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Sandoval’s bill to explore high-speed rail projects passes committee

High-speed trainSPRINGFIELD – The Senate Transportation Committee passed a measure Tuesday sponsored by State Senator Martin A. Sandoval (D-Chicago) to create a commission that would explore opportunities to create a statewide high-speed rail network.

Senate Bill 1988 would create an 18 member High Speed Railway Commission comprised of representatives from state government and industry organizations that would create a plan to create a high-speed rail network connecting St. Louis with Chicago. The proposed route for the railway would pass through several Illinois cities, including Champaign, Decatur and Springfield.

“High speed rail could very well be a big part of the future of transportation in Illinois,” Sandoval said. “As Chair of the Transportation Committee, I want to ensure that we study all available options to move our transportation infrastructure forward.”

The measure passed committee as the Illinois Senate considers introducing a comprehensive plan to improve Illinois’ infrastructure. At a hearing on capital infrastructure needs on Monday, legislators heard from a representative from the Midwest High Speed Rail Association about the economic benefits and increased quality of life high speed rail could provide to Illinois residents.

“High-speed rail would make travel throughout the state of Illinois far easier and would improve our economy by fostering tourism and commerce,” Sandoval said. “I look forward to hearing the commission’s findings and plotting the best path forward to introducing more high speed rail projects in Illinois.”

The bill passed the Transportation Committee unanimously. It will now go before the entire Senate.

Sandoval: Decatur hearing moves us one step closer to infrastructure bill

Senator Sandoval

DECATUR – The Subcommittees on Capital for the Senate Transportations and Appropriations II Committees held their third joint hearing in Decatur Monday, hearing from local groups about capital infrastructure needs.

Representatives from local government, health care professionals, transportation experts and other interested parties testified before the subcommittees about existing capital and needs that should be addressed in a potential bill to release funding for infrastructure improvements around the state.

Sandoval’s measure to protect private information passes committee

sandoval 030519SPRINGFIELD – A bill sponsored by State Senator Martin A. Sandoval (D-Chicago) that would help protect confidential documents submitted with driver’s license or identification card applications passed the Senate Transportation Committee Tuesday.

“You have a reasonable expectation of privacy when you submit personal information to any entity and that includes the state of Illinois,” Sandoval said. “This piece of legislation will ensure that no one’s confidential information will end up in the wrong hands just because they applied for a driver’s license or ID card.”

Senate Bill 1344 prohibits confidential documents submitted to the Secretary of State for driver’s license or ID card applications from being released through the Freedom of Information Act. The measure provides that these confidential documents may only be released to the following parties:

  • The individual to whom the driver’s license or ID card was issued
  • Officers and employees of the Secretary of State in charge of issuing driver’s licenses and ID cards
  • Law enforcement officials for a criminal or civil law investigation
  • Any other entity the Secretary has authorized by rule

The bill passed the Transportation Committee unanimously. It will now go before the entire Senate.

House approves minimum wage increase cosponsored by Sandoval

sandoval 021519SPRINGFIELD – Legislation cosponsored by State Senator Martin A. Sandoval (D-Chicago) to increase the state’s minimum wage to $15 an hour passed the Illinois House of Representatives, marking a major win in the fight to ensure Illinois workers are guaranteed a fair wage.

“As legislators, we are committed to guaranteeing a living wage and protecting the dignity of workers,” Sandoval said. “I’m glad to see that the House followed our lead in approving this historic legislation recognizing the benefits this bill will bring to working class families in Illinois.”

Senate Bill 1 would gradually increase the minimum wage in Illinois to $15 an hour by 2025. The step-by-step rollout of the increase is designed to allow businesses to adjust to the law and adapt accordingly. The first increase will take effect on Jan. 1, 2020 and set the minimum wage at $9.25.

Illinois’ minimum wage has been $8.25 an hour since 2010.

Senate Bill 1 now awaits the governor’s signature.

Sen. Martin A. Sandoval

Majority Caucus Whip
11th District

Years served: 2003 - Present

Committee assignments: Energy and Public Utilities; Higher Education; Licensed Activities; Transportation (Chairperson); Subcommittee on Capital (Sub-Chairperson).

Biography: Full-time state legislator, born in The Back of the Yards, graduate of Loyola University in Chicago where he earned a Bachelor's of Science in psychology; married (wife, Marina) has three children.

Associated Representatives:
Michael J. Madigan
Celina Villanueva