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.
Governor Signs Four More Olsen Bills into Law 
We are at the point of the year when the Governor is signing the many bills that were approved in the House and Senate during the spring session. In recent days, Governor Bruce Rauner has signed into law the following bills I sponsored: 
  • HB 4867 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. The new provision would also apply to those who wish to be appointed as guardian of the estate of an adult with disabilities. 
  • HB 4805 reduces costs for money transmitting services like Western Union and PayPal, by bringing surety bond requirements more in line with the actual costs associated with risk. The result will be cost savings for existing businesses and lower costs for new companies who would like to do business in Illinois. 
  • SB 2826 clarifies the Illinois Human Rights Act by stating that "order of protection status" includes status as a person protected under any order of protection existing in Illinois law. When the Illinois Human Rights Act was enacted, there was only one type of order of protection. Since that time, three new types of orders of protection have been created, including No Contact Order, Civil No Contact Order, and Protective Orders under the Code Criminal Procedure. SB 2826 closes any possible loopholes to ensure that proper protections are in place. 
  • SB 3134 creates a state commission to study methods to mitigate flooding and storm water management issues in the Fox River Watershed. 
Great Turnout for Annual Jobs Fair

Thank you to everyone who came out for the Jobs Fair that I hosted with House Republican Leader Jim Durkin (R-Western Springs) and State Senator John F. Curran (R-Downers Grove) on July 25. This is always a very successful event and the feedback we receive is extremely positive. This year we had 110 employers gathered under one roof, and all of them were hiring. Hundreds of people showed up with resumes in hand for this massive hiring event. 

Our annual jobs fair allows job seekers the opportunity to take advantage of all potential vacancies and speak to recruiters directly about their qualifications and job requirements. Many individuals were interviewed on-site or were able to schedule interviews with the hopes of securing new employment. I am shown in this photo with officers from Senator Curran, Leader Durkin and Illinois State Police officers.

Deanne Mazzochi Sworn In as New Representative for 47th House District
On July 24, it was my pleasure to join lawmakers and other elected officials from across DuPage County as we welcomed Illinois’ newest State Representative in the General Assembly, Deanne Mazzochi (R-Elmhurst). She was appointed to the seat recently vacated by Patti Bellock, who served the people of the 47th District with distinction for nearly 20 years before being named Director of the Illinois Department of Healthcare & Family Services in early July. Before becoming the State Representative for the 81st District, I served with Mazzochi on the College of DuPage (COD) Board of Trustees. It was an honor to work with her to bring positive change to COD, and I am looking forward to working with her again as we strive to bring similar change to our great state. 

Mark Your Calendar for Upcoming Community Outreach Events
Thank you to everyone who came out to my August 4 Coffee & Conversation event in Woodridge. Many people stopped by to share feedback with me and their local elected officials, which included Senator John F. Curran, Woodridge Mayor Gina Cunningham and members of the Woodridge Village Board. 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) 
  • Thursday, September 20: Joint Senior Fair with Downers Grove Park District, 10:00 AM until 1:00 PM Lincoln Center Gymnasium, 935 Maple Ave, Downers Grove 
Illinois State Police Accepting Applications for Troopers
The Illinois State Police (ISP) Merit Board is currently accepting applications for state troopers. Applications are being accepted for Cadet Class 129, tentatively scheduled to start in April of 2019. In order to be considered for Cadet Class 129, the Merit Board must receive a completed application and required documentation by August 15, 2018. Cadets who graduate from the ISP academy are assigned to patrol, but can later be transferred to positions in areas like crime scene investigation, SWAT, becoming a pilot, K-9 officer, investigator, motorcycle officer or safety education officer. Applicants may apply online at: https://www.illinoistrooper.com.

Olsen Joins Indian Prairie Library Patrons for Pet-Palozza
Indian Prairie Public Library located in Darien is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year. I recently stopped by “Pet-Palooza,” a fun-filled event the library hosted for area families. I am shown in this photo at Pet Palooza with members of the Indian Prairie Library board of trustees. 

Governor Signs Bill Expanding Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program
Governor Bruce Rauner has signed SB 3527, a bipartisan bill improving and expanding the River Edge Redevelopment Zone (RERZ) Historic Tax Credit. The successful economic development incentive now will be available to communities statewide.

Upon signing the bill, Governor Rauner said, “This legislation opens up millions of dollars in economic incentives in the form of tax credits for historic preservation projects throughout Illinois. It is imperative that we add jobs and fuel economic development. This bill will help Illinois achieve those goals while also preserving our past and making our state even more beautiful to visit.”

Established in 2012, the RERZ originally was a five-year pilot program allowing a 25 percent state income tax credit for qualifying projects in blighted, historic riverfront areas in Peoria, Rockford, Elgin, East St. Louis and Aurora. SB 3527 expands availability of the historic tax credits to similar projects across the state. It also adds a new Illinois Historic Preservation Tax Credit with $15 million in credits to be administered by the Historic Preservation Division of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources each year between January 2019 and December 2023.

Rep. Olsen Supports Local YMCA
The Indian Boundary YMCA in Downers Grove is a wonderful community organization that provides recreational opportunities to area families. I was proud to support their annual golf outing, which helps ensure the YMCA can serve all residents regardless of their ability to pay. I’m shown in the picture at right with Indian Boundary YMCA board members and supporters. 

USACE Seeking Input on DuPage River Report
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Chicago District, has released for public comment the DuPage River, Illinois Feasibility Report and Integrated Environmental Assessment. Public meetings have been scheduled for the purpose of providing the public with information and seeking input from stakeholders on the recommended plan. Meetings will take place at the following locations:
  • DuPage County: Wednesday, August 15, 6:00 PM, DuPage County Administration Building, 421 N. County Farm Road, Wheaton 
  • Will County: Thursday, August 16, 6:00 PM, Village of Plainfield Public Works Building, 14400 Coil Plus Drive, Plainfield 
The study of the DuPage River and its tributaries investigated overbank and backwater flooding in high risk areas to develop alternatives to mitigate flood risks. The study area included 40 communities in DuPage and Will Counties and approximately 900,000 residents. The plan is available online at www.lrc.usace.army.mil (follow the link under “hot Info” at the top of the page). Comments can also be submitted via email through Monday, August 27, at dupageriver@usace.army.mil or mailed to: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Chicago District, 231 S. LaSalle Street, Suite 1500, Chicago, IL 60604, Attention planning branch (DuPage River).

Olsen Welcomes More New Businesses to DuPage County
The last few weeks have been busy with many ribbon cuttings for new businesses in and around the 81st District! I was able to attend a Chamber630 ribbon cutting and grand opening celebration for Fuzzy Logic Escape Room in Downers Grove. Escape rooms offer families, friends or co-workers an opportunity to put their observation, critical thinking and communication skills to the test as they use clues to solve a puzzle. 

My staff and I also attended recent ribbon cuttings for Gina Sulo Salon, MOD Pizza, Mud and Char Downers Grove and 4 Star Dental in Woodridge. Welcome to these new businesses that will provide great fun, valuable services and delicious food and drink for the people in and around the 81st District!

CGFA Publishes Fiscal Year 2019 Budget Summary
The Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability (CGFA), the nonpartisan budget watchdog arm of the Illinois General Assembly, released its Fiscal Year 2019 Budget Summary on Wednesday, August 1. The Fiscal Year 2019 appropriations bill was enacted as HB 109, and the Budget Implementation Act that amends State statutes to align with the appropriations numbers was enacted as HB 3342. Together, the two bills constitute the State’s budget for the current fiscal year.

The Illinois Constitution requires the State to annually enact a balanced budget in which spending does not exceed projected revenues. Fiscal problems have resulted as the State has, in recent year, failed to strictly enforce this mandate. For Fiscal Year 2019, however, CGFA finds that projected State revenues and projected State spending closely match each other, fulfilling the balanced budget mandate. CGFA will closely monitor State revenues on a 30-day basis from now until the end of the fiscal year to review whether the cash flows of money coming in match the projections made when the budget was adopted.

IDES Reports on June Job Creation within Illinois Metro Areas
In June 2018, there was net new job creation in nine metro areas, including the key Chicagoland metropolitan area. Five metro areas lost jobs, with the biggest loss reported in Springfield. However, Chicago’s net new job creation (up 42,300 jobs in June 2018) dwarfed Springfield’s loss of 1,400 jobs. Five industry sectors generated June 2018 job growth in the majority of Illinois metro areas, with growth reported in transportation, warehousing and utilities; education and health services; manufacturing; professional and business services; and leisure and hospitality. Unfortunately, pockets of comparatively high unemployment continued to exist in some of the traditional heavy-industry regions of the state. June 2018 unemployment rates equaled or topped 5.0% in Danville (6.0%), Decatur (5.7%), Rockford (5.2%), Carbondale (5.1%), and Peoria (5.0%).

Annual Worker Pay Gains Rise at Fastest Pace since 2008
The nationwide figures were released by the U.S. Department of Labor, which reports that pay and benefits for all U.S. workers increased 2.8% in the second quarter of 2018. The pay and benefit hikes were driven by a tight labor market, with nationwide jobless numbers posted at 4.0% for June 2018. Illinois’ jobless rate was slightly higher than the national average, with June 2018 unemployment in the Prairie State coming in at 4.3%.
A state commission will soon begin studying methods to mitigate flooding and storm water management issues in the Fox River Watershed thanks to legislation sponsored by State Representative David S. Olsen (R-Downers Grove) that was signed into law on Friday.

“Communities in the collar counties, especially in DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry and Will, have been affected by floods in recent years, and property owners are looking to the General Assembly for help,” said Olsen. “The commission created through this new law will study and develop an integrated floodplain management coalition of the affected communities so they can jointly leverage community resources to collaborate on flood preparedness, protection, response, recovery, damage reduction, and floodplain management education. They would also seek ways to help prevent future property damage and threats to public health from flooding.”

The Flood Control Commission created through SB 3134, now listed in the Illinois State Statutes as Public Act 100-0730, will be chaired by the Illinois Director of Natural Resources or a designee. Membership will include:
  • Five members appointed by each of four legislative leaders of the General Assembly 
  • One member appointed by each of the chairmen of the DuPage, Kane, Lake and McHenry County Boards, and the County Executive of Will County upon the advice of the counties’ stormwater management planning committees 
  • One member appointed by each of the chairmen of the DuPage, Kane, Lake and McHenry County Boards and the County Executive of Will County upon the advice of a municipality in each of the counties 
  • The Director of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) or designee 
  • The Governor or a designee 
The commission will complete their work and submit a final report to the General Assembly by the end of 2019.
Recently some residents of Woodridge received an extremely offensive white supremacist/anti-Semitic leaflet. Unfortunately, other neighboring Chicago-area communities have experienced similar incidents in recent weeks. In response, Senator Pat McGuire, Senator John F. Curran, Representative John Connor and Representative David S. Olsen, the Illinois General Assembly members representing the Village of Woodridge, issued the following joint statement:

“We join Mayor Gina Cunningham in denouncing the recent distribution of racist and anti-Semitic leaflets in the Village of Woodridge. We reject the hateful messages of intolerance shown within these leaflets. The racism, bigotry and prejudice displayed in these pamphlets have no place in our society and will not be tolerated. We will remain a compassionate, diverse and caring community which supports and respects one another as diverse and unique individuals. The unity and compassion shown by residents in Woodridge and across our districts is what defines our community.”

Currently, the Woodridge Police Department is investigating this incident. Anyone with information that would be helpful to this investigation should contact the Police Department at (630) 960-8998.
Legislation sponsored by State Representative David S. Olsen (R-Downers Grove) that strengthens the Illinois Human Rights Act was signed into law on Friday.

The Illinois Human Rights Act defines unlawful discrimination as discrimination against a person because of his or her race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, age, sex, marital status, order of protection status, disability, military status, sexual orientation, pregnancy, or unfavorable discharge from military service. SB 2826 clarifies the Act by stating that "order of protection status" includes status as a person protected under any order of protection existing in Illinois law.

“When the Illinois Human Rights Act was enacted there was only one type of order of protection,” explained Olsen. “Since that time, three new types of orders of protection have been created, including No Contact Order, Civil No Contact Order, and Protective Orders under the Code Criminal Procedure. We needed to close any possible loopholes to ensure that proper protections are in place.”

The Illinois Human Rights Act allows the Human Rights Commission to enforce prohibitions on unlawful discrimination in employment, real estate, financial credit, and public accommodations.

SB 2826 is now listed in the Illinois State Statutes as Public Act 100-0714.

Important legislation sponsored by State Representative David S. Olsen (R-Downers Grove) that helps ensure that vulnerable Illinoisans are receiving proper attention and services from their court-appointed guardians was signed into law today by Governor Bruce Rauner.

HB 4867 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. The new provision would also apply to those who wish to be appointed as guardian of the estate of an adult with disabilities.

“In many cases, adults with disabilities rely heavily upon court-appointed guardians to ensure their needs are met,” said Olsen. “This new law would identify those instances where guardians may be spread too thin and might not be able to adequately serve those for whom they are responsible.”

Through HB 4867, now listed in the Illinois State Statutes as Public Act 100-0659, 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. The Guardianship and Advocacy Commission would then maintain a list of all notifications it receives for reference by other agencies, units of government, and the public.

HB 4867 was approved with nearly unanimous bipartisan support in the House in April and unanimously in the Senate in May. The provisions of the new law take effect on January 1, 2019.