Steve New Newsletter

More property tax relief coming for Harlem schools

State Senator Steve Stadelman announced today that Harlem Unit District 122 has received the Illinois State Board of Education Property Tax Relief Grant. The grant gives school districts with high tax rates an opportunity to lower taxes on local property owners with the state replacing the lost tax revenue. Harlem's grant amount will be determined in future District 122 calculations.

“This is another positive step forward in bringing long-term property tax relief to the people of Loves Park and Machesney Park,” Stadelman said. “Property taxes have been – and continue to be – an important issue that needs to be further addressed in the Rockford area, which is why I am pleased to see this grant awarded to Harlem schools.”

More information on the Property Tax Relief Grant and a listing of each eligible school district can be found at

Stadelman supports governor's commitment to ethics reform

Following Gov. JB Pritzker’s delivery of the annual State of the State address this week in Springfield, Senator Stadelman issued this statement:

“The governor laid out a number of proposals that are steps in the right direction. I’m happy to hear that he plans to move forward with ideas from both parties to reduce property taxes. I’m also looking forward to working with the governor on ethics reform that will help restore trust in state government.”

Stadelman also released a video sharing this thoughts on the governor's speech.

Unpaid parking tickets, civil fines will no longer cost drivers their licenses

Tens of thousands of Illinois motorists who lost driving privleges because of unpaid parking tickets or fines for other non-moving violations soon will get their drivers' lienceses reinstated. Gov. JB Pritzker signed Senate Bill 1786, which repeals existing laws that either required or allowed the Illinois Secretary of State to suspend driving privileges for unpaid fines and other violations.

State Senator Steve Stadelman voted to pass the "License to Work Act” in March 2019, but the Illinois House didn't approve until late October during the fall veto session. The repeal goes into effect July 1.

"I've always believed in common-sense legislation," Stadelman said. "If people can't get to work, they're less likely to be able to pay their debt, not to mention buy groceries for their children or see a doctor."

In case you missed me on Facebook ...

 Thank you to the 140 soldiers of the Illinois National Guard's 135th Chemical Company who are being mobilized for service overseas. And thanks to their loved ones who will have to take over responsibilities while they're gone. Governor JB Pritzker addressed the unit during a mobilization ceremony at Harlem Middle School.


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Steve New Newsletter

Governor signs bill to cap insulin copayments

This morning, Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker signed legislation co-sponsored by State Senator Steve Stadelman that will cap out-of-pocket expenses for prescription insulin at $100 per month. The father of a diabetic son, Stadelman worked to help make Illinois only the second state in the nation to limit insulin copayments for consumers who face life-threatening cost increases.

“I have seen the struggles people with diabetes face every day,” Stadelman said, noting that the cap will apply regardless of how much insulin a patient needs. “Diabetes is a lifelong affliction for those who have it. It shouldn’t also be the cause of financial stress for families."

More than 30 million Americans have diabetes, according to the American Diabetes Association. An individual with Type 1 diabetes, a lifelong condition that can begin at birth, will spend an average of $5,705 per year on insulin alone.

“This legislation will provide medical and financial relief to thousands in the Rockford area and across Illinois,” Stadelman said. “I’d like to thank the governor for his commitment to lowering insulin costs throughout the state.”

Senate Bill 667 doesn’t go into effect until January 2021 to give insurance plans a sufficient amount of time to adjust their rates. The cap will apply only to state-regulated commercial insurance plans.

Ethics commission eyes full disclosure of all lobbying in Illinois

Across Illinois on a daily basis, people are likely being paid to lobby governments without ever having to register as lobbyists or disclose any information. While Illinois state government, the city of Chicago and Cook County require lobbyist registration and disclosure, hundreds of units of local government throughout Illinois no such lobbying requirements.

That's the picture that emerged during a hearing before the Joint Commission on Ethics and Lobbying Reform. The commission faces a March 31 deadline for making recommendations for reform to the General Assembly, which formed the commission in response to recent scandals and ongoing federal investigations.

Witnesses detailed lobbyist laws and procedures that are in place in a few jurisdiction, but it was acknowledged that there are no such requirements in the vast majority of cities, counties, school boards, park districts and other government entities. Commissioners were told of a DuPage County requirement that is largely unenforced and other counties that abandoned the issue after court challenges.

An initial hearing focused on rules and protocol for the commision. The second focused on the Lobbyist Registration Act, and the next hearing will concern the Governmental Ethics Act. Those appearing before the commission have included representatives from the Illinois Municipal League, Illinois State Association of County Chairs and the Better Government Association.

Rockford Park District to receive state grant

State Senator Steve Stadelman announced this week the Rockford Park District will receive $275,000 to renovate Keye-Mallquist Park through the Illinois Department of Natural Resources Open Space Land Acquisitions and Development program. Illinois has invested $419 million in 1,765 local park projects since establishing OSLAD in 1987.

“Our local parks provide a great way for all of us to stay active,” Stadelman said. “It’s great to see our park district working hard to pursue available funds."


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Rockford, Harlem schools awarded library grants

State Senator Steve Stadelman announced today that Rockford Public School District 205 and Harlem Community Unit School District 122 are set to receive nearly $25,000 in grants given out by Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White’s School Library Grant program.

“I’m grateful to hear that both Harlem and Rockford schools will receive these grants,” said Stadelman. “Libraries played an important role for me growing up, and additional funding will help our libraries to continue updating their collections for every student to enjoy.”

The grants were awarded based on a per-student formula. Rockford will receive $19,557 with Harlem getting $4,284. School libraries can use the funds to acquire fiction and/or nonfiction books, educational CDs and DVDs, library subscriptions to electronic resources or improve technology by purchasing new computers or improving Wi-Fi connectivity.

Lawmakers seek answers to abuse of seclusion rooms in schools

Members of the joint bipartisan Illinois Senate and House Education Committees met to examine the abuse of seclusion rooms in public schools. The committee heard testimony from the Illinois State Board of Education, the Illinois Association of Social Workers, Equip for Equality and Illinois Education Association, among other key education stakeholders.

The testimony comes in the wake of a report released by the Chicago Tribune and ProPublica Illinois found that school officials disciplined misbehaving children by locking them in seclusion rooms alone, sometimes for hours, a practice found to be harmful to children’s well-being. Gov. JB Pritzker's administration responded by issuing an emerengy ban on the practice, and Senate Bill 2315 was introduced to permanently prohibute use of seclusion rooms as a punitive measure.

During the hearing, lawmakers discussed the need to address the alarming number of reported violations of the use of isolation by certify educators are well-trained in techniques and procedures and supported by proper staffing numbers. The ultimate goal of the committee, lawmakers said, is to keep students safe so they have opportuntities to be successful, which can't happen when misconduct occurs.



Illinois gives students ability to self-administer medication

Students are now allowed to self-administer prescribed medication while at school under a new law supported by State Senator Steve Stadelman. Parental permission must be in place and the medication must be doctor prescribed. Stadelman said the law, which took effect Jan. 1, is designed to give students control of their own health and greater ability to focus on school work while providing parents with peace of mind.

State's minimum wage increase beginning to take effect

Minimum wage earners statewide will see a $1 per hour increase their next paycheck under Illinois' move to increase the hourly mimimage pay rate to $15 by January 2025.

Stadelman backed the increase as a means to move more families toward a living wage and away from public assistance to fill the gap. Single parents making the previous $8.25 an hour qualified for food stamps, Medicaid and often housing benefits.

Illinois' minimum wage is scheduled to increase again to $10 an hour July 1 and another $1 an hour each Jan. 1 from 2021 through 2025. Workers under age 18 will receive more modest increases from $8 to $13 by Jan. 1, 2022.


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On behalf of the Illinois Senate Democratic Caucus, we want to wish you a happy holiday season and a new year filled with health, happiness and prosperity. With the start of the new year comes more than 250 new laws.

Legalization of adult-use cannabis, an increased minimum wage and new regulations on kennels are just a few recently passed measures that take effect Jan. 1, 2020.

Read the full list of new laws here.

Watch our slideshow about the new initiatives here.

In case you missed me on Facebook ...

Thanks to all the veterans groups and volunteers who organized today's free Christmas dinner
for vets at the VFW Post in Loves Park! Hundreds enjoyed a holiday meal and cheer.
They included 93-year-old Harlow Rosborough, who's a World War II veteran!


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Contact Info

Springfield Office:
Senator 34th District
121B Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-8022
District Office:
200 S. Wyman St., Suite 301
Rockford, IL 61101
(815) 987-7557
(815) 987-7529 FAX