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Lightford: Children should not be expelled before kindergarten

lightford 051917SPRINGFIELD- Children in public preschools are more than three times more likely to be expelled than children in kindergarten through 12th grades, according to a report by Fight Crime: Invest in Kids Illinois. Assistant Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford (D-Maywood) leads a proposal that would keep more at-risk preschool students in the classroom.

The proposal, which was approved in the Senate today, would prohibit the expulsion of children enrolled in early childhood programs receiving grants from the Illinois State Board of Education. The legislation focuses on transitioning children to programs that better fit a child’s needs.

Manar responds to Rauner administration’s criticism of Senate’s school funding vote

manar fix 051717SPRINGFIELD – Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill), a widely respected advocate for fair school funding in Illinois, issued the following statement regarding criticism leveled by the Rauner administration today immediately following the Senate’s passage of Senate Bill 1, a school funding reform measure sponsored by Manar:

“The Rauner administration and Republicans want to behave like this is a vexing new problem that Illinois has never tried to tackle before. The truth is this is a more than 20-year-old problem that we have studied to death, repeatedly debated and willfully ignored.

Trotter helps pay bill backlog to vendors, providers

trotter 051717SPRINGFIELD – Today, legislation intended to provide financial relief to providers and vendors who do business with the state passed the Senate. Senate Bill 4 enables the state to borrow $7 billion over a seven-year period through General Obligation Restructuring Bonds. The bonds will be put into the General Revenue Fund for costs incurred prior to July 1, 2017. 

It also allows the Illinois Finance Authority to issue $250 million in State Pension Obligation Acceleration Bonds to help pay down pension debt the state has incurred.

Tom Cullerton passes monumental government consolidation measure

tc consol 051717SPRINGFIELD- State Senator Tom Cullerton (D-Villa Park) successfully passed Senate Bill 3 which will take DuPage County’s bipartisan government consolidation model statewide.

DuPage County’s government consolidation model is expected to save taxpayers more than $100 million over the next 20 years.

“This monumental government consolidation legislation is making sure government is working for the people,” Cullerton said. “The best way to lower property taxes without sacrificing services is to empower voters to eliminate and combine services. It is a no-brainer.