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Martinez bill would expand opportunity for professional licenses

Assistant Majority Leader Iris Y. MartinezSPRINGFIELD — Assistant Majority Leader Iris Y. Martinez (D-Chicago) is continuing her work to ensure all qualified applicants are eligible for professional licenses, regardless of their citizenship status.

“If anyone in our state wants to contribute by working hard and paying taxes, they should not be denied because of where they were born,” Martinez said. “I am glad to continue the work we started last year by expanding the ability for immigrants to apply for professional licenses.”

Martinez passed a law last year ensuring that citizenship is not required for licenses issued by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional or State Board of Education. It also requires the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation to allow an applicant to use a taxpayer identification number as an alternative to a Social Security number.

Her new measure expands that requirement by stating that, unless otherwise provided by law, no department shall deny an occupational or professional license based solely on the applicant's citizenship status or immigration status.

The legislation also specifically modifies the Illinois Explosives Act, the Illinois Plumbing License Law, the Water Well and Pump Installation Contractor's License Act, the Illinois Horse Meat Act, the Liquor Control Act of 1934, the Safety Deposit License Act and the Coal Mining Act to ensure U.S. citizenship is not a prerequisite for licensure.

Senate Bill 1166 passed the Senate and now awaits action in the House.

Senator Iris Y. Martinez

Assistant Majority Leader Iris Y. Martinez

Assistant Majority Leader
20th District

Years served:
2003 - Present
 
Committee assignments: Commerce and Economic Development; Education; Energy and Public Utilities; Executive; Government Accountability/Pensions (Vice-Chairperson); Transportation.

Biography: Born Feb. 25, 1956, in Chicago; earned her bachelor's degree in public policy and administration from Northeastern Illinois University in 2009; elected president of the National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators. She is also the Illinois Legislative Latino Caucus Co-Chair; has one daughter.

Associated Representatives:
Jaime M. Andrade, Jr.
Will Guzzardi