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Link fights for police and firefighter pension consolidation

police fire 032019SPRINGFIELD – A bipartisan measure to consolidate most police and firefighter pension funds throughout the state passed the Illinois Senate Thursday with support from State Senator Terry Link (D-Indian Creek).

“This proposal retains benefits while also making our system more productive and efficient,” Link said. “The pension crisis is one of the biggest issues we’ve been dealing with in this state for years, and the legislation we passed today marks a major step toward solving that problem.”

Senate Bill 1300 would consolidate all of the state’s nearly 650 police and firefighter pension funds outside of Chicago into two individual and separate funds over a 30-month transition period.

Consolidation of these pension funds is expected to provide them with a greater return on investments and save taxpayers an estimated $160 million each year, while not affecting individual pension amounts.

The legislation also allows local pension fund boards to retain authority to rule on benefits.

“We wanted to ensure that we preserved local authority over pension benefits while also providing enhanced investment opportunities and saving taxpayer dollars,” Link said. “This measure makes financial sense for pension recipients, the pension funds themselves and Illinois taxpayers.”

The measure passed the Senate by a vote of 42-12. It will now be sent to the governor’s desk for approval.

Link passes measures to ban public use of e-cigarettes

E-CigarettesSPRINGFIELD – A measure sponsored by State Senator Terry Link (D-Indian Creek) that would ban public consumption of e-cigarettes passed the Illinois state Senate Tuesday.

“It’s only fair that we treat these products the same way we treat cigarettes,” Link said. “It’s still unclear what the health effects of these devices are and people shouldn’t be forced to be exposed to them in public places if they don’t want to.”

According to the Centers on Disease Control and Prevention, there have been more than 1,600 cases of vaping-related ailments reported, including 34 deaths across 24 states.

Senate Bill 1864 would expand the Smoke Free Illinois Act by prohibiting the use of e-cigarettes and other alternative nicotine products in public places, places of employment and within 15 feet of building entrances.

The measure could also help curb youth-cigarette use.

Pension loophole closed under new Link law

Sen. Terry LinkSPRINGFIELD – After a high-profile loophole allowed several Lake County Board members to draw their Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund (IMRF) pension while still serving on the county board, State Senator Terry Link (D-Indian Creek) passed a proposal to end the practice.

On Friday, Link’s proposal was signed into law by Gov. Pritzker.

“No elected official should be both serving in office while also drawing a retirement check for the work done in that capacity,” Link said. “It is a clear violation of the public trust and an integrity issue, as county board members have the ability to pass measures that could increase their own retirement benefits.”

New law reaffirms protections for childhood sexual abuse victims

link 030719SPRINGFIELD – Childhood sexual abuse victims would be reaffirmed in their right to bring civil charges against their perpetrator and those who fraudulently concealed their crime under a proposal sponsored by State Senator Terry Link (D-Indian Creek) that was signed into law yesterday by Gov. Pritzker. 

“Childhood sexual abuse is a trauma that most of us cannot even fathom,” Link said. “While healing may take years or even decades, confronting an accuser is often an integral part of the healing process for survivors. Our laws should reflect our values that victims and their rights should be protected.”

Link’s new law – which passed under Senate Bill 1868 – reaffirms the ability of victims of childhood sexual abuse cases to bring a civil claim against an abuser or an individual who fraudulently concealed the crime. The law will ensure victims are able to recoup civil damages if there is evidence that their perpetrator intentionally tried to conceal the crime.

Link introduced the proposal after a report issued by former Attorney General Lisa Madigan in December of 2018 revealed accusations of child sexual abuse against nearly 700 Catholic priests throughout Illinois.

In 2013, Link passed a law eliminating the statute of limitations on bringing civil claims for damages from childhood sexual abuse.

“While it is impossible to go back in time and prevent these horrific crimes from occurring, we should be doing everything in our power to seek justice for these individuals,” Link said.

Senate Bill 1868 was signed yesterday and goes into effect immediately.

Sen. Terry Link

Assistant Majority Leader Terry Link

30th District
Assistant Majority Leader

Years served:
1997 - Present

Committee assignments: Assignments; Energy and Public Utilities; Executive Appointments; Executive; Financial Institutions (Vice-Chairperson); Insurance; Subcommittee on Gaming (Sub-Chairperson).

Biography: Partner, Lake County Industrial Equipment; born March 20, 1947, in Waukegan; attended Stout State University; married (wife, Susan McCall Link), has four children.

Associated Representatives:
Daniel Didech
Rita Mayfield