McConnaughay Reports

A report from State Senator Karen McConnughay:

Senator McConnaughay’s Legislative Update: October 30, 2015

I wish everyone a safe and Happy Halloween weekend! I am looking forward to spending time with my grandkids and sharing this fun holiday with them! For a list of Trick-or-Treat hours and Halloween attractions in your town visit the Haunted Illinois website.< Halloween is not the only scare this weekend, as the state’s budget impasse is about to enter its fifth month. I continue my call for passing a balanced budget and moving forward on critical reforms needed to boost Illinois’ economy and create more jobs. This comes as Gov. Bruce Rauner announced plans to host a Nov. 18 budget meeting with legislative leaders to help forge a compromise to end the gridlock.

Also during the week, new data on Illinois’ economy gave further proof to the importance of passing pro-jobs, pro-growth legislation.

Sherman Hospital's patient wing.

Sherman Hospital’s patient wing.

Meanwhile, the city of Chicago doubled down on a tax-first spending plan, passing a budget with 10 new tax and fee hikes that will cost taxpayers in the city more than $750 million.

To end on a positive note, I want to again thank the sponsors of my annual Women’s Conference, Advocate Sherman Hospital, Comcast and Meijer, for providing the opportunity to host such a great event last Wednesday. And I want to thank the speakers, panelists and attendees who made this event memorable, insightful and empowering. If you missed this year’s conference here is a highlight video of some of the great speakers we had! Hope you can join us next year!

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


Karen McConnaughay
State Senator for the 33rd District

Budget meeting scheduled Nov. 18

Gov. Rauner announced plans during the week to host a meeting with the four legislativecaucus leaders on Nov. 18 in an effort to end the budget impasse. Republicans are calling for a balanced budget and pro-jobs reforms to turn Illinois’ unfriendly business climate and fiscal climate around. These reforms include workers’ compensation reform and term limits for elected officials.

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Struggling economy causing jobs loss, population drain

Seventeen years have passed since 1998, but one thing has barely changed: the number of jobs in Illinois.

A new report during the week found that total nonfarm employment in Illinois is currently about 5.91 million – the same as it was in July 1998.

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Rauner: More workers’ comp reforms needed

While a Crain’s report shows the 2011 workers’ compensation reform package is helping to reduce costs for businesses, Sen. McConnaughay says more needs to be done to make Illinois competitive again.

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Chicago approves record property tax hike

On Oct. 28, the Chicago City Council voted 36-14 to pass Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s 2016 city budget, which includes a record $588 million property tax hike.

The property tax hike represents the biggest such tax hike inmodern Chicago history, adding a further burden to residents already paying the second-highest property taxes of any state in the country, according to the national Tax Foundation.

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Illinois number one in pumpkin production

The Land of Lincoln leads the nation in pumpkin production, growing more than 90 percent of the pumpkins in the United States. Nationwide, 1.5 billion pounds of pumpkins are grown every year.

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Illinois trick-or-treat safety tips

Halloween fun is just around the corner. While children gear up with costumes and parties, it’s important to practice safe trick-or-treating in order for everyone to have a fun and safe holiday.

The website Haunted Illinois has a listing of trick-or-treat dates and times by community. There, you can also find a listing of Illinois haunted houses and Halloween-related events.

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2015 harvest nearly complete, but concerns remain for farmersOnly a few crop acres remain unharvested across Illinois. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, both the corn and soybean harvests currently stand at 93 percent complete. Winter wheat, which is often planted after soybeans are harvested, has now been planted on 84 percent of planned acres.

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