Legislative Update: October 30, 2017

Lawmakers Override Several Vetoes during First Week of 2017 Veto Session
Lawmakers spent time in Springfield last week reconsidering bills that received a partial or full veto by the Governor this year. In all, 11 bills were successfully overridden last week, while three failed to garner the 71 required votes. Additional bills will be reconsidered during the second week of veto session November 7-9.

One highlight of last week’s bill action was the veto override of an equal pay bill that originally cleared the House in the Spring in a 91-24 vote. At its core, HB 2462 prohibits employers from asking employees about their salaries at previous positions. It received a total veto by the Governor, but his veto was overridden on Wednesday in an 80-33 vote. I was proud to support the override. As you may recall, when this bill was originally considered in April, I was vocal with my support of closing the gender wage gap. You can hear my comments made at that time by clicking here.

In addition to HB 2462, veto action was taken in the House on the other following bills:
  • HB 302: Unclaimed life insurance (override successful)
  • HB 688: Firefighter/police pension transfer service credit (override successful)
  • HB 732: Residential roofing repairs (override successful)
  • HB 1797: International Port Authority Debt (override successful)
  • HB 2622: Creates a state-sponsored workers’ compensation insurance company (override failed)
  • HB 2778: Fire protection district to annex under ETS (override successful)
  • HB 2977: Must teach cursive writing in schools (override successful)
  • HB 3143: Adds teen treatment providers to the Prompt Payment Act (override successful)
  • HB 3216: Requirements on third-party contracting by the State (override failed)
  • HB 3298: Reimbursement of the substitute teacher licensure fee (override successful)
  • HB 3419: Prohibits expatriate entities from doing business with the State (override successful)
  • HB 3649: State agency financial reports to the Comptroller (override successful)
  • SB 1905: Prohibits local right to work zones/creates Collective Bargaining Freedom Act (Override failed)
Olsen to Partner with Leader Durkin and Senator Curran on Veterans Expo and Blood Drive
Our veterans often face unique challenges when they return from active duty, so I am proud to once again be partnering with a few of my legislative colleagues for a free veterans expo and blood drive on Saturday, November 4. The event will bring together 30 agencies that can provide assistance and address their specific needs. This year’s expo will take place from 9:00 AM until 12:30 PM at the American Legion Post 80, 4000 Saratoga Avenue in Downers Grove. 

Experts from across the state will be available to inform the veteran attendees and their loved ones of important resources and services available to them. Just a few of the important services that will be available at the expo include flu shots, pneumonia shots, blood pressure screenings, counseling and TDAP, passport application, student assistance and job opportunities. A full list of passport requirements can be found at ilhousegop.org.

Blood donations will be taken at the event from 9:00 AM until 1:00 PM. If interested in donating blood, veterans or their loved ones are encouraged to call LifeSource at (877) 543-3768 to schedule an appointment. For more information about this free event, please call my office at (630) 737-0504.

Rep. Olsen Joins Local Dignitaries for Rexnord Expansion Groundbreaking
It was my pleasure earlier this month to participate in the groundbreaking ceremony for Rexnord Industries, which is building a new manufacturing facility and aerospace headquarters in Downers Grove. The new 248,000 square foot facility will be located near its existing home in the Ellsworth Business Park. Construction is expected to be complete in 2019, and once the new building is finished the old building will be redeveloped into parking for the company’s 310 employees. Thank you for choosing Downers Grove for your expansion!

“Spooktacular Saturday” in Downers Grove Draws Large Crowd
The weather was perfect for this year’s "Spooktacular Saturday," held last weekend in Downers Grove. The annual event included the Helping Girls Navigate Adolescence (HGNA) pancake breakfast, the Downers Grove Historical Society Living Cemetery, and the Halloween window painting sponsored by the Rotary Club of Downers Grove. The celebration continued this past weekend with the Downers Grove Lions Club costume parade and trick-or-treating at downtown businesses.

I had a great time at the HGNA pancake breakfast and was proud to serve as a sponsor for the event. HGNA grew out of parent workshops on girl bullying and adolescent development in 2004 and 2005. It is a non-profit organization devoted to providing children and their parents the tools needed to navigate adolescence with confidence, resilience and kindness. HGNA is a leading provider of educational and skill-building programs, events and resources offered in collaboration with our schools and communities.

Rep. Olsen Serves as “Principal for a Day” at Herrick Middle School
This morning I had an opportunity to step into the shoes of a school principal and experience a day in the life of a top school administrator at Herrick Middle School. The “Principal for a Day” program is offered through the Illinois Principals Association, and the experience provided me with a unique glimpse into the lives that principals live in their schools every day. 

The “Principal for a Day” program, in place since 2004, is a statewide initiative to provide state and federal elected officials with an opportunity to observe, interact, and serve as an administrator in schools within their legislative districts. I had some great conversations with staff members and enjoyed talking with students about government and the importance of being an involved citizen. Thank you to Principal Mr. Matt Neustadt, the students and staff of Herrick Middle School for a wonderful experience!

Local Fire District President Recognized at Transform Illinois Conference
The 3rd annual Transform Illinois conference, held last week at the Oak Brook Com Ed Commercial Center, celebrated innovation in local government - including recognizing Brent Frank, Board President of the Lisle-Woodridge Fire District! Thanks to ComEd for hosting this important gathering of local leaders, and congratulations to Brent Frank for his valuable service to the Woodridge area!

Olsen Attends Dedication Ceremony
Earlier this month I joined Northern Seminary President Dr. William Shiell for a wonderful service dedicating their new location in Lisle, where they will continue their long tradition of educating the next generation of church leaders. Northern Seminary was founded in 1913 and relocated to Lisle from their previous location in Lombard.

Plans Unveiled for Illinois Innovation Network
Plans were recently unveiled for an Illinois Innovation Network (IIN) to help ignite the state’s economy through a $1.2 billion network of research universities, businesses, and public sector partners focused on the development of solutions in computing and big data, advanced materials, food and agriculture, and biosciences and health. The network will help ensure a knowledge-based, 21st century economy in Illinois where discovery and innovation are the focal points. The plan is to nurture the inventors and entrepreneurs of tomorrow by allowing them to hone their talents in Illinois. The network will be led by the University of Illinois System, with universities in Urbana-Champaign, Chicago and Springfield and satellite campuses in Peoria and Rockford. The University of Chicago and Northwestern University will be inaugural partners.

Olsen Joins Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts for Local Events and Ceremonies
Last weekend I had the honor of congratulating Dylan Flowers on achieving the rank of Eagle Scout. I also shared a few words with Dylan and the assembled Scouts, family, and friends on the importance of continuing to serve in our community. He is an impressive young man who will undoubtedly be a great leader as an adult.
I also recently had the opportunity to speak to a group of Cub Scouts in Bolingbrook about how laws are made and the three branches of government. I always enjoy hearing what is on the minds of these future leaders, and appreciated their questions and enthusiasm!

Illinois Completes $6 Billion Bond Sale to Pay Down Backlog of Unpaid Bills
The State sold $4.5 billion in general obligation bonds last week to pay down a portion of Illinois' roughly $15 billion backlog of unpaid bills. Proceeds from last Wednesday's bond sale, together with the proceeds from the $1.5 billion Series 2017ABC general obligation bonds that were sold competitively the prior week, will be used to help cut the State's backlog approximately in half by June 2018.

The State received orders from more than 100 institutional investors. The State locked in a combined cost of borrowing of 3.5 percent on the State's $6 billion in general obligation bonds issued to reduce the State's backlog. This is a significant reduction in the carrying cost of the State's backlog obligation, a portion of which has been accruing late payment interest of 9 to 12 percent.

Rep. Olsen Provides Legislative Update to Lisle Chamber
I was glad to join my friends at the Lisle Area Chamber of Commerce recently to give an update on the happenings in Springfield and how current and pending legislation impacts local businesses and residents. Thanks to Executive Director Jill Eidukas and all the members for the invitation!

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