Parental notification; Health Care Right of Conscience

‘No’ vote on repeal of Parental Notification of Abortion Act

Late on Wednesday night the House of Representatives voted to repeal Illinois’ Parental Notification of Abortion Act. I voted against the repeal because I believe parents have the right to know if their minor child is undergoing a serious medical procedure. The existing law allows a judge to issue a waiver from the notification if there is a danger that the child would face abuse if a parent or guardian is notified. The law was upheld by the Illinois Supreme Court in a unanimous ruling.

In Illinois a minor cannot get a tattoo, obtain a driver’s license, go on a school field trip, play on a school sports team or receive a Tylenol from a school nurse without a parent knowing about it. The legislation passed this week would strip parents of even that basic right when it comes to knowing about an abortion. I believe that is the wrong course of action. Accordingly, I voted No on the repeal, but the bill passed 62-51.

 ‘No’ vote on changes to Health Care Right of Conscience Act

As Governor Pritzker has continued to try and govern the state through an endless series of mandates and executive orders, some Illinoisans have sought relief through the provisions of a state law called the Health Care Right of Conscience Act. The law was drafted to respect and protect the right of conscience of persons who object to certain medical procedures.

This week the House voted to limit the applicability of this law. In just a few hours more than 50,000 Illinoisans went to the General Assembly website and filed witness slips in opposition to the change. I voted ‘No’ because I believe we should respect the rights of conscience of all Illinoisans. The bill passed 64-52 with seven Democrats joining every Republican in voting No.

Electric vehicle bill creates potential for Illinois jobs

The electric vehicle industry is poised for significant growth in the coming years, and Illinois is on its way to embracing the job-creation potential of that industry thanks to legislation passed in the House this week. House Bill 1769 passed the House on Thursday. It contains incentives for electric vehicle manufacturers to locate in Illinois, with all the job-creation opportunities that come with them.

Illinois has been trailing behind our neighboring states and the rest of the country in job creation for far too long. We need more of this sort of bipartisan, job-creation legislation. I was proud to vote Yes and look forward to the opportunities this will bring to Illinois.

Legislation to curtail endless emergency declarations does not get called for a vote

I am a co-sponsor of House Bill 843 which would restrict the Governor’s ability to issue endless emergency and disaster declarations without the consent of the legislature. Under the current law governing emergencies and disasters, the Governor may only issue an emergency proclamation for 30 days, but the law does not say what happens next. Governor Pritzker has been re-issuing his emergency proclamations each 30 days for the past year and a half. It is long past time for that to end.

Our bill would still permit the Governor to have the flexibility to respond to a disaster when it happens, but would require legislative action to extend the disaster proclamation beyond 30 days. It would bring an end to the kind of extended one-man rule we have seen since March 2020. Unfortunately, the Democrat leaders of the General Assembly refused to allow our bill to be heard.

Upcoming IDOC job fair

The Illinois Department of Corrections is hosting a job fair in Pontiac. The event will be on Wednesday November 3 from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the Pontiac Recreation Center, located at 900 N. Elm Street. Some of the other participating agencies include the Illinois Department of Human Services, Wexford and the Livingston County Sheriff’s Department. This is a good opportunity to find out about job openings within these agencies and how to apply.

How much do we owe?

As of the time of this writing, the State of Illinois owes $3,945,051,714 in unpaid bills to state vendors. One year ago, the backlog stood at $8.0 billion. This figure represents the amount of bills submitted to the office of the Comptroller and still awaiting payment. It does not include debts that can only be estimated, such as our unfunded pension liability which is subject to a wide range of factors and has been estimated to be more than $141 billion.

More news from around the state

As passengers return to Willard Airport so does hope of adding flights

Next round of Illinois’ rental payment program to launch November 8

Illinois dentists to offer free services to veterans throughout November

Day care group warns vaccine mandates will lead to less access

Illinois gas prices continue to rise