The analysis, by the nonpartisan Civic Federation’s Institute for Fiscal Sustainability, contained severe criticism of HB 109. The emergency appropriations bill, pushed through the House earlier this spring session on a partisan roll call, was touted by its sponsors as a “lifeline” to stretched providers of human services. The bill was supposed to substitute for a full-year, constitutionally balanced budget. Analysts for the Civic Federation, however, discovered that the Democrats’ bill would provide only 27.1 cents on the dollar for the human-services funding shortfall based on FY16 spending numbers. 

The majority party’s “lifeline” plan has been proclaimed as providing rescue money to Illinois institutions of higher education. The Institute’s analysts, after running the numbers, stated that the plan would provide only 56.2 cents of the dollars previously allocated by higher education and not paid in FY16. House Republicans opposed the so-called “lifeline” plan as being both ludicrously inadequate to meet its proclaimed purposes and a distraction from the hard work of generating progress toward government reform and a constitutional balanced budget.

From The Jobs Center Of Lake County: Job Search Workshops And Career Events Throughout Lake County In May.


5 Steps to Your Next Job
Monday, May 15 to Friday, May 19 10:00 am to 12:00 pm each day
New Location: College of Lake County, Grayslake, building 4

Attend the 5-day interactive workshop series. This series covers the entire job search process from researching careers to landing your next job. Attend all 5 days to earn a certificate! Register at 847.377.3439 or email elocke@lakecountyil.gov to reserve a seat!
From Lake County: Caterpillar has selected Deerfield as home to its new corporate headquarters. Caterpillar initially plans to relocate approximately 100 employees to its new site immediately, but that number is expected to triple in coming years. The move adds high quality jobs and a new global brand to Lake County’s bustling economy. Caterpillar, a Dow Jones 30 company, joins 11 other Fortune 500 companies that call Lake County home.

Lake County Partners and Lake County join the Village of Deerfield in welcoming Caterpillar to the neighborhood and look forward to working together to ensure that the transition is smooth and successful. Lake County Partners is a 501(c)(3) economic development corporation that works to maintain economic vitality in Lake County by creating and retaining quality jobs, stimulating capital investment, and pursuing economic diversity. Read the full news release.
State Representative Barbara Wheeler (R-Crystal Lake) says despite loud claims to the contrary, House Bill 40 actually removes safeguards for women’s health.

“Proponents of House Bill 40 have repeatedly claimed it improves access to reproductive health care for women, but the facts couldn’t be further from the truth,” said Wheeler. “The legislation actually deteriorates protections for pregnant women by removing basic health care standards, preventing women from being provided basic information, and removing all rights from unborn children. How can any of that be good for women and families?”

Wheeler continued, “Instead, House Bill 282, legislation to ensure pregnant women are protected from unsafe conditions, provided basic information, and to prevent discrimination against unborn children solely because of their race, color, sex, disability, national origin, or ancestry was not even given a committee hearing. We need to reevaluate what it means to protect women and families, because it is clear House Bill 40 isn’t the answer.”
In 2017, Lake County will have roughly $94 million in road projects under construction. About $56 million is carried over from 2016, accounting for two of the big projects underway - the grade separation and widening/reconstruction of Washington Street, and the reconstruction of Deerfield Road. Much of the remaining work planned in 2017 falls under the preservation category, which includes resurfacing projects, culvert replacements and bridge repairs. In total, the Lake County Division of Transportation will have 28 active construction projects this year. View the 2017 Construction Program Map.
A new study, backed by the Illinois Policy Institute, suggests that the cost of workers’ compensation to Illinois taxpayers is at least $1 billion a year. The total includes at least $727 million/year attributable to local governments and school districts, and an estimated $255 million/year for the State of Illinois. The study was released on Wednesday, April 5.

Workers’ compensation costs are paid by taxpayers as the employers of the thousands of Illinois public sector personnel, including school and university personnel. Under existing law, most employers must cover their employees with workers’ compensation insurance to reflect the actuarial future costs of the employment-related health challenges they may face in the future while employed.
A visitor count carried out during the final six months of calendar year 2016 showed 12.9 million visitors setting foot in Chicago’s iconic park, making Millennium Park the most popular single site in the central region of the United States. The park centers around sculptor Anish Kapoor’s internationally recognized abstract stainless-steel sculpture “Cloud Gate.” Millennium Park topped the Midwest’s second-most-visited tourist attraction, Chicago’s Navy Pier.
The counts carried out by the American Community Survey include movements of former Illinoisans through calendar years 2015. In 2015, 34,220 former Illinois residents moved to the Hoosier State.

Indiana currently possesses features that increase its attractions relative to Illinois. Features of Indiana policy include a working state budget, a statewide property tax limitation law, a “triple-AAA” credit rating, and a job-friendly business climate. More Illinois residents are expected to move to Indiana as these policy factors continue to operate.
State Representative Barbara Wheeler (R-Crystal Lake) is sending congratulations to Crystal Lake’s own, LeadingIT. The Crystal Lake based cloud support company has been named a semi-finalist for the James Tyree Emerging Business Leadership Award by the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce. LeadingIT will compete with 12 other semi-finalist in a shark tank style competition, and can be supported by using the #2017TyreeAward hashtag on social media.

“It is great to see one of our own small businesses is a semi-finalist for this prestigious award,” said Wheeler. “Small business is the backbone of our economy, and it’s great to see a small business like LeadingIT, which supports other small businesses, in the running. I hope you’ll join me in cheering them on with the hashtag #2017TyreeAward.”
In an executive order, Gov. Bruce Rauner took steps this week to trigger the elimination of the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency (IHPA). The Agency operates more than 50 historic and cultural-heritage sites throughout Illinois. Sites controlled by IHPA include the Hotel Florence, an architectural keystone of the Pullman National Monument in Chicago; Lincoln’s Tomb and Lincoln’s New Salem in Central Illinois; and the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Cahokia Mounds, east of St. Louis. IHPA was separated out from its former parent, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (then called the Department of Conservation) in 1985.

Under the terms of Rauner’s Executive Order, most of IHPA will be returned to what is now the Department of Natural Resources (IDNR). The consolidation of the two agencies is expected to generate significant administrative savings. A key entity within IHPA, the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, will be granted its own Board of Trustees and autonomy directly under the Office of the Governor.
It is disappointing, but not surprising, that Democrats once again rammed another stopgap spending plan through the House – it’s precisely why Democrats have been unwilling to negotiate with House Republicans on a full, balanced budget.

We have said all along that it was the plan of the Speaker and the majority party to only pass stopgap spending plans and allow our state to simply limp along to get to the next election – and their most recent actions prove that.

Unfortunately, we’ve seen all of this before. Typically, right before a break or deadline, the majority party decides it’s best to play politics and passes a spending plan that never balances or fails to address the real issues of our state so that they can go home and pretend that they’ve done their job.
From NPR Radio:
In a way, it's just one little box on a lengthy college application form. But for many would-be students, that box is more of a stop sign. State Rep. Barbara Wheeler, a Republican from Crystal Lake, sat down with NPR Education Desk reporter Dusty Rhodes to explain why.

"Education has a profound impact on keeping people out of prison and dramatically reducing recidivism. Right now, someone coming out of a corrections facility has a 44% chance of returning to prison, but with a bachelor’s degree that chance drops to 5.6%, and with a master’s degree it drops to 1%. If we can provide more opportunity for people coming out of the corrections system, we won't just be reducing crime and our prison population, we'll be adding contributing members to our economy and society, which benefits everyone," said Wheeler.

Listen to the interview, Click Here.