Of the bills considered in the 101st General Assembly Lame Duck Session, perhaps the most attention was placed upon the Black Caucus Four Pillars of reform. Of them, three passed and one did not. All are listed below.
Black Caucus Pillars:
Criminal Justice Reform (HB3653)
• Abolishes the requirement of posting cash bail; strengthens judicial oversight of bond hearings while insuring that no person is held simply because they have no access to cash.
• Strengthening the requirements to use force in various situations. Contrary to some statements, it does not ban the use of force.
• Blanket ban on chokeholds except in certain circumstances.
• Police residency requirements for communities over 100,000 populations.
• Creates a certification process for local police officers
• Creates the Qualified Immunity Task Force to review
• Establishes a duty to intervene to stop another peace office from using unauthorized force.
• Establishes a duty to render aid and request emergency assistance.
• Bans the purchase of military equipment by law enforcement.
• Establishes a statewide body camera mandate to be rolled out over 4 years.
• Body camera footage cannot be altered or redacted by the recording officer.
• Encourages the use of co-responder model of crisis response.
• Reforms to crowd control and use of rubber bullets and tear gas.
• Creates a misconduct offense if a peace officer misrepresents facts, withholds knowledge of misrepresentation or purposefully does not use a body camera to prevent activity from being recorded.
• Expanded training for use of force and crisis intervention.
• Detainment rights - requires individual in police custody be allowed free of charge three phone calls within 3 hours.
• Counsel for juveniles under 18 years old is required during interrogation if accused of murder or sexual offense.
• Establishes statewide services for officer’s mental health.
Education Equity (HB2170) (Portions subject to appropriation)
• Requirement of two years of laboratory science and a foreign language to graduate high school.
• Requires the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) to annually assess all public school students entering kindergarten.
• Extends early intervention services to three-year-olds whose birthday falls between May 1 and August 21.
• Requires ISBE and designated state agencies to report on the racial and ethnic demographics of the participants for each major program administered by the Board of each designated department.
• Beginning with the next academic year, requires that every public high school provide access to students to each course identified by the Illinois Board of Higher Education (IBHE) for admittance to a state university.
• Requires a school district's accelerated placement policy to allow for the automatic enrollment, in the following school term, of a high school student into the next most rigorous level of advanced coursework offered by the high school if the student meets or exceeds state standards in English language arts, mathematics, or science on a state assessment.
• Directs the Illinois P-20 Council to submit recommendations for learning recovery actions for public school students in the wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Economic Development (SB1480, SB1608, SB1792, SB1980)
• Makes it a civil rights violation for an employer to use a conviction record in an employment decision (except in specifically outlined examples in statute). Currently only applies to arrest records.
• Under the Predatory Loan Act places a 36 percent interest rate cap on consumer loans, including payday and car title loans.
• Requires certain corporations to submit the same data to the Secretary of State who will publish the data on race, gender and ethnicity for each corporation on its website.
• Requires private businesses with 100 or more employees to receive an "Equal Pay Certificate."
• Creates the Commission on Equity and Inclusion to review state of Illinois procurement practices.
• Increases the State's goals for awarding state contracts to businesses owned by minorities, women or people with disabilities from 20% to 30%.
• Establishes the African Descent Citizens Reparations Commission.
• Creates the Illinois Community Reinvestment Act covering designated financial institutions chartered or incorporated under Illinois state law. Each covered institution has an obligation to meet the financial services needs of the communities in which it is located. State agencies and public institutions of higher learning shall annually submit a report, categorized by both race and gender, specifying the respective wage earnings of employees.
• Requires a Disparity Study for Black Farmers.
• Creates the Cannabis Equity Commission.
• Requires a Beauty Supply Industry Disparity Study.
• Increases housing access for those with criminal records.
NOTE: An important provision of this pillar was lead water line replacement provisions. Unfortunately during the last days of the session this provision was removed and not passed. It would have addressed: Funding for replacement of lead lines, Timeline/plan flexibility, prohibitions on partial lead service line replacements and additional regulations for the process.
Health Care (was not passed by both houses). HB3840 and SB558
Bills unrelated to the Black Caucus Agenda
In addition the following bills were also passed and sent to the Governor for consideration:
HB1559 Collective bargaining changes for Chicago:
With respect to the Chicago school district only, collective bargaining between an educational employer and an exclusive representative of its employees may include decisions to determine the length of the work and school day and the length of the work and school year.
HB3360 Prejudgment interest on Personal injury lawsuits.
Currently interest accrues only after judgment on a lawsuit. This bill, if signed, will cause interest to accrue as of the date of injury. The stated purpose of the bill was to discourage defense counsel and their clients from dragging out lawsuits.
SB54 Home liquor delivery
Allows for delivery of alcoholic liquor to the purchaser’s home for use or consumption.
HB4276 COVID-19 Relief
Amends the Public Employee Disability Act, the Chicago Police and Chicago Firefighter Articles of the Illinois Pension Code, the Workers' Occupational Diseases Act regarding COVID-19 related injuries and illnesses. It extends protections and benefits for various categories of persons.
HB2488 Amends the Illinois Controlled Substances Act.
Provides that the Bureau of Pharmacy and Clinical Support Systems shall establish a form to allow electronic health record systems to certify the identity of a third party that will provide access to the Prescription Information Library.
HB156 extended a sunset clause on Transportation Network Providers Act.
HB377 makes technical amendments to the Illinois Human Rights act.
HB570 extended TIF provisions for particular communities.
HB2461 Authorizes purchase of specific land in the state and quick take provisions for certain properties.
Bills of note that did not pass during the lame Duck Session:
Resolution of the Future Energy Jobs Act Solar Cliff
Although significant attempts were made to resolve the ending of state incentives for solar energy projects, unfortunately this legislation did not get called for a final vote during Lame Duck Session. The proposals would have corrected the expiration of State incentives for small solar installations (“solar cliff”) and included a new seed funding program that would ensure BIPOC businesses and community organizations can access new renewable energy projects in environmental justice communities.
SB3066 COVID-19 Housing Bill
This bill would have taken action to extend moratoriums on evictions and residential foreclosures. In addition it would have aided the Federal Emergency Rental Assistance program; created accessibility and transparency; and created a process for further prioritizing applicants for financial assistance and housing stability services. It also contained provisions for: the sealing of court files related to such evictions.
SB1199 Decoupling and revenue package
This was a complex tax provision requested by the Governor to alleviate likely budget shortfalls.
SB 3071 Ethics bill
This bill would have imposed stricter requirements on legislators becoming lobbyists during and after their terms and additional ethics proposals.
HB2267 Chicago elected school board
The bill would have made the Chicago School Board an elected board similar to all other school boards in the state.
HB 122 Cannabis clean up
The bill would have resolved various components of the rollout of cannabis licenses and operations.
HB 3994 Election bill
The bill would have addressed various issues relating to elections including vote by mail, curbside voting, etc.
HB3469 SA#4 Remote legislating
The bill would have allowed for the General Assembly to function remotely during a crisis.