A communication for State Senator Karen McConnaughay:
Senator McConnaughay’s Legislative Update: January 11, 2016
We are now in our seventh month without a state budget, which is the longest time Illinois has gone without a complete and constitutional, twelve month budget since at least 1970. It is certainly disappointing, but there is hope that reform is possible in 2016. I will continue to work tirelessly this year to restore Illinois’ once vibrant economy by supporting measures that boost job growth and opportunities for hardworking Illinoisans.
Other than the budget, a top priority I have in 2016 is to help end human trafficking in Illinois. Throughout the month of January, which has been deemed Human Trafficking Awareness Month, I will be working with my colleagues to push awareness initiatives and policies that work to combat human trafficking in Illinois.
I hope you will join me this month in wearing the color blue and using the hashtag #ILAgainstHumanTrafficking on social media to show your support for our movement to end these hateful crimes in Illinois. As always, I hope you will contact me or my office with questions or concerns you may have. You can also visit my legislative website at www.senatormcconnaughay.com
State Senator for the 33rd District
McConnaughay sheds light on Village of Sleepy Hollow Volunteer Dennis Maxwell
Sen. McConnaughay sheds light on the volunteer service efforts of Dennis Maxwell, a 2015 Northern Kane County Chamber Community Service Award recipient from the Village of Sleepy Hollow in this week’s community service spotlight edition.
Dennis Maxwell has been an active member of the business and civic community in the Fox Valley area for more than three decades. His business involvement has included membership in the Northern Kane County Chamber of Commerce.
Optimism For 2016
Sen. McConnaughay said Senate Republicans remain committed in 2016 to passing a balanced and constitutional state budget and fundamental reforms to move Illinois forward and put the state back on track for more job creation, business investment, and economic prosperity.
Efficient and Accountable Government
On Jan. 4, the final report from Gov. Bruce Rauner’s task force on local government consolidation and unfunded mandates was made public. After 11 months of meetings, public hearings and study, the Task Force’s report outlines more than two dozen recommendations for streamlining local government, empowering communities and saving taxpayer dollars. The recommendations could become legislative proposals during the 2016 spring session, allowing lawmakers the time to give them a thorough review.
Economic Realities Send People Packing
A sluggish economy, a not seasonally adjusted Illinois unemployment rate (5.8%) that lags behind the national average (4.8%) – according to the most recent state analysis – and a consistent top ranking for out-migration, are telltale signs Illinois needs reforms to turn around its economic prospects.
Winter Flood Update
Although the flood waters are beginning to recede, Illinois continues to be plagued by flooding triggered by heavy rains during the last week of 2015. The Governor added 11 new counties to the list of State Disaster Areas on Jan. 5, bringing the total to 23 counties. These counties are now eligible for state assistance to battle flood waters and support their local communities. Resources include sandbags, sand, pumps, trucks, inmate crews, and other assistance to ensure public safety.
State Tax Refunds Delayed
The Illinois Department of Revenue (IDOR) announced Jan. 4 a delay in state income tax refunds. The agency cited concerns about fraud and identity theft. Tax filers submitting their returns electronically before March 1, 2016, will be issued refunds within two to three weeks of that date. Refunds for those filing returns on or after the March 1 date will be issued within two to three weeks from the date the return was submitted.