Sullivan: Illinois modernizes 911 funding

911picSPRINGFIELD— An overhaul that modernizes how Illinois funds its 911 call centers was signed into law Monday. State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville) sponsored the proposal, Senate Bill 96, which was a result of a yearlong review of Illinois’ 911 systems.

“There is a patchwork of more than 200 different 911 systems in the state, and there were nine counties without any system whatsoever. Our goal was to create a modern, efficient 911 system that serves both cities and rural communities equally well, and that’s what this overhaul accomplishes,” Sullivan said.

The current, aging system of funding and managing 911 services is based on use of landline phones. As more people have abandoned landlines in favor of cell phones, the state has not kept up to date.

Last year, lawmakers established the bipartisan 911 Services Advisory Board made up of small, medium and large county 911 systems, telephone companies, cell phone providers, regulators, law enforcement groups and lawmakers. After a year of review, the board’s recommendations became SB 96.

The overhaul:
•    Creates a universal funding structure that targets more money to small, rural 911 centers
•    Funds the development of a statewide next generation emergency phone system
•    Strongly encourages 911 providers to consolidate, offering more cost-efficient service
•    Ensures 911 services are available in every county
•    Transfers oversight of 911 to the Illinois State Police from the Illinois Commerce Commission

The legislation also extends the rules governing telecom providers as well as the programs providing equipment for customers with hearing and speech impairments by two years, which were set to expire July 1. It also extends existing TV and phone company licenses for five years.

Senate Bill 96 was signed into law by the governor Monday and took effect immediately. It was approved by both the House and Senate with bipartisan support.

Follow ILSenDems

Facebook Instagram Twitter YouTube

News Releases

IMAGE Bertino-Tarrant highlights extended unemployment benefits, rental assistance
Friday, 07 August 2020
PLAINFIELD — To help families searching for relief amid the COVID-19 pandemic, State Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood) is highlighting...

IMAGE Bennett supports new law protecting front-line workers
Friday, 07 August 2020
CHAMPAIGN – A measure co-sponsored by State Senator Scott Bennett (D-Champaign) that increases public employee benefits, protects retail workers...

IMAGE Castro pleased with expansion of worker protections during pandemic
Friday, 07 August 2020
ELGIN – A measure supported by State Senator Cristina Castro (D-Elgin) meant to expand protections for essential workers during the COVID-19...

IMAGE Crowe highlights state grant awarded to Mississippi Valley Library District
Friday, 07 August 2020
MARYVILLE – To ensure quality education resources for students in the Metro East, State Senator Rachelle Crowe (D-Glen Carbon) is announcing a...

IMAGE Joyce highlights new grant available to support dairy entrepreneurship
Friday, 07 August 2020
PARK FOREST – In an effort to provide financial and technical support to the dairy industry in Illinois, State Senator Patrick Joyce (D-Park...