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Hastings sets new rules for consumer credit reporting agencies

Sen. Michael E. HastingsTINLEY PARK – Credit reporting agencies will no longer allow consumer reporting agencies to impose a charge on a consumer for placing a freeze, removing a freeze, or temporarily lifting a freeze on their credit reports, thanks to a new law championed by State Senator Michael E. Hastings (D-Tinley Park).

Hastings pushed for safeguards after Equifax announced that a security breach compromised the personal information of 143 million U.S. residents, including more than 5.4 million Illinois residents.

Equifax originally disclosed the breach in September of 2017, but since then, there have been multiple disclosures from the company that show more vital information was stolen than the company originally revealed. Just last month, Equifax informed the public that a small number of passport images and information were stolen as part of the security breach, despite previously denying such a thing occurred.  

Tom Cullerton supported measure to reform legislative ethics process signed into law

Sen. Tom CullertonVILLA PARK- There will now be stronger protections in place to investigate ethics complains in the state capital, thanks to a new measure supported by State Senator Tom Cullerton (D-Villa Park).

House Bill 138 makes important changes to the Legislative Ethics Commission and Office of the Legislative Inspector General such as allowing the Legislative Inspector General to investigate claims independently, without first getting approval from the Legislative Ethics Commission. Among other changes, the measure also mandates better defined and transparent reporting of complaints at the Commission and before the Inspector General.

"We should have zero tolerance for sexual harassment,” Cullerton said. “Survivors of sexual harassment and assault rely on extreme levels of bravery and courage in order to come forward. It’s our job to ensure that their complaint is being reviewed in a timely, transparent and orderly manner.”

Haine supports measure to ensure nursing homes aren’t punished for state’s mistakes

Sen. William R. HaineSPRINGFIELD – State Senator Bill Haine (D-Alton) co-sponsored and spoke adamantly in support of a measure passed by the Illinois Senate that will allow patients who have waited more than 45 days to determine their Medicaid status to become provisionally eligible.

Haine co-sponsored the legislation after hearing dozens of complaints from frustrated constituents who experienced significant delays in getting their Medicaid status approved.

Federal law requires the state to make this determination in less than 45 days, but in Illinois many patients have been callously forced to wait several months, and in some cases even up to a year.

Cunningham’s identity theft protection bill becomes law

Sen. Bill CunninghamSPRINGFIELD – Illinois residents will no longer have to pay a fee to protect their identity when freezing their credit thanks to legislation that was signed into law today.

House Bill 4095 is an initiative of Attorney General Lisa Madigan and State Senator Bill Cunningham, a Democrat representing Chicago and the Southwest Suburbs.

The new law will bar credit reporting agencies from charging consumers a fee to place or lift a freeze on their credit report, and gives consumers the ability to do so electronically or over the phone instead of by certified mail.

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