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The Majority Report 08/02/15 - Reform, relief, runways


Another chance for school reform, property tax relief

Another chance for school reform, property tax reliefIn an effort to meet Governor Rauner halfway on his request for a property tax freeze, Senate President John Cullerton renewed efforts for a comprehensive plan that also covers public school funding, making the case to Chicago media outlets this past week. The compromise plan advances a two-year property tax freeze while forcing a complete overhaul of our broken school funding formula and shoring up finances for Chicago Public Schools.

"For too long the problems of soaring property taxes and inequitable school funding have gone ignored at the Capitol," said Cullerton. "This plan provides relief for homeowners while forcing a fix on what is truly broken in Illinois - school funding."

At the Chicago Tribune, editorial board member Kristen McQueary penned an opinion piece asking Governor Rauner and Republican lawmakers to support the legislation when it makes its way to the Senate floor this week. A similar plan failed recently in the Senate when not a single Republican offered support.

"It's time for Republicans to show some courage and vote for a bill that will have greater impact statewide, particularly for south suburban, downstate and rural school districts suffering from dwindling property wealth," McQueary wrote in her opinion piece. "Those districts stand to gain through reworking education funding."

Read more about the Senate President's efforts in the Tribune Editorial and Commentary.


New Mulroe laws address O’Hare noise problem

New Mulroe laws address O’Hare noise problemThe number of runways allotted to O'Hare International Airport is officially raised from eight to 10, thanks to a proposal sponsored by Senator John Mulroe (D-Chicago) in an effort to better disperse flights and accompanying noise. The measure was signed into law by the governor last week.

"We wanted to get the FAA and the City of Chicago to engage us in the conversation about the ill effects airport noise has on residents in my and others' districts," Mulroe said. "It became clear to us that the noise problem greatly escalated following the completion of the O'Hare Modernization Program."

Changing runways >




New laws to boost jobs, local economies

Legislative measures from three senators intended to encourage new and growing business and industry were signed into law by the governor last week.


Tom Cullerton's crowdfunding initiative

Tom Cullerton's crowdfunding initiativeNew businesses struggling to raise money to take their companies to the next level will soon have a new method to find funding. State Senator Tom Cullerton's (D-Villa Park) initiative makes Illinois more business friendly by instituting intrastate crowdfunding exemptions has become law.

"If we want to continue to grow as a state, we need to continue to give small businesses the tools to succeed," said Cullerton. "This initiative will create a vital partnership between investors and small businesses to spur economic development in our communities."

Draw a crowd >





Harris creates equal economic opportunity task force

Harris creates equal economic opportunity task forceLegislation sponsored by State Senator Napoleon Harris (D-Harvey) creating an Equal Economic Opportunity Task Force was signed into law last week.

"This marks an important step forward in creating successful economic development in communities that are facing real economic trouble," said Harris. "This task force will create the path to thriving local businesses and economic development, and allow people in our communities the opportunity to start businesses."

Task force >





Forby package helps grow Southern Illinois oil and gas industry

Forby package helps grow Southern Illinois oil and gas industryState Senator Gary Forby (D-Benton) led lawmakers in developing a package of measures to address permits, payments and processes for the growing oil and gas industry in Southern Illinois. The bills recently were signed by the governor.

"The abundant wealth of natural resources that Southern Illinois furnishes offers a long term source of economic activity to develop jobs in our region," Senator Forby said. "We need to put measures in place to allow the energy industry to remain sustainable and have opportunities to expand into the future."

Jobs ahead >




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