stadel0424SPRINGFIELD –State Senator Steve Stadelman's (D-Rockford) effort to eliminate conflicts of interest in local elections by giving more control to county election officials today passed the Senate. The measure is in response to a Chicago Tribune Watchdog report that found candidate petitions were denied for reasons such as being bound by a paper clip.

"Currently, we are seeing too much influence by electoral boards in who qualifies to have their names on a ballot," Stadelman said. "These electoral boards are often composed of local elected officials and party leaders who have a vested interest in seeing a candidate's name removed from a ballot."

There have been several cases in past years in which there has been a clear conflict of interest in board rulings regarding ballot challenges. The measure changes who could rule on ballot challenges. Instead of mayors, trustees and school board members ruling on challenges in their own towns, townships and districts, the power will be shifted to a centralized county panel that already hears challenges for other local races.

As a first-time candidate in 2012, Stadelman said he could empathize with people who think of running for office but find the process intimidating because of partisan powers that currently run elections.

"The election process should be as open and easy as possible so that anyone with an interest in seeking office has the capability to do so," he said.

The measure passed the Senate 39-10 and moves to the House for further consideration.

Category: Press Releases

Senator praises announced Rockford road projects

roadworkSPRINGFIELD – Steve Stadelman (D-Loves Park) today praised the Illinois Department of Transportation's announcement of a six-year, $12.62 billion construction plan that includes several million dollars in updates and reconstruction to roads, bridges and railway in Winnebago County. Stadelman released the following statement after the announcement:

"Today's IDOT announcement is great news for the Rockford area, but I would like to hear this type of announcement more frequently," Stadelman said. "These projects make our roads safer while creating thousands of jobs across the state. Investing in infrastructure and making improvements to our roads should be one of the biggest priorities of our state. Passing a capital bill once every decade will not allow us to stay up to date on our infrastructure which is essential in keeping Illinois roads and bridges safe."

The biggest projects in Senator Stadelman's district include:

  • Re-establish passenger service to the Rockford area, including two new stations in Rockford (Alpine Road and South Main Street). Trains will run at least one round-trip daily between Chicago's Union Station and Dubuque. The project is estimated to cost $60 million, and is funded through the Illinois Jobs Now! capital plan.
  • Rockford Multimodal Station. The City of Rockford will design and engineer a new multimodal station that will be built on the site of the former Amtrak station, just south of downtown. The station had not been used since the early 1980s, had fallen into disrepair and was demolished by the city at its own expense in 2011. This multimodal station will serve Amtrak's new Chicago-Rockford-Dubuque corridor with one round-trip train per day. The project is funded by $1.052 million from the state of Illinois and $2.268 in federal funding.
  • One phase of a multi-phased project to rehabilitate Runway 1/19 at Chicago Rockford International Airport at an estimated cost of $4,965,000.

 

For more Rockford-area road projects, click here.

Category: Press Releases

State Sen. Steve Stadelman (D-Loves Park), right, is congratulated by fellow State Senator Dave Syverson on the passage of Senate Bill 1859.SPRINGFIELD – In an effort to move a proposal to make Rockford the Midwest recreational sports destination forward, Senator Steve Stadelman (D- Loves Park) today passed a measure allowing Winnebago County to impose a 2 percent tax on hotel stays. It is estimated that this new tax, which would be shouldered by out-of-town visitors, would generate $13 million for the project.

"Currently in Rockford, hotel guests pay a 12 percent tax at checkout. But surrounding areas like Peoria and Galesburg have a 13 percent tax, and Chicago has a 16.4 percent tax. So Rockford will still be competitive in attracting tourists," Stadelman said.

The Reclaiming First proposal transitions the former Ingersoll building into a riverside indoor sports complex, while making improvements to Sportscore One and Two. The project, Reclaiming First, was introduced in December 2011 and has rallied support from across Winnebago County and the surrounding area.

"The majority, if not all, of the estimated $37.5 million needed in funding for the new project would come from non-local sources including grants, charitable contributions and state funding," continued Stadelman.

Since 2007, Rockford's amateur sports tournaments have dropped 11 percent annually, resulting in $1.4 million loss for the region each year. In an effort to turn this downward trend around, local economic development and city planners, elected officials, business owners and labor leaders collaborated on a proposal that would not only bring back Rockford's declining sports tournaments, but expand resources to make Rockford the amateur sports tournament capital of the Midwest.

The measure now moves to the House for further consideration.

RELATED: VIDEO: Stadelman discusses Reclaiming First

Category: Press Releases

State Senator Steve Stadelman (D-Loves Park) laughs as fellow senators give him a hard time about his first bill.The Illinois Senate has long had a tradition by which a freshman senator introducing his first bill is grilled mercilessly — but in good fun — by colleagues, and State Senator Steve Stadelman (D-Loves Park) was not spared.

On Thursday, Stadelman introduced Senate Bill 2347 —a measure involving the baiting of deer and wild turkey for hunting purposes — and endured several senators' playful questions. State Senator Mike Noland (D-Elgin), as he usually does, opened the questioning.

"Senator, given the language of this bill, I have to believe that you are baiting the entire chamber to make inquiry, are you not?"

"I am baiting you to support this bill, yes," Stadelman said, laughing.

After more tongue-in-cheek scrutiny from Noland, State Senator Gary Forby (D-Benton) joined the fray to ask for some clarification.

"There's some you put in a glass and there's some that you hunt out in the woods," Forby said, "so I want to make sure we have the right wild turkey."

After all the ribbing, Senate Bill 2347 passed the Senate 52-0, and it now heads to the House for consideration.

Category: Press Releases

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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
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