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  • munoz 021518Assistant Majority Leader Tony Munoz (D-Chicago) presented a resolution today honoring Commander Paul Bauer of the Chicago Police Department who was fatally injured in a confrontation with a suspect on February 13.

    Throughout his career, Commander Bauer earned 67 various awards and honorable mentions, including two for crime reduction. He joined the CPD as a 21-year-old, and served for more than 31 years.

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  • latinocaucusCHICAGO – On World Refugee Day, the Illinois Senate Latino Caucus demands an end to the Trump administration’s inhumane practices of ripping apart families at the border.

    As a result of U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ orders in April to adopt a zero-tolerance policy for illegal border crossings, including people requesting asylum, more than 2,300 children have been taken from their families and held in inhumane conditions.

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  • sandoval 041218SPRINGFIELD –The Illinois Senate passed a resolution today condemning Gov. Bruce Rauner’s statement that he would comply should President Donald Trump order Illinois National Guard soldiers to the Mexican border.

    State Senator Martin A. Sandoval (D-Chicago), son of immigrants and Illinois Latino Caucus co-chair, sponsored the measure, Senate Resolution 1593, and had strong words for the governor.

  • aquino 110917SPRINGFIELD-Illinois recently sent more than 100 Illinois Army National Guard troops to assist in the rebuilding of Puerto Rico in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, as many on the island continue to live without electricity or clean water.

    “Illinois has a large population of Puerto Ricans, and sending support to those who are struggling in their homeland is the right thing to do. I thank our troops who have been deployed to help as the people of Puerto Rico continue to rebuild,” said Senator Martin A. Sandoval (D-Chicago), Co-Chairman of the Latino Caucus.

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  • munoz 031518SPRINGFIELD – A bipartisan group in the Illinois Senate took part in a symbolic walkout Wednesday to demand gun control in solidarity with the nation’s youth, then accompanied the move with practical action.

    That action is a ban on the sale of assault rifles to individuals under the age of 21.

    “As a former police officer, I have seen firsthand the damage these weapons can do in the wrong hands. It’s horrifying,” Assistant Majority Leader Tony Munoz (D-Chicago) said. “We have to do better to prevent this violence, and this is a step in the right direction.”

    House Bill 1465 prohibits the sale or transfer of assault weapons and attachments, .50-caliber rifles and large-capacity magazines to individuals under the age of 21.

    Munoz said the legislation is spurred by ongoing violence, as well as concerns about the growing prevalence of assault rifle use on the streets of Chicago. In particular, 13 people were shot by assault-style rifles last May in two neighborhoods represented by Munoz.

    “If we don’t take action, we will continue to be met with tragedy,” Munoz said. “This measure is one step toward a solution, and it’s a signal that we are finally ready to act.” 

    The measure was amended to include an affirmative defense for those under 21 who possess an assault weapon or the banned equipment prior to the enactment of the measure. The bill will head back to the House for consideration.

  • munoz vets 042116SPRINGFIELD – When Jauwan Hall, a former Marine, transferred to the University of Illinois at Chicago from Kennedy-King College he was unaware that the same military courses wouldn’t be counted toward his degree, and he would have to retake the classes.

    “There was no mechanism in place to designate those courses as UIC courses so there’s no mechanism that tells people in the registrar’s office that this course is equivalent to this course,” Hall said. “There were people at the university who were aware of the issue and were trying to work with the university to implement something university-wide.”

    “But after having some conversations with administrators and other students it made sense to try to get something done legislatively because this is an issue that could be affecting veterans at a bunch of different state universities.”

    State Senator Antonio “Tony” Munoz (D-Chicago) proposed legislation approved by the Senate today that requires the state’s public universities and community colleges to develop a policy for awarding college credit for military courses.

    “There should be a clear policy for accepting military courses into our university system,” said Munoz, an Army veteran. “Veterans should not be shortchanged on the education they received while serving our country.”

    Schools would use the Joint Services Transcript, a synchronized transcript presenting data for the United States Army, Marine Corp, Navy and Coast Guard, to determine areas where college credit is applicable and interpret the number of hours the institution would credit.

    Senate Bill 2960 will now head to the House for consideration.

  • munoz vets 041216SPRINGFIELD - Service members looking to obtain college credit for military courses may soon have an easier process when transferring credits to a public university or community college in Illinois, under a Senate plan that was approved in committee today.

    The proposal, which passed the higher education committee unanimously, requires the state’s public universities and community colleges to develop a written policy for awarding college credit for military courses taken through the Armed Forces.

  • munoz 050218SPRINGFIELD – Assistant Illinois Senate Majority Leader Tony Munoz (D-Chicago) is working to close a loophole that allows car thieves to avoid accountability in court.

    Currently, officers are required to establish if the person driving a stolen vehicle has “knowledge” that the vehicle is stolen or converted in order to pursue charges. Knowledge is especially difficult to prove when the driver has the keys to a stolen vehicle, as occurs when a vehicle is obtained after a carjacking.

    “Current law makes it too easy for car thieves to avoid taking full responsibility for their crimes,” Munoz said. “This measure gives law enforcement the tools to hold offenders accountable and get justice for car owners who are victims to these crimes.”

    Senate Bill 2339 changes the law so “knowledge” that a vehicle is stolen may be inferred from surrounding facts and circumstances, which would lead a reasonable person to believe that the vehicle was stolen.

    The legislation also creates a new process to deal with minors held for carjacking or possession of a stolen motor vehicle. The change would require minors charged with those crimes to be evaluated and given access to counseling and other recommended services.

    The plan will now move to the House for consideration.

  • munoz 041718SPRINGFIELD- Retiring Illinois State Police Officers could soon have the option of purchasing their service weapon and badge under legislation sponsored by Assistant Majority Leader Tony Munoz (D-Chicago).

    “As an officer, you carry your badge and gun every day,” Munoz said. “They are symbols of a career in law enforcement, and retiring officers have earned the opportunity to keep them as an honor to their commitment and service.”

  • munoz 052418SPRINGFIELD – Assistant Majority Leader Antonio “Tony” Munoz (D-Chicago) advanced legislation Thursday giving the Illinois State Police tools to better evaluate Firearm Owners Identification Card applications.

    “This measure provides the State Police the proper information for them to make the right decisions when it comes to administering FOID cards,” Munoz said. “It closes a loophole that was potentially putting guns in the hands of individuals who are unfit to possess them.”

    Currently, individuals who have been a patient of a mental health facility within the past five years are ineligible to receive a FOID card. House Bill 4855 expands the definition of patient to include those who are placed in a mental health facility against their will, but ultimately not court ordered.

    The legislation also:

    • Changes the Illinois State Police’s requirement to approve or deny FOID card renewals within a 30-day period to a 60-day period.
    • Allows for the suspension of an individual's FOID card if the card is subject to revocation for a reason that is not grounds for permanent revocation.

    The proposal now moves to the governor’s desk for final approval before it becomes law.

  • munoz 020818SPRINGFIELD – A new scratch-off Illinois Lottery game will create more revenue to benefit police memorials if a measure led by Assistant Majority Leader Tony Munoz (D-Chicago) becomes law.

    The legislation, Senate Bill 2337, was approved in the Senate Revenue Committee yesterday .

    “Preserving the memory of fallen officers through memorials, scholarships and assistance to their families shows our gratitude for their service,” said Munoz, a former Chicago police officer. “The families of these brave officers deserve support as they continue to heal from their loss, and they deserve to know their loved one’s service isn’t forgotten.”

  • munoz 031517SPRINGFIELD — Veterans could soon gain expanded access to rehabilitation treatment through the Veteran and Servicemember Court program under a proposal that was approved in the Senate Criminal Law Committee yesterday. The measure, sponsored by State Senator Tony Munoz (D-Chicago), allows veterans to request to participate in the Veterans Treatment Court after sentencing.

    Often veterans do not recognize they have a problem or want to address the issue until after sentencing.  At that point, under current law, they are no longer eligible to receive assistance.

    “Unfortunately, a number of our veterans are struggling with substance and alcohol abuse as a result of their time in the Armed Forces, and we need to make sure they can take advantage of programs that help with their reintegration,” said Munoz, an Army veteran.

    The Veterans Treatment Court is a structured system that requires participants to report to meetings with a probation officer, report to appointments with a VA case manager, attend drug or alcohol rehabilitation programs as required, and adhere to other recommendations and requirements.

    Veterans who complete the VTC program may have their original charges dismissed, have their sentence terminated or be discharged from any further proceedings.

    Senate Bill 1312 now moves to the full Senate for consideration.

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    Assistant Majority Leader Antonio “Tony” Munoz (D-Chicago) reminds drivers to be cautious when driving on expressways and move over when approaching a vehicle stranded on the side of the road.

    In 2000, Lieutenant Scott Gillen of the Chicago Fire Department was struck and killed by an intoxicated driver on the Dan Ryan Expressway. As a way to commemorate his life and protect emergency personnel from accidents or injury, Scott’s Law was passed to enforce penalties on drivers who cause accidents, injuries, or don’t yield to emergency vehicles.

    Recently, that law was expanded to cover all stranded motor vehicles as far too many accidents have occurred involving vehicles stranded on the expressway.

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  • munoz 051018SPRINGFIELD- Assistant Majority Leader Antonio “Tony” Munoz (D-Chicago) advanced legislation Wednesday giving the Illinois State Police tools to better evaluate Firearm Owners Identification Card applications.

    “We want to make sure we’re not handing out FOID cards to individuals who are a potential threat to public safety,” Munoz said. “And we want to make sure the Illinois State Police have the proper information to evaluate these applications.”

    Currently, individuals who have been a patient of a mental health facility within the past five years are ineligible to receive a FOID card. House Bill 4855 expands the definition of patient to include those who are placed in a mental health facility against their will, but ultimately not court ordered.

    The legislation also:

    • Changes the Illinois State Police’s requirement to approve or deny FOID card renewals within a 30-day period to a 60-day period.
    • Allows for the suspension of an individual's FOID card if the card is subject to revocation for a reason that is not grounds for permanent revocation

    The proposal now moves to the full Senate for consideration.

     

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