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Hutchinson advances plan to expand Child Care Assistance Program

Senator HutchinsonSPRINGFIELD – A working family of three who earns up to $41,560 per year would be eligible for the Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP) under a proposal by State Senator Toi Hutchinson (D-Chicago Heights) that passed the Senate Human Services Committee Tuesday afternoon.

“Working families are finding it harder and harder to afford the ever-increasing cost of child care,” Hutchinson said. “For many families, it makes more financial sense for one parent to stay at home rather than work at all. And for single parents, the cost is often overwhelming.”

Hutchinson’s plan, contained in Senate Bill 1679, would raise the income threshold for qualifying for CCAP from 185 percent of the federal poverty level to 200 percent of the federal poverty level. Currently, for a family of three, 185 percent of the federal poverty level represents $38,443 per year. Under Hutchinson’s plan, families of three could earn up to $41,560 and still qualify for the program.

CCAP provides financial assistance to low-income families so they can afford to enroll their children into the child care program. While the program was once nationally recognized, Gov. Rauner made drastic cuts to the program in 2015, reducing eligibility for 90 percent of CCAP participants. While the governor’s cuts were later reversed, the high-profile cuts to the program have led to decreased enrollment by working families.

“Every child requires someplace safe to be so their parents can be full and active participants in our economy,” Hutchinson said.

Senate Bill 1679 was heard in the Senate Human Services Committee on Tuesday afternoon and will now move to the Senate floor for further debate.

Hutchinson teaming with Assessor Fritz Kaegi on reforms to property tax system

hutchinson 031219SPRINGFIELD – With property tax bills continuing to climb across Illinois, State Senator Toi Hutchinson (D-Chicago Heights) is working with newly elected Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi on a set of reforms to Illinois’ antiquated property tax system.

“Anyone who owns property in Illinois understands how outdated and regressive our property tax system is,” Hutchinson said. “It is something we all know and discuss, but have done little to address. This proposal would take a meaningful step forward to increase accuracy and transparency for Illinois taxpayers.”

Hutchinson has introduced Senate Bill 1379, which is a comprehensive set of reforms to Cook County’s property tax system. While the proposal would primarily apply to Cook County, all Illinois counties would have the ability to adopt the requirements.

Senate Bill 1379 would improve data collection by giving the Cook County Assessor’s Office the ability to collect operating income and expense data to more accurately deliver property assessments. The change would bring Cook County and Illinois in line with professional practices in other states and cities, including Washington D.C., Boston and Seattle.

“This legislation – which would put Cook County and Illinois on par with other leading business centers in the United States against whom we compete for jobs and talent – is the single most important legislative step for reform of our property tax system,” said Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi. “With one straightforward law, Springfield can decrease risks and costs to real estate participants while boosting transparency, creating valuable market data and improving our state’s investment climate and reputation.”

Senate Bill 1379 was heard recently in the Senate Revenue Committee where it passed without opposition. Hutchinson has vowed to continue working with stakeholders in the weeks ahead before calling the proposal for a final vote.

Hutchinson: The time is now for us to come together to turn Illinois around

hutchinson 022019SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Toi Hutchinson (D-Chicago Heights) released the following statement this afternoon after attending Gov. Pritzker’s budget address in Springfield:

“What we just heard was the most honest and frank assessment of the clear consequences of a 736-day budget crisis that exacerbated every known problem the State of Illinois already had.

“Our ridiculous habit of careening from crisis to crisis has landed us where we are today and that means the time is now for all of us to come together to figure out how to turn the great State of Illinois around.

“It has to be done and it must be done. Because the people of the great State of Illinois are worth fighting for.”

 

 

State grant to provide millions in property tax relief to South Suburban homeowners

hutchinson 051018SPRINGFIELD – Homeowners and small businesses across the South Suburbs will see decreases in their property tax bills under a new state grant program that seeks to provide relief to school districts in high-taxed areas.

The Property Tax Relief Grant was included in the historic school funding reform law supported by Hutchinson that has already provided millions of dollars in new state funds to school districts that need it the most. In the first year alone, the 40th Senate District received nearly $10 million in additional state funding.

“Communities with little property wealth have been forced to increase their taxes year after year, placing a high burden on homeowners and small businesses and cheating students out of a quality education,” State Senator Toi Hutchinson (D-Chicago Heights) said. “For many South Suburban communities, this has only increased economic disinvestment and neighborhood stagnation.”

Several local school districts will be eligible for the tax relief grant, including: 

  • Rich Township High School District 227 ($2,736,497)
  • Bloom Township H.S. District 206 ($2,168,029)
  • Homewood-Flossmoor Community High School District 233 ($1,963,818)
  • Park Forest School District 163 ($573,153)

In order to receive the state grant, eligible school districts must submit an abatement resolution to their county clerks by March 30. The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) will then distribute the grants once receiving all abatement certificates.

“The new funding law represents a fundamental shift in how we pay for education in Illinois,” Hutchinson said. “Reducing reliance on property taxes while increasing state support is the only way of ensuring no Illinois student is relegated to a sub-par education simply because of their ZIP code.”

More information on the Property Tax Relief Grant and a listing of each eligible school district can be found at www.ISBE.net/proptaxrelief.

Sen. Toi W. Hutchinson


40th District

Years served: 
2009 - Present

Committee assignments: Executive; Judiciary; Public Health; Revenue (Chairperson); Transportation; Subcommittee on Special Issues.

Biography: Full-time state legislator; Born May 20, 1973; Graduated University of Illinois at Urbana with a Bachelor in English; Olympia Fields Village Clerk from 2002-2006; Harvard Kennedy School of Government Executive Management Program; Women and Power, 2004; Former Chief of Staff to State Senator Debbie Halvorson; Lives in Olympia Fields with husband, Paul, and 3 children.

Associated Representatives:
Anthony DeLuca
Lindsay Parkhurst