Thursday, 06 March 2014 Senate Democratic Caucus Staff
Thursday, 06 March 2014 Drew Hill
SPRINGFIELD – Businesses in Gifford are struggling to recover from November’s tornadoes. State Senator Michael Frerichs (D-Champaign) moved legislation today that would protect business owners in the affected communities from higher property taxes.
“Without this proposal, business owners would not only have to face the cost of rebuilding and repairing their businesses and homes, but also the burden of having to pay higher property taxes due to the value added by the new construction,” said Frerichs. “This proposal will help owners of damaged properties not be dragged down by a drastic increase in their tax bills.”
Friday, 28 February 2014 Deb McCarver
Thursday, 27 February 2014 Drew Hill
“DCFS has a lot of caring, motivated employees doing the incredibly difficult job of protecting children. But, what the agency is doing as a whole clearly isn’t working well enough. A director with vision and experience could help change that.” – State Senator Julie Morrison
SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Julie Morrison (D-Deerfield), chair of the Illinois Senate Subcommittee on Issues Relating to DCFS, is calling on Governor Pat Quinn to undertake a national search for the next director of the Department of Children and Family Services. The agency is on its fourth director in four months.
“DCFS needs strong, consistent leadership,” said Morrison, who is sponsoring several measures to help reform the struggling child welfare agency. “This constant turnover of the agency’s top post is putting abused and neglected children at risk. I believe Governor Quinn shares my concerns, and I urge him to undertake a national search.”
The turnover at DCFS began in November when then-director Richard Calica resigned due to health concerns. He has since passed away. Calica was replaced by Interim Director Denise Gonzalez, who served little more than a month before Governor Quinn appointed Arthur Bishop to take over the agency. Mr. Bishop resigned yesterday after a series of news reports questioning his fitness for the post. Yet another interim director will take over the head spot at the agency on Friday.
Thursday, 20 February 2014 Deb McCarver
Friday, 22 November 2013 Diana Martinez
Lack of trauma centers means lives are being lost, say concerned lawmakers and officials
Someone shot or otherwise seriously injured on Chicago’s violence-plagued South Side waits nearly 50 percent longer to get to a trauma center than anywhere else in the city, a delay that medical experts say costs lives and that local community leaders and a leading area lawmaker say is simply unacceptable.
The situation came under the spotlight earlier this week when Illinois State Senator Mattie Hunter, a Chicago Democrat, convened the first-of-its kind hearing looking into the lack of trauma centers across a wide swath of the city’s South Side.
These neighborhoods have been dubbed “trauma center deserts” because of the scarcity of high-level emergency care for adults. The real-world implications are that victims of violence have to be transported greater distances in situations where every second can be precious.
Wednesday, 06 November 2013 Senate Democratic Caucus Staff
"We stand on the right side of history as the House joined the Senate in passage of marriage equality. We are one step closer to ensuring all Illinois citizens are treated equally under the law, regardless of whom they love," Frerichs said.
Illinois joins Connecticut, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Vermont, Washington, Rhode Island, California, Minnesota and the District of Columbia in allowing marriage equality.
Tuesday, 29 October 2013 Deb McCarver
Specific guidelines on how to obtain the state’s newly expanded Temporary Visitor Driver's License have been announced by Senate President John J. Cullerton and Secretary of State Jesse White.
“As Washington D.C. deals with the issues of immigration, we here in Illinois have to deal with the safety of our roads,” Cullerton said. “This bipartisan law recognized the fact that there’s over a quarter-million undocumented drivers on the roads without the benefit of proper training, testing and insurance.”
Thursday, 24 October 2013 Senate Democratic Caucus Staff
SPRINGFIELD- State Senator Mike Frerichs (D-Champaign) released the following statement in reaction to yesterday's Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability hearing on changes made to retiree health insurance.
"I was disappointed the department threw out and didn't consider the lowest bid without even looking at it," said Frerichs. "The state needs to make sure everything is done ethically and above board. We should not lose sight of the fact it is our job to make sure we provide the best services at the lowest cost for the most people in Illinois. I don't think that happened."
The Department of Central Management Services did not consider Health Alliance's bid since they did not meet the minimum threshold of covering 1,000 retirees.
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