The Legislative News is here to keep you informed of upcoming legislation.
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The state’s newly expanded electronic Products Recycling and Re-use Act (PA97 - 0287 ), approved in August, went into effect on August 10, 2011. The law mandates 13 electronic products that are illegal to throw out in the trash or in a landfill. Outlawed products include but are not limited to, televisions, laptops, digital converter boxes, printers, monitors, fax machines, computer keyboards, DVD players and digital music players. First-time offenders face a $25 fine.
The Illinois EPA website at http://www.epa.state.il.us/land/electronic-waste-recycling/index.html contains a list of registered collectors of the items covered by this statute.
Seat Belts ( HB 219/PA 97-0016 ): Requires adult passengers in the back seat of a vehicle to wear a seat belt. Effective January 1, 2012.
Video Cameras in Vehicles (HB 3403/PA 97-0499 ): Allows video cameras in cars featuring entertainment or business applications to be displayed on the front monitor so long as the images are not viewable by the driver while operating the vehicle.
LANDLORD-TENANT & CONDOMINIUMS
Public Act 97-0470. After a dwelling unit has been vacated and before the day that a new lessee takes possession of the dwelling unit, the landlord shall change or rekey access to the dwelling unit.
If a lessor does not change or rekey the lock as required in this Section, and a theft occurs at that dwelling unit that is attributable to the lessor’s failure to change or rekey the lock, the landlord is liable for any damages from the theft that occurs as a result of the lessor’s failure to comply with this Section.
The provisions of this Section do not apply to (i) an apartment rental in an apartment building with 4 units or less when one of the units is occupied by the owner or (ii) the rental of a room in a private home that is owner-occupied.
This Act applies to Cook County only. Effective January 1, 2012.
Eviction (HB 1209/PA 97-0247 ): Allows a landlord to request rent be paid for the period of time pending an eviction, if the eviction has been stayed (put on hold) by a judge. Effective January 1, 2012.
Condo Association Court Cost Recovery (SB 1972/PA 97-0535 ):
The purchaser of a unit of a common interest community (Condominium or Townhome) at a judicial foreclosure sale, other than a mortgagee (i) or a purchaser who acquires title from a mortgagee shall have the duty to pay the proportionate share, if any, of the common expenses for the unit that would have become due in the absence of any assessment acceleration during the 6 months immediately preceding institution of an action to enforce the collection of assessments, and (ii) the court costs (but not the attorney’s fees) incurred by the association in an action to enforce the collection that remain unpaid by the owner during whose possession the assessments accrued. If the outstanding assessments and the court costs incurred by the association in an action to enforce the collection are paid at any time during any action to enforce the collection of assessments, the purchaser shall have no obligation to pay any assessments that accrued before he or she acquired title. Effective January 1, 2012.
Shark Fin Ban
HB4119 Amends the Fish and Aquatic Life Code. Provides that a person may not possess, sell, offer for sale, trade, or distribute a shark fin. Defines “shark” and “shark fin”.
The bill sponsored by Rep. Sara Feigenholtz (D-Chicago) would institute the ban on shark fins – the central ingredient in shark fin soup an Asian delicacy, starting July, 2013.
Shark fin bans already have been implemented in Hawaii , Washington , Oregon and California .
This is part of an effort to curtail shark finning, the practice of extracting the animals’ fin and throwing it back in the ocean.
The appetite for shark fin soup, however, has diminished according to a Chinese restaurant owner who was interviewed by the Sun Times.
At the Phoenix restaurant in Chinatown , banquet manager Carol Cheung said the soup has traditionally been served at weddings or large get-togethers, but Cheung said, “I can’t remember the last time I had someone order some from me.”
Passed the House March 8, 2012. Passed first reading in Senate March 21, 2012. Presently in the Senate Environment Committee.
Adult Entertainment Tax
SB 3348 Creates the Live Adult Entertainment Facility Tax Act. Imposes a tax on each operator who operates a live adult entertainment facility in this State. Provides that the amount of the tax is an amount equal to $5 for each customer admitted into the live adult entertainment facility. Creates the Sexual Assault Prevention Fund as a special fund in the State treasury. Requires that the proceeds of the tax be deposited into the Sexual Assault Prevention Fund. The bill has passed two readings in the Senate where it remains.
Residential Buildings Radon Mitigation
HB4665 Amends the Illinois Residential Building code Act to provide that a contract to build a home must contain a provision to include passive radon resistant construction.
Passive radon resistant construction means a pipe installed in new construction that relies solely on the convective flow of air upward for soil gas depressurization and may consist of multiple pipes routed through conditioned space from below the foundation to above the roof.
Has passed first reading in the Senate.
Various Proposals Regarding Cell Phone Use in Vehicles
SB3663 Provides that a person operating a motor vehicle on a roadway may not take a digital photograph or video within 500 feet of an emergency scene where an authorized emergency vehicle is present and making use of audible or visual signals.
This bill has passed the House and one reading in the Senate.
HB5099 Amends the Illinois Vehicle Code. Provides that no person may use a wireless telephone while operating a motor vehicle within 500 feet of an emergency scene except for specified purposes such as reporting the emergency to authorities. Adds digital photographs and video to the definition of “electronic message” in provisions prohibiting the use of electronic communication devices while operating a motor vehicle. Violation of this law would constituted a “moving violation”.
Bill has passed the House and one reading in the Senate.
HB3972 Amends the Illinois Vehicle Code. Provides that a person may not operate a motor vehicle on a roadway while using an electronic communication device (rather than only prohibiting the composing, sending, or reading of electronic messages while operating a vehicle) unless the electronic communication device is used in hands-free or voice-activated mode or one of 6 other limited exceptions apply.
BILLS PROBABLY GOING NOWHERE
Mandatory IRA’s For Small Businesses
HB4497 and SB3278 would require employers with less than 100 employees but more than 10 who have not offered a qualifying retirement plan for the last 2 years to automatically deduct 2% of an employees’ salary (more if the employee requests), and place said funds in an IRA administered by the State Treasurer.
Both bills remain in committee right now, and are probably not proceeding.
Property Tax Limitation
HB4608 This is Rep. Jack Franks’ ( Dem. McHenry County ) most recent attempt to limit property tax rate increases. Historically, taxing districts have been allowed to increase property tax rates by no more than the lesser of 5% or the percentage increase of the Consumer Price Index. Any increase above that limitation must be approved by referendum.
Rep. Franks’ bill would prohibit any increase when the total equalized assessed value of all property within the taxing district is less than the total equalized assessed value for the prior year. An increase could still be authorized by referendum. The bill is limited to counties with a population of 300,000-400,000.
The bill was sent to the House Rules Committee on February 1 st where it remains.
Workers Compensation Reform
Bill Status of SB2521
Enthusiastically supported by the Illinois Chamber of Commerce, this bill would amend the Workers’ Compensation Act. Defines “accident” and “injury”. Provides that “injury” includes that aggravation of a pre-existing condition by an accident arising out of and in the course of the employment, but only for so long as the aggravation of the pre-existing condition continues to be the major contributing cause of the disability. Provides that an injury resulting directly or indirectly from an obscure or unknown cause is not compensable. Would no longer allow an employee to choose in writing to decline their employer’s preferred provider program. Would make changes concerning the determination of the level of permanent partial disability.
Passed first reading in Senate, remains in committee. Not likely to pass this year.
1) “Amazon Tax” Stuck Down . Cook County Circuit Court Judge Robert Lopez Cepero has overturned the Illinois law taxing online sales from out-of-state companies (the so-called “Amazon Tax”).
Cepero ruled that simply having an affiliated company in the state that makes sales or refers customers to an online retailer doesn’t created enough of a presence for tax purposes. Furthermore, the law is unenforceable because a federal internet tax moratorium extends through 2014, The decision may be appealed by the Illinois Attorney General so stay tuned… and consult your tax advisor about paying or attempting to get a refund of the tax.
2) While on the subject of taxes, Cook county Board President Toni Preckwinke has predicted that real estate tax bills will be mailed on time this year, that is on July 1 st with a due date of August 1 st .
3) …and finally, SB1565, the Senate Bill proposing to increase the Illinois Minimum Wage from $8.25 per hour to $10.00 per hour has passed one reading in the Senate and is being debated in the Senate Executive Committee. The Bill also contains provisions guaranteeing annual increases in the minimum wage to its inflation adjusted equivalent at $1.60 per hour in 1968 and also adjusting it to the rate of inflation.
The link to find bills is http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/default.asp
municipalities along the 159th Street Corridor have been collaborating
on a long-term vision for physical improvements and a common marketing
strategy for 159th Street , and are now seeking public input through an
here to read full article.
Action! Make Your Voice Heard!
Contact your Federal, State, and Local elected representatives and let them know how you feel.
For More Information and To Get Involved:
The OPACC Legislative & Government Affairs Committee is dedicated to the following:
Strengthening the relationship between the Chamber and the Village of Orland Park as well as other Local, State, and Federal government bodies and representatives.
Keeping our membership informed of legislation and projects that will affect business in the local area.
you know of an upcoming event, political issue, piece of legislation,
or transportation issue that is valuable to share with OPACC members?
Please contact Committee Chairperson Michael Buck at (708) 925-9136.