COVID-19 emergency rules pertaining to school mask requirements, announces the appointment of a new Legislative Inspector General for the General Assembly, references a Governing Magazine article about top issues confronting county officials, reports on ISACo Vice President Matthew Prochaska's participation in a press conference advocating for a partial restoration of state shared revenues for local governments, announces several upcoming National Association of Counties (NACo) webinar opportunities, spotlights ISACo corporate partner AT&T and invites counties to join ISACo.

Legislation Approved by Committees Last Week

The Illinois General Assembly convened in person last week. This was the first time both chambers have been in session at the same time since the beginning of January.

The following ISACo-tracked bills passed out of House and Senate Committees during the week of February 14-18. Bills approved by committees are next considered by the full House or Senate. Please contact us at info@isacoil.org if your county would like to offer input on any of these bills.

Both the House and Senate are in session this week. February 25 is the deadline to move Senate bills out ofthe Senate. The deadline for moving House bills out of the House is March 4.

HB 2767 - EPA - Environmental Justice (No Position)

HB 4305 - Juvenile Court - Neglected Minors (No Position)

HB 4603 - COVID-19 Test Site - Licensing (No Position)

HB 4646 - IMRF Employee Trustees (No Position)

HB 4671 - Juvenile Court - Commitment Juvenile Justice (No Position)

HB 4674 - Nursing Homes - Inspections (No Position)

HB 4764 - Vehicle Code - Local Government Delivery Trucks(Oppose)

HB 4773 - Juvenile Court - Medical Records(No Position)

HB 4818 - PFAS - Incineration Ban(No Position)

HB 4988 - EPA - Public Water Supplies(No Position)

HB 5061 - Counties Code - Diversity Goals (Support - ISACo Initiative)

HB 5502 - 9-1-1 Telephone System - Various(No Position)

HB 5568 - COVID-19 Test Site Standards(No Position)

SB 2912 - Superintendent of Public Works(Support)

SB 3460 - Local Officials - Administrative Leave (No Position)

Amendments Filed Last Week

Several amendments were filed during the week of February 14-18 that would impact or otherwise be of interest to county governments. A list of these amendments with summaries and ISACo positions is available via this link.ISACo will continue to review introduced amendments and take positions as necessary. Please contact us at info@isacoil.org if your county has a question or would like to offer input regarding an ISACo position on a bill or amendment. Your comments and questions are always welcome.

COVID-19 Emergency Rules Update

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) emergency rules governing COVID mitigations in schools expired on Sunday, February 13. By law, emergency rules areeffective for only 150 days. On February 14, IDPH re-issued emergency rules requiring schools to continue to implement COVID-19 protocols regarding masking, testing and exclusion.

On February 15,the bipartisan Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR) voted 9-0to reject the latest IDPH emergency rule, thus prohibiting it from taking effect. Legislators on the Commission cited ongoing litigation as the reason for their reluctance to extend the rule at this time.

As a reminder, a Sangamon County Judge issued a temporary restraining order (TRO) on February 4 prohibiting the continuation of mandatory school mask mandates. The Fourth District Appellate Court affirmed the TRO on February 17. Governor Pritzker has since requested that the Illinois Supreme Court review the case on an expedited basis.

ISACo will provide updates concerning the litigation and emergency rule as events unfold.

Legislative Inspector General Appointed

The Honorable Judge Michael P. McCuskey was appointed last week to serve as Legislative Inspector General. Republicans in both chambers objected to the manner by which Mr. McCuskey was appointed, which circumvented the statutorily-required search committee vetting and recommendation process.

The bipartisan Legislative Ethics Commission (LEC) is tasked with recommending a candidate to serve as the Legislative Inspector General. The LEC had not reached a consensus on a candidate and Democrat leaders contended the office is too important to leave vacant. Consequently, Mr. McCuskey’s appointment was put forward by Democrats and approved along partisan lines.

Governing MagazineArticle Covers Top Issues Confronting County Officials

On February 16, Governing Magazine published an article about the top issues facing county officials. The article is presented in an interview format with county leaders who attended the recent NACo Legislative Conference in Washington, D.C. held from February 12-16. ISACo Board Member and NACo 1st Vice President Denise Winfrey (Will County Board) is among the county leaders interviewed for the article.

ISACo Vice President Prochaska Participates in LGDF Press Conference

On Wednesday, February 16, ISACo Vice President Matthew Prochaska participated in a press conference with municipal officials advocating for a restoration to the full local share of state income tax revenue distributed through the Local Government Distributive Fund (LGDF).

Vice President Prochaska is the Kendall County Circuit Clerk and also chairs NACo's critical Membership Committee.

ISACo seeks to influence public policy by participating in coalitions with strategic partners when possible.To that end, ISACo is partnering with several municipal associations to urge the General Assembly and Governor to increase the county and municipal share of the state income tax from 6.06% to 8%.

The Restore LGDF Coalition membership is viewable below. The Coalition has secured a significant number of bill sponsors for HB 4169 and SB 3010. There are currently 60 co-sponsors for HB 4169 and 35 co-sponsors for SB 3010. These numbers demonstrate a sufficient number of votes are present to pass the legislation partlyrestoring LGDF revenue toward the percentage received prior to areduction in 2011.We need to continue to add sponsors and persuade House and Senateleadership to call one or both bills for a vote.

Illinois State Associations of Counties (1)

ISACo requests that county officials click on the links to each bill and urge their state legislators to sign on as co-sponsors if their names are not already listed.

Mediaoutlets havepublished stories following thepressconference, including this February 18 editorial from the Daily Herald.

ISACo's Policy Brief about LGDF isavailable via this link.

Upcoming NACo Webinars

NACo has announced the following upcoming webinar opportunities. ISACo is a proud partner with NACo and encourages counties to participate in NACo membership and activities.

Investing ARPA Funds in Behavioral Health Crisis Response

(Tuesday, February 22, 2022, 2:00-3:00pm CST)

With the recent infusion of resources from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), counties have a unique opportunity to invest funds into behavioral health crisis response systems to strengthen their effectiveness, equity and accessibility. Many are leveraging ARPA State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds to expand or develop new programs and practices, such as crisis hotlines, mobile crisis teams and crisis stabilization units. Effective and high-quality crisis response plays a key role in providing services to people with a mental health condition and/or substance use disorder and preventing future crises. This webinar will feature counties that have allocated ARPA funds for this priority and the lessons they’ve learned so far.

Click on this link to register for this event.

A Post-Pandemic Legacy: How Can We Build a Justice System That Works for Everyone?

(Wednesday, February 23, 2022, 1:00-2:00pm CST)

Counties have learned valuable lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic — lessons that can inform long-term improvements to justice services. In this webinar, you will hear from elected county officials about how to use ARPA funds to leave a legacy well beyond the pandemic.

Discussion topics will include:

  • Public confidence in a healthy county ecosystem
    A poorly functioning justice system erodes trust in public institutions. Learn how equitable access to housing, physical and mental healthcare, employment, and education all depend on productive justice that is open to all.
  • A paradigm shift: The court as a service, not a building
    A citizen’s experience of courts does not fully reflect the digital reality that we live in today. We explore which technologies can reduce backlogs and ensure everyone has their day in court.
  • Smoother interagency working practices
    Siloed thinking and systems hamper effective justice. Hear how agencies can work better together without ripping out existing processes or technologies, resulting in fewer delays, faster justice and lower costs for counties.
  • Targeted, timely action for long-term results
    Rather than embarking on complex, multi-year projects, counties can direct their ARPA funding towards initiatives that deliver near-immediate results. These initiatives reduce case backlogs and the consequent pressure on prosecutors, courts, and jails and help shift staff from low to high-value work.

Panelists:

  • Judge Samuel A. Thumma- Arizona Court of Appeals
  • Commissioner Tamara Pogue- Summit County, Colorado
  • Karen Gorham- Superior Court Administrator, New Hampshire Judicial Branch
  • Selen Usten- Director, Enterprise Government Proposition, Thomson Reuters

Click on this link to register for this event.

Prenatal-Three Suburban Peer Learning Network: Supporting Home-based Child Care Providers

(Thursday, February 24, 2022, 1:00-2:00pm CST)

More than 7 million children, including 30 percent of infants and toddlers, receive child care in a home-based setting. Home-based child care (HBCC) plays an important role in the mixed delivery system by offering parents care options that have smaller class sizes, are culturally diverse, and may be closer to home or more affordable. Join this interactive discussion featuring Home Grown and county leaders to learn how your county can improve the quality of and access to home-based child care and better support these providers and their unique needs.

Click on this link to register for this event.

Prenatal-Three Rural Peer Learning Network: Supporting Home-based Child Care Providers

(Friday, February 25, 2022, 1:00-2:00pm CST)

More than 7 million children, including 30 percent of infants and toddlers, receive child care in a home-based setting. Home-based child care (HBCC) plays an important role in the mixed delivery system by offering parents care options that have smaller class sizes, are culturally diverse, and may be closer to home or more affordable. Join this interactive discussion featuring Home Grown and county leaders to learn how your county can improve the quality of and access to home-based child care and better support these providers and their unique needs.

Click on this link to register for this event.

Corporate Sponsor Spotlight

Illinois State Associations of Counties (2)

This week's corporate partner spotlight highlights ISACo's partnership with AT&T.

AT&T Inc. is a modern media company whose mission is to inspire human progress through the power of communication and entertainment.

The company brings together premium video content, a large base of direct-to-consumer relationships, high-speed networks optimized for video and advertising technology to lead the next revolution in technology, media and telecommunications.

More information about the services provided by AT&T is available via this link.

Click on this link to learn more about the benefits and opportunities available through ISACo's Corporate Partner Program.

Become an ISACo Member!

Is your county a member of ISACo? If not, why not?

ISACo is a statewide association whose mission is to empower county officials to provide excellent service to their residents.

ISACo member counties are comprised of forward-thinking public servants who recognize that the challenges confronting county governments require new and innovative ideas, collaborative solutions and collective advocacy at the state and federal levels of government.

Members of the association will benefit from education and training opportunities, peer-to-peer networking, shared resources and robust representation before policymakers at various levels of government. ISACo creates and connects county officials to these opportunities and successfully equips them to make counties ideal places to live, work and play.

If your county is interested in discussing membership in ISACo, please contact Executive Director Joe McCoy at (217) 679-3368 or jmccoy@isacoil.org. ISACo member counties are listed here. Thank you for your consideration.

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