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SPRINGFIELD – To offer support to workers, a group of pro-business Democratic lawmakers held a press conference Wednesday to advocate for an initiative to require the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation to expedite complete professional license applications.

“Health care workers, accountants, speech pathologists and a variety of others are eager, qualified and ready to enter their respective industries but are waiting months for professional licenses to be issued by the state,” said State Senator Suzy Glowiak Hilton (D-Western Springs), chief Senate sponsor of Senate Bill 670. “Improving convenience, timeliness and accessibility for working people is a necessary step to building our economy and focusing efforts on recovery.”

Under the legislation, IDFPR is required to process applications within four weeks as long as there were no deficiencies submitted.

“We have a shortage of trained experts right now—especially in the real estate, financial and health care fields, which the DFPR regulates,” said State Rep. Mike Halpin (D-Rock Island), chief House sponsor. “Eliminating gratuitous licensing wait times will help fill that gap while cutting down on red tape. I’m happy to join my distinguished colleagues in helping make this legislation law.”

The proposal supports an effort to benefit workers and support economic development throughout the state for an array of industries.

“If you have all the qualifications and there are no discrepancies in your license, then this process shouldn’t keep you waiting months in order to practice your profession,” said State Senator Steve Stadelman (D-Rockford).

Senate Bill 670 passed the Senate with bipartisan support and awaits further consideration by the House Health Care Licenses Committee.