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Legal clinic seeks justice for housing fraud victims, Collins receives award for legislation targeting scams

collins ok 081318CHICAGO – State Senator Jacqueline Collins (D-Chicago) was the recipient of the first Lillie Pearl award from Mothers Opposed to Violence Everywhere (MOVE) in recognition of her legislative efforts on the same day a Chicago area legal clinic called on victims of alleged housing fraud to seek their help.

Collins received the award as Reverend Robin Hood, a West Side community activist and founding member of MOVE, and attorneys from Northwestern Pritzker School of Law’s Bluhm Legal Clinic announced they will partner on behalf of victims of Mark Diamond, who the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Illinois charged with defrauding more than 120 homeowners in a reverse mortgage scheme. Hood presented Collins with the award on the organization’s behalf at William Penn Elementary School during the observance of Martin Luther King Day, citing her legislation providing homeowners protections from reverse mortgage fraud.

Collins: Gun dealer certification law will curb firearms trafficking

collins 042418CHICAGO — State Senator Jacqueline Collins issued the following statement today as Gov. JB Pritzker signed into law a measure requiring all firearms dealers in Illinois to receive Illinois State Police certification and take measures to prevent theft.

“I proudly acted as chief co-sponsor of this legislation in the Senate because I believe that to stem the tide of violence in our city and our state, we must put an end to a culture of irresponsibility around firearm ownership and sales,” said Collins (D-Chicago). “Guns used in 17 percent of crimes in Chicago came from just three of the state’s gun dealers. We need to hold irresponsible businesses accountable.”

Senate Bill 337 requires firearms dealers to certify with State Police, train employees in conducting background checks, and take steps to prevent theft that leads to firearms trafficking.

“The previous administration obstructed this long overdue measure,” Collins said. “I’m glad to see a step toward sensible gun reform and call on the governor and my colleagues in the legislature to ensure that it will not be the last one.”

New law by Collins calls for simplified language in drafting laws

collins 042418SPRINGFIELD – To hold lawmakers to a writing standard more in line with plain English than dense legalese, a new law by State Senator Jacqueline Collins, signed this week, adopts federal plain language standards at the state level.

“In government, as in many professions where complicated topics are being debated and litigated, it becomes easy to get wrapped up in a cocoon of language that makes a lot of noise but says very little,” Collins said. “Government by and for the people should address the people in a way they can understand. And because the most powerful statements have always been the most straightforward, I believe this measure may have the happy side effect of producing better writing from our lawmakers.”

Senate Bill 3139 requires the General Assembly to use plain language when drafting legislation, executive orders and other public facing documents whenever practical, and advises the executive and judicial branches to do the same. The definition of “plain language” mirrors the federal Plain Writing Act standards passed in 2010.

Signed into law yesterday, the law is effective immediately.

Collins responds to veto of investment legislation

collins 042418CHICAGO – State Senator Jacqueline Collins issued the following statement today on news Gov. Bruce Rauner vetoed Senate Bill 2661, which would allow the State Treasurer more authority to invest in county and municipal bonds at market rates.

“The Treasurer’s duty to the taxpayers of Illinois is to invest state funds with diversity and at an acceptable level of risk,” Collins said. “Senate Bill 2661 would allow the Treasurer the ability to invest in county and municipal bonds at or above par, which not only ensures upside benefits, but provides downside protection in the event we see any major shifts in the interest rate. This veto by the governor limits the Treasurer, and I plan to lead an effort to override it when we return to Springfield in November.”

Sen. Jacqueline Y. Collins

16th Senate District

Years served:
2003 - Present

Committee assignments: Committee of the Whole; Financial Institutions (Chairperson); Insurance; Transportation.

Biography: Full-time state legislator. Born December 10th in McComb, Mississippi. Studied journalism at Northwestern University; MA from Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government; MA in Human Services Administration from Spertus College; MA in Theological Studies from Harvard Divinity School, June 2003. Former Emmy Award-nominated news editor at CBS-TV in Chicago, and 2001 Legislative Fellow with United States Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Associated Representatives:
Mary E. Flowers
André Thapedi