From left: State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rusvhille), Quincy University President Robert Gervais and Illinois Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago) toured Quincy University on Monday. The three discussed potential investments in infrastructure, upcoming technology improvements and the status of the university. They also viewed a presentation by the university's mock trial team.
Senator John M. Sullivan News
SPRINGFIELD – State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville) voted to support the state constitution and protect the retirement benefits of teachers, university personnel and state employees by opposing Senate Bill 1.
The plan to reduce benefits passed both the House and Senate on Tuesday and will become law if the governor signs the bill, which he is expected to do so.
"This proposal has a drastic and negative impact on both current and retired employees, and—I believe—it has serious constitutional issues," Sullivan said. "I understand the enormous need for pension reform, but this isn't it."
The plan slashes cost-of-living adjustments for the retirees, freezes cost-of-living increases for current employees and raises the retirement age of existing employees.
Sullivan said there is a better, fairer way to reduce pension costs. He supported a reform measure this summer, Senate Bill 2404, that saved $50 billion, was a negotiated bill and he believes is constitutional.
"Retirees have planned and saved based on promises from the state. It has to be our job to find equitable solutions without breaking those promises," Sullivan said. "I wouldn't be surprised if we are back here in a year or two voting on a new plan after the courts find this one unconstitutional."
SPRINGFIELD – A plan to reinstate Medicaid adult dental benefits recently passed the Illinois State Senate and awaits a vote in the House. State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville) is co-sponsoring the legislation, House Bill 1516, which passed with bipartisan support.
"I've heard from individuals, dentists and health care providers about how the lack of dental coverage for adults has negatively impacted our communities by placing additional pressure on hospital emergency rooms." Sullivan said. "So many medical problems stem from improper dental health. By extending these benefits we can increase prevention and significantly improve people's lives."
A law signed in 2012 cut all Medicaid dental coverage except for emergency procedures. The proposed new law reinstates preventive care that includes fillings, crowns, root canals, dentures and teeth extractions.
"When I saw the human cost of the lack of dental services there was no question in my mind that these benefits needed to be reinstated," Sullivan said.
SPRINGFIELD – State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville) is co-sponsoring a plan that allows youths, ages 16 or younger, to hunt when they are supervised by a parent, grandparent or guardian who is 21 or older and holds a valid state hunting license. This legislation, Illinois Youth Hunting License program, recently passed the Illinois Senate with a 57-0 vote.
"The more hunting opportunities we provide to the youth of this state the sooner they will experience the great outdoors, appreciate conservation and become better sportsmen," Sullivan said. "There is a proud tradition of hunting in Illinois and this plan gives families more chances to pass that tradition on to the next generation."
The new license will cost $7 and allows youth hunting throughout the appropriate seasons with a bow, crossbow or firearm. The license can be renewed every year until the minor turns 17. Upon turning 17, they will need to take the hunter safety course and obtain a regular Illinois Hunting License.
This program is based on the success of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources' apprentice hunting license program, but it only allowed for a one-time license.
The proposal, Senate Bill 853, passed the Senate without opposition and now moves to the House for consideration.
MONMOUTH — State Senator John Sullivan spoke to a Monmouth College's American Politics course Sept. 27 and discussed how he became involved in politics at a young age, passing his first bill in the Senate and the unique challenges of Illinois government.
"What a diverse group of people there are in this state, especially when it comes to passing legislation," he said. "The legislators from Chicago don't always grasp our agriculture needs. I, in turn, don't always grasp their needs."
To read the full Monmouth College News article, click here.
SPRINGFIELD — The Illinois State Police have finalized training materials and guidelines for instructors and that as of Oct. 1, instructors can begin training individuals for concealed-carry licenses.
ISP has approved 757 instructors from across the state and released a list of existing training programs that will satisfy the 16-hour training requirement.
Applications for concealed-carry licenses will be available Jan. 5, 2014, but individuals must complete the required 16 hours beforehand.
To find a registered concealed carry license instructor, click here.
For a list of existing training programs, click here.
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Assistant Majority Leader
Committee assignments: Committee of the Whole; Financial Institutions; Higher Education; Appropriations II (Chairperson); Pensions and Investments; Transportation; Deficit Reduction; Trans. Subcommittee on Amendments; Subcomm.on Pension Enhancements.
Biography: Graduate of Quincy College; partner in family auction and real estate business; lives north of Rushville on the family farm with wife, Joan, and their four children: Matthew, Emily, Luke and Mark.