IEPA to Study O’Hare’s Environmental Effect

State Representative Christine Winger’s bill, HB5272 requires the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) to conduct a study of the effects of both noise and the toxic atmospheric impacts around O’Hare Airport.  The results of this study would be presented to the Illinois General Assembly no later than October 31, 2020.

HB5272 recommends that the IEPA pay particular attention in their study to the impacts of air pollution, noise pollution, and the emission of gases and fluids by aircrafts as they can impact the quality of life, health and property of residents who live in close proximity to the flights patterns used by O’Hare Airport.

Representative Winger stressed the importance of this study, as the environmental and noise concerns could only be exacerbated with the upcoming O’Hare transformation project. 

Representative Winger presented the bill to the Transportation committee where it unanimously passed.  Rep. Winger also had Mayor Nunzio Pulice and Deputy Mayor Art Woods from Wood Dale present to testify in support of the bill. 


Upcoming Job Fair

Representative Winger is hosting a Job Fair that will bring over 80 hiring employers to her district.  The job fair will be held on Monday, May 7th at the Itasca Park District, 350 E. Irving Park Road, from 10am-1pm. 

A variety of employers will be at the event to discuss available positions. Skills workshops will also be held throughout the day at the event, which will help candidates in their job search.  The workshops will include job search strategies, interview tips, and how to avoid job scams, and are all free to any attendees.

Representative Winger is committed to getting Illinoisans back to work, and encourages job seekers to dress to impress and bring plenty of resumes to the Job Fair.

“This is an opportunity for residents to easily meet with hiring managers and discuss employment opportunities,” said Winger.  “The goal of the event is to bring as many hiring companies as possible together under one roof, to maximize the opportunities for those seeking jobs.”

Admission to the event is free and it is open to the public.  With questions, contact Rep. Winger’s District Office at (847) 252-9311. To view the event flyer and participating employers, visit www.repwinger.com.

State Representative Christine Winger’s bill, HB5272 requires the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) to conduct a study of the effects of both noise and the toxic atmospheric impacts around O’Hare Airport. The results of this study would be presented to the Illinois General Assembly no later than October 31, 2020.

HB5272 recommends that the IEPA pay particular attention in their study to the impacts of air pollution, noise pollution, and the emission of gases and fluids by aircrafts as they can impact the quality of life, health and property of residents who live in close proximity to the flights patterns used by O’Hare Airport.

Representative Winger stressed the importance of this study, as the environmental and noise concerns could only be exacerbated with the upcoming O’Hare transformation project. 
  
Representative Winger presented the bill to the Transportation committee where it unanimously passed. Rep. Winger also had Mayor Nunzio Pulice and Deputy Mayor Art Woods from Wood Dale present to testify in support of the bill.


House Republicans Call for Independent Redistricting Reform

Illinois House Republican Leader Jim Durkin, along with all members of the House Republican Caucus, has filed a resolution demanding an independent redistricting reform solution.

House Resolution 995 shows broad support for maps to be drawn without regard to incumbency and partisanship, and allows voters the opportunity to choose a candidate based on the issues and policies most important to them. Legislative district maps are redrawn every ten years based on the newest census results.

According to a poll from the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute, 72 percent of Illinois residents, including a majority of both Republicans and Democrats, support the creation of an independent commission to draw legislative district maps. Based on the current legislative calendar, the deadlines for passage are April 27 in the House and May 3 in the Senate.

Illinois House Prepares for Final Week of Consideration for House Bills

The House bill voting deadline will come at the end of the final full week of April on Friday, April 27.   The final House vote on a House bill is called “Third Reading,” and this date is the Third Reading deadline.  April 27 will be the cutoff date for House bills to be favorably considered by the full House in floor debate and sent to the Senate for final passage.  Bills that are not passed by the deadline will be sent to the House Rules Committee, which is the primary pathway under the rules of the House to “table” bills that will no longer be considered. 

Following the House deadline for consideration of its own bills, the focus will shift toward consideration of Senate bills.  The House will reconvene on Tuesday, May 8 to hold committee hearings for testimony and discussion of bills from the Illinois Senate.  Both houses of the Illinois General Assembly will have a four-week period to consider the bills passed by the other chamber and reach final compromises on the difficult issues of 2018.  The House and Senate are scheduled to adjourn on Thursday, May 31.  

“Enjoy Illinois” Maintains List of Illinois Farmers’ Markets. 

As trees and berries bud and blossom, Illinois residents are beginning to look forward to the first fresh-food supplies appearing in Illinois farmers’ markets.  Early foodstuffs for sale in late spring include lettuce, radishes, rhubarb, and many other crops.  Depending on local public health regulations, many farmers’ markets sell refrigerated goods such as eggs and fresh meat.  Farmers’ market operations will multiply throughout Illinois starting on Tuesday, May 1.

One frequently-updated list of places to buy locally-grown produce and locally-made products can be found at the “Enjoy Illinois” website maintained by the state’s Office of Tourism within the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.  Money for this Division and website comes from the State’s tax on hotel and motel rooms and does not come from income or sales tax money.


State Representative Christine Winger is hosting a Job Fair that will bring over 80 hiring employers to her district.  The job fair will be held on Monday, May 7th at the Itasca Park District, 350 E. Irving Park Road, from 10am-1pm. 

A variety of employers will be at the event to discuss available positions. Skills workshops will also be held throughout the day at the event, which will help candidates in their job search.  The workshops will include job search strategies, interview tips, and how to avoid job scams, and are all free to any attendees.

Representative Winger is committed to getting Illinoisans back to work, and encourages job seekers to dress to impress and bring plenty of resumes to the Job Fair.

“This is an opportunity for residents to easily meet with hiring managers and discuss employment opportunities,” said Winger.  “The goal of the event is to bring as many hiring companies as possible together under one roof, to maximize the opportunities for those seeking jobs.”

Admission to the event is free and it is open to the public.  Click here to view participating employers.  With questions, contact Rep. Winger’s District Office at (847) 252-9311. 

State Representative Christine Winger passed an animal welfare measure in the House today.  The bill, HB5477, will require an animal shelter or animal control facility to report the total number of dogs, cats, and other animals taken in by the shelter, the number of animals that leave the shelter and the ending inventory of the shelter at the end of every year.  The inventory will be reported to the Department of Agriculture, and will serve as part of animal shelters’ annual renewal application.

Currently, Illinois shelters and rescues are not required to report to the Department of Agriculture on the numbers of dogs they are importing or where these dogs originate. Rep. Winger’s legislation will require better records to be kept of dogs and cats in our State’s animal shelters.

Representative Winger’s bill will help increase transparency in animal shelters throughout Illinois, and help promote better health and wellness for animals in such shelters.  The legislation had no opposition and moves forward to the Senate for further consideration.

State Representative Christine Winger has advanced a legislative measure to help reduce noise from O’Hare Airport on the surrounding communities, and increase awareness of the airport’s environmental effects. 

Representative Winger has sponsored legislative measures throughout her tenure in the House to advocate for solutions for the neighboring communities who have been dealing with increased noise from the airport, as well as other adverse effects. This week, Rep. Winger presented a House Resolution to urge the Federal Aviation Administration to focus on the environment surrounding O’Hare Airport.

The resolution, HJR110, provides that more money be allocated from the Federal Aviation Administration Passenger Facility Charge. These additional funds would be provided to the FAA to support community airport noise mitigation and community airport air quality monitoring.

This initiative, which was adopted by the Transportation, Roads and Bridges committee this week in Springfield, is another step forward in her effort to fight for O’Hare’s neighbors.
Chicago-Area Homeowners Pay Higher Property Taxes than 93% of U.S 

Homeowners in the Chicago area are paying higher property tax bills, on average, than 93 percent of the country, according to a new report.  The average 2017 tax bill on a single-family home in Lake County was higher than nearly 99 percent of the 1,414 U.S. counties covered by the report, released this week by Attom Data Solutions.

The region's other counties aren't far behind. The average bill in DuPage County is higher than nearly 98 percent, followed by Kane County and McHenry County (both 96 percent), Cook County (94 percent) and Will County (93 percent).

The report covers only counties with 10,000 or more single-family homes. In all, the nation has 3,144 counties, or more than twice the number in Attom's study. The report includes
a county-by-county map of the average property tax bill for single-family homes. Read more in Crain's.

Property taxes are especially high in Illinois due to the state’s overall high-tax political environment. State Representative Christine Winger has supported property tax reforms, and legislative measures such as HB 4066, which have sought to enact comprehensive property tax reforms, including freezes on the levels of property tax “extensions” demanded by local taxing bodies.  However, these measures have all been bottled up in the House Rules Committee by the Democrat majority and have not been allowed to be debated or voted upon.

State Needs Full-Year Balanced Budget 

Speaking to the press on Monday, April 9, Governor Bruce Rauner framed his overall legislative agenda around the State’s need for a balanced, full –year budget for FY19. The Governor’s call came in the context of widespread rumors in Springfield that some people may want a partial budget or a deficit budget for non-policy reasons. 

Illinois’ budget picture has been clouded by the State’s continuing inability to enact permanent reforms to its pension systems. Illinois is legally responsible for $130 billion in unfunded pension liabilities, an expense which must be paid by state taxpayers. The unfunded pension crisis is a key element in the continuing decision by New York’s three major credit-rating agencies to rank Illinois debt at close to “junk bond” level.

Rauner and House Republican Leader Jim Durkin are calling for the State to return the traditional practice of determining and certifying the revenues that the State of Illinois can reasonably expect to receive in FY19, the fiscal year that will begin on July 1, 2018. Once the revenue estimate is determined, the State can develop a budget and spending plan, including appropriations bills, to spend no more money than will come in. Fiduciary experts believe that a repeated demonstration by Illinois that it has returned to sound budget practices will enable the State to slowly retrieve the lost ground that it has suffered in its now-near-junk-level credit rating.    



O’Hare Expansion

Representative Winger recently met with the Commissioner of the Chicago Department of Aviation, Ginger Evans. Alongside fellow lawmakers, Winger attended the meeting to learn more about the O'Hare Airport expansion plan, and the impact on her district.
 
The credit rating agency, Moody's Investors Service, recently labeled the recent O’Hare International Airport expansion plans as a “credit negative.” The project plans to spend an estimated $8.4 billion on expansion and updates, which the credit rating agency believes will increase leverage and airline costs above those of other comparable airports.

A vote by the Chicago City Council to approve the initial spending for the plan has already taken place. That proposal set the initial borrowing for the project at up to $4 billion.

Ongoing Action Against Sexual Harassment and Assault

Members of the Illinois General Assembly, especially female legislators, have begun several separate actions intended to reduce sexual harassment in the Illinois legislature, in Illinois state government, and in the Illinois private sector.

Both the House and the Senate have formed bipartisan Task Forces on Sexual Harassment and Discrimination. As a member of the House Sexual Harassment Task Force, Representative Winger has listened to hours of testimony about cultures of sexual harassment. In one such culture, identified with an Illinois assembly plant owned by the Ford Motor Company, United Auto Workers (UAW) shop stewards have been accused of being sexual harassers and protectors of sexual harassment. A House Resolution was filed, HR 783, which urges a full investigation of the Ford-related allegations.

New laws have been passed by the General Assembly and signed by Gov. Bruce Rauner. Police officers are now required to undergo training to improve sensitivity towards victims of sexual assault. The law requires law enforcement officers to take reports for each allegation of sexual police jurisdiction the alleged incident took place.