Olsen Senior Fair Scheduled for September 20
This week on Thursday, September 20, I am partnering with the Downers Grove Park District’s Active Adult Center for a free Senior Fair. The event will be held from 10:00 AM until 1:00 PM at the Park District’s Lincoln Center Gymnasium, 935 Maple Avenue in Downers Grove. Seniors and those who help care for them can visit more than 20 booths staffed by agencies that assist seniors. They can also register for a chance to win a door prize. In addition, helpful guides, literature and other resources from state, county and local government agencies will be distributed. No pre-registration is necessary. For additional information, please contact my office at (630) 737-0504. 

Olsen Joins DuPage Area Lawmakers to Help Loaves & Fishes with Collection of Personal Care Items
This month I am partnering with several of my DuPage County Republican colleagues to assist Loaves & Fishes with the collection of personal care items. Loaves & Fishes is a not-for-profit food pantry that feeds up to 800 DuPage County families per week. At Loaves & Fishes, families in need can visit the pantry and shop for free in a grocery store-like setting. Unfortunately, the pantry is experiencing a shortage of personal care items to supplement the food staples families need. Items in short supply right now include: 
  • diapers and wipes 
  • laundry detergent 
  • toilet paper 
  • shampoo 
  • toothpaste 
  • household cleaning products 
My legislative office at 633 Rogers Street, Suite 108 in Downers Grove is one of nine legislative offices in DuPage County that are serving as drop-off locations for Loaves & Fishes donations. While my general office hours are 10:00 am to 3:00 pm Monday through Friday, my staff and I are often out of the office tending to legislative business and attending local events, so please call prior to stopping by. Click here to view a full list of drop-off locations for this collection event. 

Olsen Sits for Interview to Discuss First Term in General Assembly
I recently sat down for a radio interview, where I discussed how my high school and college involvements led me toward public service life, my first term in the Illinois House of Representatives, and how bipartisanship has been the key to my success in getting bills passed. We also discussed my legislative and personal goals for the future. Click here to listen to the full interview. 

September is Preparedness Month in Illinois
In the case of a public emergency in this area, are you prepared? Would you know how to reach your family and how to remain safe? During closing ceremonies of the 2018 Illinois Emergency Management Agency Training Summit in Springfield, Governor Rauner proclaimed September as Preparedness Month in Illinois. Illinois designation aligns with National Preparedness Month. 

The theme for this year’s National Preparedness Month campaign is "Disasters Happen. Prepare Now. Learn How."  The state is partnering with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in the month-long campaign that encourages Americans to take simple steps to prepare for emergencies in their homes, businesses and communities. Having a plan that includes where to go and how to communicate during disasters, as well as an emergency supply kit, could save the lives of your family, friends, neighbors and employees.

The Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) offers disaster preparedness information on the Ready Illinois website (www.Ready.Illinois.gov), a one-stop resource for detailed information about what to do before, during and after disasters. During large-scale disasters, IEMA uses the Ready Illinois website, Facebook and Twitter pages to provide critical information about the incident, including shelter locations, road closures, safety information, photos and more. For more information about emergency and disaster preparedness, visit ready.illinois.gov.

9/11 Remembrance Ceremony Recognizes 17th Anniversary of Terrorist Attack
On September 11, I joined first responders and public officials in Lisle for a 9/11 commemoration ceremony at the Fire District. As we paid tribute to those who tragically lost their lives and the thousands of people who emerged as heroes in the days and weeks that followed the attacks, I was reminded of how that horrible day brought the country together; how people put their differences aside and embraced each other. 

Healthy Revenue Numbers Posted in August
The new numbers reflect taxes paid into our State through key State revenue pipelines in August 2018. The figures were posted recently by the Committee on Government Forecasting and Accountability (CGFA), the nonpartisan budget watchdog arm of the Illinois General Assembly. Measured on a year-over-year basis, August 2018 personal income tax revenues were up $127 million, sales tax revenues were up $54 million, and corporate income tax revenues rose $35 million.

The Illinois private sector makes goods and services that are sold all over the world. After studying current Illinois exports, CGFA summarized the picture in this month’s revenue report. Illinois residents may be surprised to learn that facilities within our State sell almost $6 billion worth of goods and services every month to buyers outside our American borders. The U.S. dollar is an expensive currency for many of our international customers, and so many of these Illinois exports are not commodities: they are specialty goods and services produced by highly trained Illinois workers who are working as team members for an enterprise that enjoys a global high or dominant market share.

Illinois Launches College and Career Planning Tool
For the first time, Illinois high school students will have access to data that shows how much they might earn if they graduate from colleges and universities located in the state. 

ILCollege2Career.com, unveiled at Governor Bruce Rauner’s quarterly Children’s Cabinet meeting this month, links employment and higher education data so users can compare the relative earnings value of college degrees. The data is broken down by schools and area of study, so that students can compare the earnings potential of business degrees, for example, from different public and private institutions in the state.

The idea is to help students and parents make college decisions based on an evaluation of real-time successes of a school’s graduates, in addition to other factors such as cost, average debt levels, and likelihood to graduate on-time. The tool will also show the benefits of investing in higher education, as it demonstrates how connected our thriving higher education system is to the workforce development of our state.

ILCollege2Career.com is the product of collaboration between the Governor’s Office, Illinois Board of Higher Education (IBHE), the Illinois Community College Board (ICCB), the Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC), and the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES).

The launch of the web site follows a number of recent education achievements in the state including:
  • $25 million allocated for higher education in Fiscal Year 2019 and merit-based scholarship program AIM HIGH to encourage Illinois’ best and brightest high school grads to stay in Illinois for college 
  • A law that requires the ISAC to develop a three-year pilot program to better educate students on loan amounts, repayment and interest; 
  • A new law that creates a task force to study how student college or career interest data can be collected and shared between high schools and colleges so higher education institutions will be able to enhance their programs and services to support the specific needs of their incoming student body; 
  • Revisions to the Monetary Award Program (MAP) to prioritize access for existing grant recipients, and; 
  • Strengthened degree-advising services that make it easier for students to transfer credits between Illinois schools. 
Treasurer Launches Money Match Program
In Illinois, the State Treasurer is tasked with safeguarding unclaimed property, such as unpaid life insurance benefits, forgotten bank accounts and unused rebate cards. Illinois holds more than $2 billion in unclaimed property. The State Treasurer is legally required to get the property to the rightful owners no matter how long it takes for them to come forward.

The Treasurer’s Office wants to make sure you know about a new program, Money Match, that was recently launched to return unclaimed property to Illinois residents more quickly and efficiently. This program was made possible by legislation passed by the Illinois General Assembly last year. The Treasurer’s Office is now authorized to work with the Illinois Department of Revenue to match the names of unclaimed property owners with recent tax return records.

Using this proactive matching process, the Treasurer’s Office will automatically return lost money to qualifying Illinois taxpayers without the need to file a claim or gather paperwork. The property must be $2,000 or less in cash with only one owner. If a recent mailing address is identified and confirmed, the person will receive a letter announcing the amount and source of the money and notifying the recipient to look for a check in the mail.

Money Match’s goal is to return more money, more quickly to Illinois taxpayers. Residents will start to receive notification letters as soon as this month. The program expects to return $12 million statewide in the coming weeks. This new matching program comes on the heels of a record-breaking year for ICash of 116,000 successful claims returning more than $180 million in unclaimed property to individuals, businesses and non-profits in Illinois.

Individuals can still search the state treasurer’s database for their name or the name of their business or non-profit at www.illinoistreasurer.gov/ICASH.

Olsen Celebrates DarienFest
Every September I look forward to attending DarienFest, and this year was no exception. While the weather did not cooperate fully, we were able to enjoy some sunshine. This event takes place annually at Darien Community Park. I am shown in this photo with a variety of people from the Darien community.

Opioid Prescriptions Declining in Illinois
The legal dispensing of opioid pain management medications, including OxyContin, declined in 2017. The data was seen as evidence that steps are being taken to reduce opioid abuse in Illinois. In many cases of opioid abuse and addiction, a patient is introduced to opioids through the legitimate use of prescription painkillers. Physicians who provide treatment to persons with one-time pain management needs, such as post-operative patients, are being taught to prescribe lower doses of opioids in smaller quantities. Programs approved by the Illinois General Assembly are being used to improve anti-opioid continuing education efforts for all medical caregivers, including physicians and pharmacists.

This recently-released Illinois opioid data came from the statewide Prescription Monitoring Program, a database monitor operated by the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS). The database monitor has been recommended to medical care providers since the 1970s, but in 2017 the General Assembly changed the law to mandate prescribing physicians to enroll in the Program. Work done by the Illinois General Assembly, with the consultative input of the Illinois State Medical Society, now ensures that Illinois professional regulators and law enforcement have high-quality, universal data to use to fight against opioid drug abuse and addiction.

Local Moose Lodge Hosts International Supreme Governor
Moose International Supreme Governor Harry Johnston visited Downers Grove Moose Lodge No. 1535 recently to celebrate the Downers Grove chapter being named top lodge in Illinois. I was glad to join in the festivities with Mayor Martin Tully and Commissioners Marge Earl & Nicole Walus. 

Renewed Interest in Issue of Texting while Driving
A recent survey of Illinois high school students shows that an alarming 42% of Illinois teens admit to texting while driving. This number is even higher than the 38% nationwide teen average who admits to the same offense. While texting-while-driving is banned in Illinois, many believe that the law is not fully enforced. The Illinois General Assembly enacted legislation, signed by Governor Bruce Rauner in August 2018, to increase penalties for the violation of texting while driving. Under the new law, first-time convictions for texting-while-driving will be classified as moving violations and, like other moving violations, will be placed on the offender’s permanent driving record. Three or more repeat offenses of texting while driving could lead to the suspension of a driver’s license.

Rep. Olsen Supports Grove Foundation Annual Golf Outing
The Grove Foundation recently hosted their annual golf outing at the Downers Grove Golf Club. I was glad to make time to stop by and visit with the golfers and others supporting the event. This organization is a not-for-profit foundation that enriches the lives of community members by identifying, supporting and promoting recreational, educational and community experiences through innovative and collaborative efforts. I am shown in this picture with Cheryl Prescott, Mary French and Mary Ellen Young.
Representative David S. Olsen recently sat down for an interview about his life leading up to service in the General Assembly, and how bipartisanship is at the center of all of his early successes as a lawmaker. Click here to listen to the interview.
Seniors from the 81st Legislative House District are invited to attend a free Senior Fair sponsored by State Representative David S. Olsen (R-Downers Grove) and the Downers Grove Park District’s Active Adult Center on Thursday, September 20. The fair will take place from 10:00 AM until 1:00 PM at the Park District’s Lincoln Center Gymnasium, 935 Maple Avenue in Downers Grove.

Seniors and those who help care for them can visit more than 20 booths staffed by organizations and agencies that assist seniors. They can also register for a chance to win a door prize. In addition, helpful guides, literature and other resources from state, county and local government agencies will be available.

“We are bringing several organizations, businesses and medical professionals together under one roof,” said Olsen. “These professionals focus on improving the lives of senior citizens, so I hope all seniors and their caregivers take advantage of this opportunity to meet and talk with a variety of people who offer services tailored to the needs of seniors.”

The following groups, agencies and State departments will have booths at the event: AARP Driver Safety, Illinois Area on Aging, the Attorney General, Bentron Financial Group, the Illinois Comptroller, Condo, Townhouse, and Homeowner Associations, the Citizens Utility Board (CUB), Downers Grove Library, Downers Grove Park District, Downers Grove Township, Downers Grove Village, DuPage County, Good Samaritan Health & Wellness Center, Heritage Woods Retirement Community, State of Illinois, Seniors Helping Seniors, Senior Living Experts, Soarella, the State Treasurer and Wellsprings.

No pre-registration is necessary. For additional information, please contact Rep. Olsen’s office at (630) 737-0504.
Eleven Olsen Bills Signed into Law During 2018 Spring Session
The legislative success I achieved this year is a direct result of my commitment to bipartisanship in Springfield. I have worked hard to cultivate respectful and productive relationships with lawmakers on both sides of the aisle. During the 2018 Session, I filed a comprehensive legislative agenda that protects taxpayers, enhances government transparency, improves the Illinois business climate, increases protections for vulnerable segments of our population, assists our military families, and enhances public safety. I am pleased to announce that the Governor has now signed all eleven of my bills that reached his desk into law.

These new laws include:
  • HB 2222 (P.A. 100-0746): Provides consistency with regard to residency requirements for elected officials in Illinois, specifically addressing oversight within the Public Library Act. 
  • HB 4805 (P.A. 100-0640): Reduces costs to specific Illinois businesses, and protects consumers who use money transmitting services like Western Union and PayPal by bringing the Surety Bond requirement for businesses more in line with the actual costs associated with risk. 
  • HB 4867 (P.A. 100-0659): Adds a new layer of transparency to the caseloads of guardians of adults with disabilities by requiring potential guardians to disclose to the court the number of adults with disabilities over which the potential guardian is currently appointed. If the court determines that an individual is appointed guardian over more than five adults with disabilities, the court is required to notify the Guardianship and Advocacy Commission within one week. 
  • HB 5031 (P.A. 100-0955): Improves the efficiency of state government by removing a duplicative reporting requirement between state agencies and human service providers. 
  • SB2543 (P.A. 100-0793): Promotes government consolidation and taxpayer savings by simplifying the process for dissolution of a mosquito abatement district. 
  • SB 2587 (P.A. 100-0930): Improves public health and saves Illinoisans’ money by adding dentists to the list of health care professionals who can perform over-the-phone “tele-health” services in Illinois. 
  • SB 2658 (P.A. 100-0821): Assists military personnel and their families while addressing the state’s teacher shortage by increasing the period of time during which a provisional educator endorsement is valid to three years for a service member or spouse who is certified in another state. 
  • SB 2721 (P.A. 100-0979): Improves state government efficiency by streamlining the process of regulatory oversight and aligning the licensing process of financial technical (fintech) companies by entering Illinois into a newly-created interstate compact with Georgia, Kansas, Massachusetts, Tennessee, Texas and Washington. 
  • SB 2826 (P.A. 100-0714): Strengthens and updates the Illinois Human Rights Act and protections for women by clarifying that "order of protection status" includes status as a person protected under any order of protection existing in Illinois law.
  • SB 3134 (P.A. 100-0730): Addresses flooding issues in the suburbs by creating a commission to study flood control practices and conduct a survey in DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry and Will counties. 
  • SB 3236 (P.A. 100-0807): Improves transparency by requiring a school district’s administrative costs be reflected on school report cards.
Olsen Joins Celebration for New Eagle Scout
I recently had the opportunity to join members of the community as Boy Scout Troop 95 celebrated its newest Eagle Scout, Theodore Schneider. The Eagle Court of Honor was held at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church in Downers Grove. It is always an honor for me to recognize these outstanding young leaders. Congratulations Theodore! 

Olsen Senior Fair Scheduled for September 20
On Thursday, September 20, I am partnering with the Downers Grove Park District for a free Senior Fair. The event will be held from 10:00 AM until 1:00 PM at the Park District’s Lincoln Center Gymnasium, 935 Maple Avenue in Downers Grove. Seniors and those who help care for them can visit more than 20 booths staffed by agencies that assist seniors. They can also register for a chance to win a door prize. In addition, helpful guides, literature and other resources from state, county and local government agencies will be distributed. No pre-registration is necessary. For additional information, please contact my office at (630) 737-0504.

Olsen Joins DuPage Area Lawmakers to Help Loaves & Fishes with Collection of Personal Care Items
This month I am partnering with several of my DuPage County Republican colleagues to assist Loaves & Fishes with the collection of personal care items. Loaves & Fishes is a not-for-profit food pantry that feeds up to 800 DuPage County families per week. At Loaves & Fishes, families in need can visit the pantry and shop for free in a grocery store-like setting. Unfortunately, the pantry is experiencing a shortage of personal care items to supplement the food staples families need. Items in short supply right now include: 
  • diapers and wipes 
  • laundry detergent 
  • toilet paper 
  • shampoo 
  • toothpaste 
  • household cleaning products 
My legislative office at 633 Rogers Street, Suite 108 in Downers Grove is one of nine legislative offices in DuPage County that are serving as drop-off loction for Loaves & Fishes donations. While my general office hours are 9:00 am to 3:00 pm Monday through Friday, my staff and I are often out of the office tending to legislative business and attending local events, so please call prior to stopping by. Click here to view a full list of drop-off locations for this collection event.

Grant Money for Downers Grove’s Historic Blodgett House Released for Payment
The Blodgett House in Downers Grove is a historical gem in our community. On Friday I learned that State funds awarded to the Downers Grove Park District for interpretive signs for the Blodgett House that have been delayed since 2009 have been authorized for release by the Governor’s Office of Management & Budget (GOMB). The funds were initially awarded as part of the Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity’s (DECO) Illinois Jobs Now! Capital Plan, but only a portion of the funds were ever delivered. 

The Downers Grove Park District was awarded a $15,000 grant in 2009, but the money never arrived. They eventually received $3,750 in 2014, but the balance continued to be delayed. I am pleased to know the remaining $11,250 is now its way to the Park District.

Two Blodgett Houses, one built in 1846 and the other in 1892, are located in Downers Grove’s Wandschneider Park at 831 Maple Avenue. The village’s historical museum is located in the 1892 home. The funds the park district will soon receive will help support interpretive signs so that citizens can continue to appreciate the home for years to come. I hope the final grant supporting the Blodgett House approved in 2009 for interior work will also be released soon.

Rep. Olsen Learns about Infrastructure Challenges through Central Illinois Tour
Providing quality infrastructure is one of the most important responsibilities of government. Earlier this month I joined fellow legislators to gain a better understanding of the infrastructure challenges facing rural communities as we visited bridges, roads, and industrial sites in Menard and Sangamon Counties. State Representatives Margo McDermed (R-Frankfort), Tim Butler (R-Springfield), Marcus Evans Jr. (D-Chicago) and Sara Wojcicki Jimenez (R-Springfield) also participated in the educational event. Thank you to the Transportation for Illinois Coalition for arranging this informative day. 

Olsen Joins Community Leaders at Round Table Discussion to Discuss Opioid Crisis
Illinois is in the midst of an unprecedented opioid crisis. In 2016 alone, opioid-related overdoses took the lives of 1,946 Illinoisans. That’s more than one and a half times the number of homicides and nearly two times the number of fatal car accidents. Tragically, those numbers are still rising. The Illinois Department of Public Health has reported opioid deaths in Illinois increased 13 percent from 2016 to 2017. 

Illinois has set a goal of reducing projected opioid-related deaths by one third over the next three years. It was a privilege last week to join House Republican Leader Jim Durkin (R-Western Springs), medical professionals, police officers, educators, elected officials and community leaders from across DuPage and Will Counties for a round table discussion to help generate ideas to address and solve this epidemic. Following the discussion, I spoke about the importance of our efforts to address opioid deaths in our state. Click here to watch that interview.

Legislators are already addressing the crisis legislatively. Last week Governor Rauner signed SB 2777, which requires medical professionals to take three hours of continuing education on how to safely prescribe opioid medications. The Governor also recently signed the Alternatives to Opioids Act of 2018, adding those who might otherwise seek opioids for pain management to the list of those eligible for medical marijuana. SB 336 puts in place a pilot program that will not compromise patient safety or diminish medical marijuana program standards, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health. Licensed physicians must certify an individual has a medical condition for which an opioid has been or could be prescribed, and participants must register at a licensed dispensary. The program is limited to individuals 21 and older and dispensations are limited to 2.5 ounces every 14 days and cannot exceed 90 days per physician certification.

Governor Signs Legislation to Help Keep Illinois Students in Illinois
From 1991 to 2014, enrollment at Illinois public universities and community colleges declined by 50,000 students, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. In an effort to keep more Illinois students in Illinois for college, last week Governor Bruce Rauner signed two pieces of legislation. I was a vocal supporter of both bills.

SB 2927 creates the AIM HIGH Grant Pilot Program, a merit-based scholarship for Illinois students who attend college in-state. Twenty five million in state funds from the Fiscal Year 2019 budget are earmarked for the program that will then be matched by universities for a total scholarship pool of at least $50 million in merit-based aid. The funds will be disbursed by the Illinois Student Assistance Commission to Illinois’ public universities in proportion to their enrollment of undergraduate, in-state students.

HB 4781 creates a task force to study how students’ college or career interest data can be collected and shared between high schools and higher education institutions. No mechanism is currently in place to easily share information about students’ college or career interests between high schools and higher education systems in Illinois. This data will also allow colleges and universities to enhance their programs and services to support the specific needs of their incoming student cohort through more targeted degree advising and counseling for students. The task force is required to submit the findings of the study to the General Assembly on or before Jan. 30, 2019, and will be dissolved following the submittal.

Olsen Participates in Environmental Town Hall
Thanks to everyone who came out to the Environmental Town Hall meeting I recently attended in Darien with House Republican Leader Jim Durkin (R-Western Springs) and State Senator John F. Curran (R-Downers Grove). We had a great turnout. The event was hosted by the Illinois Environmental Council (IEC) and featured presentations from SCARCE, Sierra Club Illinois and the Metropolitan Planning Council. Topics discussed included flooding, recycling, composting and transportation. I am shown in this photo with Senator Curran, Leader Durkin and the presenters from the various groups.

University of Illinois Springfield Becomes First Hub of Illinois Innovation Network
During the General Assembly’s spring 2018 session, the legislature built a foundation for job creation in the 21st century. Working within the confines of the Fiscal Year 2019 budget, the State allocated $500 million to the new Illinois Innovation Network. The Network will build hubs throughout the state to connect team members with the Discovery Partners Institute. The Institute will be a new high-tech neighborhood to be built in the Burnham Bend in Chicago’s South Loop. Closely affiliated with the University of Illinois, the Institute will consist of teams that will bring together research and innovation projects from all over Illinois.

State and local officials announced on Tuesday, August 28 that the first hub of the Illinois Innovation Network will be part of the University of Illinois Springfield (UIS). Seed money will refit existing office space in Springfield’s downtown, and support for the new hub project from Springfield’s mayor means that the Network may get new, purpose-built space soon for itself. The new hub moves beyond UIS’ existing capacity as an “incubator” for small business to also include ultra-high-speed data links with other incubation locations and future Innovation Network hubs.

City BBQ Now Open in Downers Grove
I was able to join Chamber630 recently for a ribbon cutting celebration for City BBQ in Downers Grove. If you haven’t stopped in yet, welcome them to the village while you enjoy some really good food. I’m told all of their meats are smoked on site. I wish City BBQ the very best as they join the Downers Grove business community. 

Rauner Maintains Consumer Choice in Health Insurance through Bill Vetoes
The Governor’s recent total veto of HB 2624 and amendatory veto of SB 1737 defended growing demand among Illinois residents for short-term, limited duration (STLD) health plan coverage. STLD policies are important to a wide variety of Illinois residents who need health care coverage for a non-standard length of time that is shorter than one year. Many Illinoisans who are in the process of developing their careers know that they will live in Illinois for a limited period of time. They are subject to the overall federal law that mandates that uninsured individual Americans buy health coverage, but the standard one-year length of insurance coverage of plans offered in Illinois under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) does not meet these non-standard needs.

HB 2624 contained onerous provisions intended to wipe out the ability of STLD health insurers to sell their policies to career-minded young Illinois adults. Governor Rauner’s decision to veto this bill will preserve the ability of all Illinoisans – especially young adults – to purchase health insurance that matches their own individual needs and budgets. I voted against HB 2624 and SB 1737 when they were debated on the House floor.

Olsen Joins District 58 Leaders for Dedication of New Learning Space
Last week Lester School officially cut the ribbon on their new classrooms - which are already being fully utilized for the 2018-2019 school year. I was glad to join Principal Carin Novak, administrators, teachers, community members, and the District 58 Board of Education to celebrate this new learning space. 

Illinois Public Universities to Provide $50 Million in Additional MAP Grant Aid
The cost of this program will be split 50/50 between the Illinois state budget and by the universities where the student beneficiaries are enrolled. Like existing MAP grants, the additional money will provide merit-based student funding to which students and their families will apply based upon financial need. Financial need is determined by formula following the submission by students and their families of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) student aid eligibility form. The MAP grant bill was signed on Sunday, August 26, by Governor Rauner.
State Representative David S. Olsen (R-Downers Grove) is joining several DuPage Republican lawmakers to assist Loaves & Fishes with the collection of personal care items during the month of September.

Loaves & Fishes is a not-for-profit food pantry that feeds up to 800 DuPage County families per week. At Loaves & Fishes, families in need can visit the pantry and shop for free in a grocery store-like setting. According to Loaves & Fishes President and CEO Mike Havala, the pantry is experiencing a shortage of personal care items to supplement the food staples families need.

“We are very grateful to the DuPage County Representatives and Senators for their collection of personal care items,” said Havala. “Having these essential items offers added dignity to struggling families and individuals.”

Items in short supply right now include diapers and wipes, laundry detergent, toilet paper, shampoo, toothpaste and household cleaning products.

“Hundreds of DuPage County families relay on Loaves & Fishes each week to help them put food on their table and to provide other essentials,” said Olsen. “Unfortunately, this time of year the pantry tends to run low on personal care items that are also important to families. It’s a pleasure to partner with several of my House and Senate colleagues to help replenish Loaves & Fishes’ supply of personal care items.”

Those who wish to donate may drop items off at the following legislative offices:
  • State Rep. Peter Breen- 929 S. Main St. Suite 105A, Lombard, 9:00 am to 4:00 pm M-F 
  • State Senator Michael Connelly- 552 S. Washington St., Suite 104, Naperville, 8:00 am to 5:00pm M-F 
  • State Senator John Curran- 7501 South Lemont Road, Suite 315, Woodridge, 10:00 am to 3:00 pm M-F (please call prior to drop off) 
  • State Rep. Jim Durkin- 16W281 83rd St. Burr Ridge, 8:30am to 5:00 pm M-F 
  • State Rep. Deanne Mazzochi- 1 S. Cass Avenue, Suite 205, Westmont, 9:00 am to 4:00 pm M-F 
  • State Senator Jim Oberweis- 959 Oak Street, North Aurora, 9:00 am to 5:00 pm M-Th, 9:00 am to 4:00 pm F 
  • State Rep David Olsen- 633 Rogers Street, Suite 108, Downers Grove, 9:00 am to 3:00 pm M-F (please call prior to drop off) 
  • State Rep. Grant Wehrli- 55 S. Main Street, Suite 383, Naperville, 10:00 am to 2:00 pm M-Th 
  • State Rep. Christine Winger- One Tiffany Pointe, Suite G3, Bloomingdale, 9:00 am to 4:00 pm M-F
State Representative David S. Olsen (R-Downers Grove) announced today that State funds awarded to the Downers Grove Park District for interpretive signs for the Blodgett House that have been delayed since 2009 have been authorized for release by the Governor’s Office of Management & Budget (GOMB). The funds were initially awarded as part of the Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity’s (DECO) Illinois Jobs Now! Capital Plan, but only a portion of the funds were ever delivered.

“The Downers Grove Park District was awarded a $15,000 grant in 2009, but the money never arrived,” said Olsen. “They eventually received $3,750 in 2014, but the balance continued to be delayed. I am pleased to know the remaining $11,250 has been authorized to be released and will soon find its way to the Park District.”

Two Blodgett Houses, one built in 1846 and the other in 1892, are located in Downers Grove’s Wandschneider Park at 831 Maple Avenue. The village’s historical museum is located in the 1892 home.

“The Blodgett House is a historical gem in our community and is a critical part of our village’s history,” Olsen said. “The funds the park district will soon receive will help support interpretive signs so that citizens can continue to appreciate the home for years to come. I hope the final grant supporting the Blodgett House approved in 2009 for interior work will also be released soon.”
The opioid crisis continues to impact all Illinois communities, and this week State Representative David S. Olsen (R-Downers Grove) joined House Republican Leader Jim Durkin (R-Western Springs), medical professionals, police officers, educators, elected officials and community leaders at a forum to discuss solutions to the epidemic.
State Representative David S. Olsen has successfully ushered eleven bills into law so far in 2018.

“This year I filed a comprehensive legislative agenda that protects taxpayers, enhances government transparency, improves the Illinois business climate, increases protections for vulnerable segments of our population, assists our military families, and enhances public safety,” said Olsen. I was successful in passing eleven of my bills through the House and Senate and am thrilled that the Governor has now signed all eleven into law.

“My success with getting bills passed this year is a direct result of my commitment to bipartisanship in Springfield,” Olsen added. “I have worked hard to cultivate respectful and productive relationships with lawmakers on both sides of the aisle. When we set our differences aside and focus on what is best for the people of Illinois, we can put good public policy in place.”

Bills that have now been signed into law by Governor Bruce Rauner include:
  • HB 2222 (P.A. 100-0746): Provides consistency with regard to residency requirements for elected officials in Illinois, specifically addressing oversight within the Public Library Act. 
  • HB 4805 (P.A. 100-0640): Reduces costs to specific Illinois businesses, and protects consumers who use money transmitting services like Western Union and PayPal by bringing the Surety Bond requirement for businesses more in line with the actual costs associated with risk. 
  • HB 4867 (P.A. 100-0659): Adds a new layer of transparency to the caseloads of guardians of adults with disabilities by requiring potential guardians to disclose to the court the number of adults with disabilities over which the potential guardian is currently appointed. If the court determines that an individual is appointed guardian over more than five adults with disabilities, the court would be required to notify the Guardianship and Advocacy Commission within one week. 
  • HB 5031 (P.A. 100-0955): Improves the efficiency of state government by removing a duplicative reporting requirement between state agencies and human service providers. 
  • SB2543 (P.A. 100-0793): Promotes government consolidation and taxpayer savings by simplifying the process for dissolution of a mosquito abatement district. 
  • SB 2587 (P.A. 100-0930): Improves public health and saves Illinoisans’ money by adding dentists to the list of health care professionals who can perform over-the-phone “tele-health” services in Illinois. 
  • SB 2658 (P.A. 100-0821): Assists military personnel and their families while addressing the state’s teacher shortage by increasing the period of time during which a provisional educator endorsement is valid to three years for a service member or spouse who is certified in another state. 
  • SB 2721 (P.A. 100-0979): Improves state government efficiency by streamlining the process of regulatory oversight and aligning the licensing process of financial technical (fintech) companies by entering Illinois into a newly-created interstate compact with Georgia, Kansas, Massachusetts, Tennessee, Texas and Washington. 
  • SB 2826 (P.A. 100-0714): Strengthens and updates the Illinois Human Rights Act and protections for women by clarifying that "order of protection status" includes status as a person protected under any order of protection existing in Illinois law. 
  • SB 3134 (P.A. 100-0730): Addresses flooding issues in the suburbs by creating a commission to study flood control practices and conduct a survey in DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry and Will counties. 
  • SB 3236 (P.A. 100-0807): Improves transparency by requiring a school district’s administrative costs be reflected on school report cards. 
According to Olsen, when legislators return to Springfield for the Fall Veto Session in November, he will continue pushing for adoption of a few more of his bills that are still pending. “I have an animal welfare bill that has a great deal of bipartisan support. It passed the House but stalled in the Senate during the spring session,” said Olsen. “I am hopeful that the Senate will bring my bill to the floor for a vote this fall.”
State Representative David S. Olsen (R-Downers Grove) will continue his mobile office hours tour next week with an event scheduled on Tuesday, August 28 at the Woodridge Public Library, 3 Plaza Drive, in Woodridge.

The event is part of a series of mobile office hours events meant to provide residents of the 81st Legislative House District with easy access to their elected Springfield representative.

“The 81st District includes portions of several different municipalities, so I am very aware that my Downers Grove District Office is not near the homes of many of my constituents,” said Olsen. “By holding office hours in other communities, the people I represent in Springfield can come and share their concerns and ideas at a location that is convenient for them.”

Olsen and a member of his staff will have a table set up at the library from 11:30 AM until 12:30 PM.

“I look forward to talking one-on-one with people as I bring my office to them in their own community,” said Olsen. “I can help explain the services my office can provide while learning about their personal priorities.”

No appointment is needed. Future mobile office hours dates and locations will be posted on Olsen’s web site at www.repolsen.com.
This year in Springfield, State Representative David S. Olsen (R-Downers Grove) partnered with State Senator Pamela Althoff (R-McHenry) on two initiatives that streamline state government operations. On August 19, Governor Bruce Rauner signed both bills into law.

HB 5031 (Public Act 100-0955) removes a duplicative reporting requirement between state agencies and human service providers. The bill received unanimous support in the House and Senate prior to being sent to the Governor.

“This new law repeals statutory language that in recent years had two departments filing the same data for pre-qualification of grants through the Illinois Department of Human Services (DHS),” said Olsen. “By cleaning up the statutes, we will no longer have two employees doing the same work. Ultimately, this benefits taxpayers through improved efficiency of operations.”

SB 2721 (Public Act 100-0979) streamlines the process of regulatory oversight and aligns the licensing process of financial technology (fintech) companies by entering Illinois into a newly-created interstate compact with Georgia, Kansas, Massachusetts, Tennessee, Texas and Washington. This bill also received unanimous support in the House and Senate.

Althoff said it was a pleasure to work with Olsen on legislation that increases the efficiency of state government. “I got to know Representative Olsen through our joint service on a task force that aims to remove obstacles and barriers so that Illinoisans can access meaningful careers, and he has quickly emerged as a well-respected lawmaker,” said Althoff. “He has a keen ability to find areas of wasteful spending or duplicative services and bring forward legislation that improves the functionality and efficiency of state government.”

Both new laws took effect immediately upon being signed.
State Representative David S. Olsen passed legislation this year that expands people’s access to information and recommended treatment about their dental health. On Friday, Governor Bruce Rauner signed Olsen’s bill into law.

SB 2587 amends the Illinois Telehealth Act to add dentists to the list of "health care professionals" that can perform over-the-phone “tele-health” services in Illinois. “Through this new law, dentists will now be able to perform telehealth services to evaluate, diagnose, or interpret electronically transmitted patient-specific date so that treatment recommendations can be made,” said Olsen. “In addition to the time-savings that accompany telehealth services, there are also potential cost savings.”

According to Olsen, the previous Telehealth Act was limited to physicians, physician assistants, optometrists, advanced practice nurses, clinical psychologists licensed in Illinois, and mental health professionals and clinicians authorized by Illinois law to provide mental health services. “Citizens have been benefitting from telehealth services in other wellness areas for years, and it only makes sense that dental health should be included.”

SB 2587 is now listed in the Illinois State Statutes as Public Act 100-0930.

New Law Authorizes Police to Take Action to Protect Pets
During the extreme heat of summer, we all need to be especially careful about keeping our pets safe. SB 2270, which became law this month as Public Act 100-0740, authorizes law enforcement to take temporary custody of a dog or cat if the companion animal is exposed to extreme temperature conditions for a prolonged period of time. The new law is worded so as to apply not only to companion animals trapped in motor vehicles, but also to animals forced to stay outdoors in conditions of extreme cold. I am a Chief House Co-Sponsor of this new law.

I have a second bill, HB 4191, that seeks to provide limited legal immunity to citizen Good Samaritans who forcibly remove a pet from a locked vehicle during periods of extreme weather. The bill passed with wide, bipartisan support in the House, but stalled in the Senate. The following states have “Good Samaritan-hot car” laws that provide civil immunity, criminal immunity, or both to private citizens who break into a vehicle to rescue an animal: California, Colorado, Florida, Indiana, Massachusetts, Ohio, Tennessee, Vermont, and Wisconsin. Similar bills are pending in Alabama, Arizona and Oregon. It is my hope that my HB 4191 will be approved by the Senate during the November veto session.

Children Return to Classrooms for 2018-2019 School Year
Buses are back in our neighborhoods and children from throughout the 81st District started returning to school this week. Last Tuesday, I joined members of the Downers Grove Lions Club as we welcomed new teachers joining the Downers Grove Grade School District 58 and Community High School District 99 at the Lions’ 93rd Annual New Teacher Luncheon. Thank you to these new teachers for stepping up to serve students in our community! Best of luck for a successful school year! 

Take My Survey!
By now, residents of the 81st District should have received my 2018 End of Session Report. This mailing included a comprehensive look at legislation of interest during the 2018 session year. The report also included a brief survey. In addition to sending the survey through the mail as part of my annual report, I have also posted it to my web site. I hope to receive wide participation by the residents of the 81st District. This year’s survey includes six multiple choice questions and an area for an open-ended response. Please take a few minutes to share your input. You can click here to get started. 

Mark Your Calendar for Upcoming Community Outreach Events
Be sure to mark your calendars for these upcoming events in the 81st District: 
  • Thursday, August 23: Environmental Town Hall, 6:30 PM until 8:00 PM, Indian Prairie Library, 401 Plainfield Road, Darien (please RSVP at www.ilenviro.org/darien
  • Tuesday, August 28: Mobile Office Hours, 11:00 AM until 12:30 PM, Woodridge Public Library, 3 Plaza Drive, Woodridge 
  • Thursday, September 20: Senior Fair with Downers Grove Park District, 10:00 AM until 1:00 PM, Lincoln Center Gymnasium, 935 Maple Ave, Downers Grove 
Governor Signs Olsen Bill that Addresses Teacher Shortage
On “Kids Day” at the Illinois State Fair, Governor Bruce Rauner signed a bill of mine that addresses Illinois’ teacher shortage while removing barriers that can make it difficult for service members and their spouses to teach in Illinois schools. SB 2658, lengthens to three years (currently two years) the period of time during which a provisional educator endorsement for a service member or spouse is valid. This new law helps ensure we have quality teachers in our classrooms. It also works to make certain that when our service members and their spouses return to civilian life and the workforce, meaningful employment is within reach. The provisions of the new law take effect in September of this year. 

Olsen Celebrates India Day in Naperville
Earlier this month I was able to attend the India Day celebration in Naperville. A large group gathered at Knoch Park to celebrate Indian heritage and culture at one of the largest Indian-American festivals in the United States. The celebration included a parade, musical performances, food, and a variety of other entertainment. Governor Bruce Rauner was also present to honor the contributions of Indian-Americans in Illinois. 

Bicentennial Commission Announces Plans for August 26 Constitution Day
On August 26, 1818, Illinois adopted its first state Constitution. This anniversary will be celebrated across the state later this month with a variety of events, including the dedication of a new Bicentennial Plaza in Springfield adjacent to the Illinois Governor’s Mansion.

Governor Bruce Rauner will kick off the anniversary in Shorewood with his annual Route 66 Motorcycle Ride which culminates at the new Plaza where he will preside over the dedication and then host a BBQ for riders at the Mansion. Those interested may register at govsride.eventbrite.com.

Additional celebrations will take place in many other regions of the state – from Kaskaskia to Highland Park – to mark the occasion in 1818 when the state ratified its Constitution.

The full list of events and details can be found at www.illinois200.com. The list includes:
  • Governor’s Route 66 Motorcycle Ride – Shorewood to Springfield, IL. 
  • East St. Louis Heritage Festival in partnership with Ameren Illinois and City of East St. Louis- East St. Louis, IL 
  • Where Illinois Began Dedication in partnership with Liberty Bell of the West Chapter, National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution - Chester, IL 
  • Bicentennial Plaza Dedication in partnership with the Illinois REALTORSÃ’ Association and City of Springfield– Springfield, IL 
  • Du Quoin State Fair Veteran’s Day Celebration in partnership with Illinois Department of Agriculture – Du Quoin, IL 
  • Addison Bicentennial Parade & Bash in partnership with the Village of Addison and the Medinah Shriners – Addison, IL 
  • Galena Constitution Day Celebration in partnership with Visit Galena and the Grant Home– Galena, IL 
  • Dixon Constitution Day Celebration – Dixon, IL 
  • Ravinia Concert featuring New Orleans musical tribute to Chicago Blues– Highland Park, IL 
State Representative David S. Olsen Honored for100% Pro-Environment Voting Record
The Illinois Environmental Council (IEC) recently published its 2018 legislative scorecard, and I am pleased to announce that I earned a perfect voting record award for my votes relative to the environment this year. During the spring session, lawmakers had several opportunities to vote in favor of bills that were supportive of our environment without having a negative impact on Illinois businesses. I was proud to support the bills on the IEC’s scorecard and consider it an honor to be recognized by them for my support of their initiatives. The IEC is the eyes, ears and voice of the state's environmental community, and there is no more important work we can do than to protect the water we drink, the air we breathe, and the quality of the environment for our future generations. The IEC releases its scorecard in August of each year. Click here to view the full scorecard and the list of scored bills. 

Olsen Meets with Members of “WeWill” for Legislative Discussion
On August 10 I had an opportunity to meet with several women from “WeWill,” a non-profit that focuses on empowering women by encouraging them to become involved with the legislative process. We discussed many issues ranging from marijuana policy to home birth laws. I am shown in this photo with members of the group at the Fun Zone in Downers Grove. 

Governor Rauner Signs Olsen Bill that Expedites Consolidation Procedures
With more than 7,000 individual units of government in our state, supporting consolidation initiatives that save taxpayers money is a legislative priority for me. On August 10, Governor Bruce Rauner signed a piece of legislation I sponsored this year that simplifies and expedites consolidation procedures for certain layers of government. SB 2543 allows mosquito abatement district boards, by a majority vote, to consolidate the abatement district into a municipality, township or county with agreement by the entity that would assume the mosquito abatement responsibilities. Under the previous law, mosquito abatement districts could only be dissolved through a lengthy process of petition, hearing and referendum. There was no procedure for an abatement board to make a consolidation decision. SB 2543 is now listed in the Illinois State Statutes as Public Act 100-0793.

Olsen Participates in Will County Farm Bureau Roundtable Discussion
It was pleasure recently to join members of the Will County Farm Bureau for a productive discussion of agricultural issues. A lot of good information was shared and we had a productive discussion of issues including the state budget and infrastructure. I am shown here with my colleagues State Representatives Lindsay Parkhurst (R-Kankakee) and Nick Smith (D-Chicago). 

Olsen Legislation Increasing Transparency of School District Administration Costs Signed into Law
School district taxes comprise the largest portion of every property owner’s tax bill, so I was pleased last week when Governor Rauner signed my SB 3236, which requires the school report cards published annually by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) to now include the most current data collected relative to a school district’s administrative costs. Current law requires ISBE to prepare by October 31 of each year a school district report card for each of the state’s public school districts. Data must include student and workforce demographics, financial and curriculum information and other data such as average class size, a breakdown of students’ racial and ethnic backgrounds, percentage of low-income, special education and limited English proficiency students, operating expenditures, per-pupil state pension contributions and various other data. Beginning with the October 2018 report cards, administrative costs will also be included.

Rep. Olsen Discusses Fair Redistricting with Naperville Rotarians
Earlier this month I had an opportunity to attend a meeting of the Naperville Downtown Rotary Club, where I discussed the current status of legislative redistricting in Illinois and efforts to bring fair maps to our State with an engaged group of Rotarians. I am shown in this picture with Naperville Downtown Rotary Immediate Past President Kevin McQuillan. I appreciated the invitation to speak to this wonderful group of involved citizens. 

Olsen Legislation that Adds Residency Requirement for Library Trustees Signed into Law
Earlier this year Lisle Library District Trustee Tom Hummel brought to my attention a loophole in Illinois that would allow library trustees to serve in areas other than where they live. Most elected positions include residency requirements and language that prohibits convicted felons or those who don’t pay their taxes from serving. I promptly filed HB 2222, which puts in place a one-year residency requirement for library trustees and disqualifies from service any candidate convicted of a felony or who is delinquent in taxes or fees owed to the library district. Governor Rauner signed this bill into law on August 10. The provisions of the new law take effect beginning with candidates in the 2019 consolidated election.
Taxpayers will soon have greater access to information regarding their local school districts’ administrative costs thanks to legislation sponsored by State Representative David S. Olsen (R-Downers Grove) that was recently signed into law.

SB 3236, now listed in the Illinois State Statutes as Public Act 100-0807, requires the school report cards published annually by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) to now include the most current data collected relative to a school district’s administrative costs. “School district taxes comprise the largest portion of every property owner’s tax bill, and they deserve full transparency so they can see how their money is being spent,” said Olsen. “School districts have this information, so it only makes sense that it would be made easily accessible to taxpayers.”

According to Olsen, current law requires ISBE to prepare by October 31 of each year a school district report card for each of the state’s public school districts. Data must include student and workforce demographics, financial and curriculum information and other data such as average class size, a breakdown of students’ racial and ethnic backgrounds, percentage of low-income, special education and limited English proficiency students, operating expenditures, per-pupil state pension contributions and various other data. Beginning with the October 2018 report cards, administrative costs will also be included.

SB 3236 received unanimous support in the House and Senate earlier this year.
Legislation that simplifies and expedites consolidation procedures for certain layers of government was signed into law recently by Governor Bruce Rauner.

State Representative Davis S. Olsen (R-Downers Grove) served as the Chief House Sponsor of SB 2543, which allows mosquito abatement district boards, by a majority vote, to consolidate the abatement district into a municipality, township or county with agreement by the entity that would assume the mosquito abatement responsibilities.

“Consolidation initiatives that save taxpayers money is a legislative priority of mine, and this new law removes red tape and makes it easier for consolidation to occur,” said Olsen. “With more than 7,000 individual units of government in our state, we must look at ways to consolidate taxing districts so taxpayers can achieve the tax relief they desperately need. This new law is a definite step in the right direction.”

Under the previous law, mosquito abatement districts could only be dissolved through a lengthy process of petition, hearing and referendum. There was no procedure for an abatement board to make a consolidation decision. “SB 2543 has a long list of bipartisan co-sponsors who all agree that we must eliminate bureaucratic barriers that impede consolidation. We will continue to seek opportunities to simplify the consolidation process when taxpayer savings can result.”

SB 2543 is now listed in the Illinois State Statutes as Public Act 100-0793.
State Representative David S. Olsen (R-Downers Grove), a vocal supporter of the Illinois businesses that drive the state’s economy, proved through his voting record in 2018 that it is possible to be both pro-business and pro-environment.

The Illinois Environmental Council (IEC) recently published its 2018 legislative scorecard and has honored Olsen with a perfect voting record award for 2018. “Over the last year lawmakers had several opportunities to vote in favor of bills that were supportive of our environment without having a negative impact on Illinois businesses,” said Olsen. “I was proud to support the bills on the IEC’s scorecard and consider it an honor to be recognized by them for my support of their initiatives.”

IEC Executive Director Jen Walling praised Olsen for his support of the IEC’s 2018 scorecard items, saying, “Representative Olsen voted 100% of the time with the environmental community on several pieces of key legislation this year,” said Walling. “The IEC is honored by Representative Olsen’s dedication to Illinois’ environment and we look forward to working together in the future.”

The 2018 Environmental Scorecard included nine legislative measures. A few of the priorities from the Scorecard include:
  • SB2298: Industrial Hemp Act: Brings new opportunities to farmers as well as benefits to soil by opening new initiatives for sustainable agriculture 
  • SB2773: Renewable Energy Financing: Enhances the property-assessed clean energy (PACE) program by allowing Illinois to help communities access fund for clean energy projects 
  • HB4790: Use of Compost: Increases the use of compost in transportation projects and helps create a market for compost use in Illinois 
“The IEC is the eyes, ears and voice of the state's environmental community, and there is no more important work we can do than to protect the water we drink, the air we breathe, and the quality of the environment for our future generations,” said Olsen. “It has been a pleasure working with them on public policy that accomplishes these goals.”

The IEC releases its scorecard in August of each year. Click here to view the full scorecard and the list of scored bills.
A new level of consistency with regard to residency requirements for elected officials in Illinois is now enshrined in law, thanks to legislation sponsored by State Representative David S. Olsen (R-Downers Grove) that was signed into law on Friday.

HB 2222, which received unanimous support in the House and Senate earlier this year, puts in place a one-year residency requirement for library trustees and disqualifies from service any candidate convicted of a felony or who is delinquent in taxes or fees owed to the library district.

“The need for this legislation was brought to my attention by Lisle Library District Trustee Tom Hummel, who pointed out a loophole in election law as it relates to residency requirements and personal conduct for library district trustees,” said Olsen. “This new law strengthens the qualifications for becoming a library trustee by adding a residency requirement similar to most other public offices, and language which prohibits convicted felons or those who don’t pay their taxes from serving.”

The provisions of HB 2222 take effect beginning with candidates in the 2019 consolidated election.
Governor Bruce Rauner has signed legislation sponsored by State Representative David S. Olsen (R-Downers Grove) that addresses Illinois’ teacher shortage while removing barriers that can make it difficult for service members and their spouses to teach in Illinois schools.

SB 2658, which lengthens to three years (currently two years) the period of time during which a provisional educator endorsement for a service member or spouse is valid, was one of several bills signed on “Kids Day” at the Illinois State Fair on Saturday. A total of seven bills that address the teacher shortage and early childhood education issues received public signings on Kids Day.

“It is fitting that the Governor would highlight SB 2658 as we celebrate Illinois children at the State Fair,” said Olsen. “This bill helps ensure we have quality teachers in our classrooms. It also works to make certain that when our service members and their spouses return to civilian life and the workforce, meaningful employment is within reach.”

According to Olsen, the previous law allowed a service member or spouse of a service member to obtain a Professional Educator License with Stipulations, and a provisional educator endorsement in a specific content area, if he or she holds a valid teaching certificate or license in good standing in another state, meets certain Illinois requirements for educators, and has not engaged in any misconduct that would prohibit an individual from obtaining a license pursuant to Illinois law. This new law extends the time this endorsement is valid to three years in Illinois.

“Our children deserve to receive an excellent education, and I was proud to sponsor or vote in favor of several initiatives that support that goal,” added Olsen.

SB 2658 was approved by the Senate in April and by the House in May. The provisions of the new law take effect in September of this year.