Sen. Stadelman in committee SPRINGFIELD – A bipartisan proposal championed by State Senators Steve Stadelman (D-Rockford) and Dave Syverson (R-Rockford) to give counties that pass public safety sales tax referendums additional flexibility in directing use of new revenue generated by the tax was signed into law recently.  

The proposal, House Bill 5460, expands the “Special County Retailers’ Occupation Tax for Public Safety, Public Facilities or Transportation” to allow counties to use funding generated by the new tax to fund mental health and substance abuse services.

“Mental health and substance abuse are among the most overlooked issues facing our state, and they both directly impact our public safety,” Stadelman said. “This new law gives local governments another tool to tackle the challenges facing our communities.”

The Special County Retailers’ Occupation Tax for Public Safety, Public Facilities or Transportation was first created as a tax that county boards could levee if approved by local referendum. It can be only be used for purposes related to public safety, public facilities or transportation.

“This gives our local governments additional flexibility to combat drug abuse and effectively help those with mental issues,” said Senator Syverson. “This will enhance public safety and hopefully help many individuals who are currently falling through the cracks.”

The legislation was signed into law Friday, Jan. 4 and was effective upon signing.  

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stadelmansyversonSPRINGFIELD– Winnebago County, along with other counties that pass public safety sales tax referendums in the future, may soon have added flexibility in how they use those funds, under bipartisan legislation passed in the Illinois Senate by State Senators Dave Syverson (R-Rockford) and Steve Stadelman (D-Rockford).

House Bill 4560 expands the “Special County Retailers’ Occupation Tax for Public Safety, Public Facilities, or Transportation” to allow counties to use proceeds from the tax to fund mental health and substance abuse services. The legislation clarifies that counties that have passed the special tax via referendum will be able to use the funds for mental health and substance abuse treatment in areas that affect crime.

"We know that the criminal justice system is impacted by mental health and substance abuse," said Syverson. "Mental health and substance abuse treatment can help reduce crime and increase public safety, so I think it is a natural fit to make sure local governments have the flexibility to use these funds to treat those issues."

"Mental health and substance abuse are among the most overlooked issues facing our state," said Stadelman. "This is a common-sense, bipartisan measure that gives local governments another tool in the toolbox to treat those struggling with these challenges.”
 
The Special County Retailers’ Occupation Tax for Public Safety, Public Facilities, or Transportation, as first created, is a tax that county boards may levee, if approved by a referendum, to be used exclusively for public safety, public facilities, or transportation purposes. The tax applies to what is considered to be tangible personal property at retail, but excluding property that is required to be titled or registered with the state.

The legislation passed unanimously through the Senate Revenue Committee on Wednesday and then was approved by the full chamber on Thursday.

“My hope is that this legislation will help treat many individuals who are currently falling through the cracks while enhancing public safety for everyone,” said Syverson.

“I look forward to continuing to work across the aisle to find solutions to the challenges facing our state,” said Stadelman.

Category: Press Releases

Stadelman2014In many school districts, students who are unable to pay for lunch can be stigmatized with a special wristband or handstamp, and in some cases even denied lunch.

To stop this practice known as “lunch shaming” in Illinois, State Senator Steve Stadelman (D-Rockford) sponsored and passed Senate Bill 2428 through the Illinois General Assembly. Yesterday, the governor signed the proposal into law.

“This is a cruel practice that blames kids for mistakes made by their parents,” Stadelman said. “It’s our responsibility to ensure that all students, no matter their background or parents’ income level, have an opportunity to eat.”

Under Stadelman’s proposal, every school will be required to provide a meal to a student that requests one. While the school can contact the parents directly to request they pay for the child’s lunch, they are prevented from throwing the meal out, forcing the student to wear a wristband or otherwise stigmatizing them. If the school district is owed at least $500 by a student’s parents and they have made a reasonable effort to collect the debt, the district can request the comptroller withhold tax refunds to parents to pay off the debt.

The proposal will go into effect immediately.

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Springfield Office:
Senator 34th District
121A Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-8022
 
District Office:
200 S. Wyman St.
Rockford, IL 61101
(815) 987-7557
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