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100th General Assembly Convenes

The 100th General Assembly is underway with inaugural ceremonies completed in the House and Senate. All 118 House members took the Oath of Office last week at Sangamon Auditorium on the University of Illinois at Springfield campus.

As always, our first order of business was to elect a Speaker to serve for the next two years. I was proud to nominate Jim Durkin, a true leader with a talent for bringing people together. Those are certainly qualities we need now more than ever. If you wish, you can watch my nomination speech here.

In the end, the majority party reelected Mike Madigan, who, with the exception of two years, has been Speaker for more than three decades.  For the next two years in the House we will have a good mix of experience and new members with fresh perspectives to tackle our serious challenges, beginning with the budget.  House members have already filed more than 450 bills for the new General Assembly to consider.

Budget Work Continues

In the coming weeks, our top priority must continue to be working on compromise solutions to get a responsible budget in place as soon as possible.

Upon the expiration of the “stopgap” FY17 budget on January 1 authorized State spending stopped on many vital social programs our families and communities depend upon, and for our colleges and universities.

Efforts to reauthorize these programs for the second half of FY17 are continuing to be discussed along with the need for real budget reform and true reforms to the Illinois political process. Reform proposals under discussion include a hard freeze on property tax extensions, term limits for elected Illinois officials, workers’ compensation, and other issues. Senate leaders said that they are working to finalize a comprehensive budget plan by February 1. 
State Representative Dan Brady will serve as a leading voice in the House Republican Caucus this
year and next. Brady (R-Normal) today was appointed Deputy House Republican Leader for the new 100th General Assembly by House Republican Leader Jim Durkin.

“Dan is truly one of the most knowledgeable and experienced members of the General Assembly, and it’s an honor to have him as an integral part of our leadership team,” said Leader Durkin. “He’s a fierce advocate for both large and small communities in his district and for families and taxpayers statewide. And Dan Brady is a coalition-builder, all of which make him an obvious choice to help us through the very difficult challenges we face this spring.”  
On Wednesday, Rep. Dan Brady nominated House Republican Leader Jim Durkin to serve as Speaker of the House for the new 100th General Assembly. Rep. Brady stressed that Leader Durkin has the ability to unite people; a quality we need to resolve serious challenges facing our state.



The Inauguration ceremony for the 100th Illinois General Assembly begins at noon on Wednesday,  January 11th in Sangamon Auditorium on the University of Illinois at Springfield campus. Watch the ceremony live here.

Veto Session Ends With no Budget Agreement

Last Thursday was the General Assembly’s final scheduled day of our fall veto session, and I’m deeply disappointed that Speaker Madigan adjourned the House on Thursday with no agreement on a new budget.  As you know, our temporary budget expires at the end of the year, and as I write this the Speaker has not scheduled any additional session days before December 31st. That’s completely unacceptable.

Families, businesses and vendors in our area are counting on us to get a balanced budget in place so that they can begin to get paid on time for services they provide to the state and our residents. The good news is that the leaders have agreed to continue meeting every day this week to arrive at common ground on ways to make our State’s finances sustainable.  In the coming weeks, we  must keep the pressure up on the leaders and the Governor to ensure the final, difficult decisions are made.  Our time is running short to get this done.

Illinois House Approves Lame Duck Tax Increase Constitutional Amendment

Speaker Madigan has scheduled two “lame duck” session days in January for the 99th General Assembly before the new 100th General Assembly is sworn in on the 11th. To help prevent outgoing legislators from voting for a “lame duck” tax increase on their way out the door, the House last week approved a constitutional amendment that would increase the voting margin required to  increase an income tax rate or a sales tax rate during the so-called ‘lame duck” session.

The General Assembly, under current law, can enact “lame duck” tax hikes by simple majority in both houses.  If HJRCA 62 were to become law, the margin would increase to three-fifths – the same “supermajority” as is currently required to increase State general-obligation debt, approve amendments to the Constitution of Illinois, and approve amendments to the federal Constitution of the United States.   The House approved the recommended change on a bi-partisan vote of 84-18-2.  The Senate has not yet taken action.

https://drive.google.com/a/ilhousegop.org/file/d/0B--kX4sC8rqWZXlQZlhzUHdCYW0wV3kzMnJUTDRLZG1GTmNF/viewArea families can read more about the state’s stopgap budget, state funding increases for local school districts and other important issues from this year’s legislative session here on State Representative Dan Brady’s website. Rep. Brady has posted his Session Review online to keep local residents up to date without the costs associated with a mailed newsletter.

“Throughout the summer I have attended events across the district giving updates on our budget situation, school funding, funding for our colleges and universities and other major challenges we have worked on this year. Posting the Session Review on my website will make updated information even more accessible to local families.” Rep. Brady said.

Representative Brady said the Session Review is readily accessible here on his website by clicking the Session Review 2016 icon in this story, or in the top right hand margin of the homepage. The Review is also printable.

“Anyone with computer access can read and print the Session Review. I do understand that there are some without computer access who may be interested in the information and they are welcome to contact my district office at 309-662-1100 or stop by at 104 W. North Street in Normal for a copy,” Rep. Brady said.
State Representative Dan Brady is teaming up with Congressmen Rodney Davis and Darin LaHood to host a Senior Resources Fair to help connect seniors with local, state and federal services that can assist them.

“I am excited to join with Congressmen LaHood and Davis for this senior fair. It’s a  great opportunity for senior citizens to take advantage of ‘one stop shopping’ to learn about services offered at both the state and federal level that can help with a variety of issues from reducing medical costs to preventing scams and identity theft,” Representative Brady said.
 
The Senior Resources Fair, "Connecting Seniors to Services" will be held August 11, from 9:30am to 11:30am at ARC, located at 600 East Willow Street in Normal. 

From 9:30am to 10:30am there will be presentations by the Office of the Illinois Attorney General, Social Security Administration, and Medicare. 

From 10:30am to 11:30am seniors will enjoy a resource fair with local, state and federal agencies and organizations providing information on services and programs of interest. Local participants include state and federal agencies, townships, police and fire departments, libraries, and many more.
“In addition to all of the important information that will be available, this is also a great opportunity for seniors to let me and the Congressmen know what’s on your mind and what we can do to help. I hope to see you all at ARC on August 11th,” Representative Brady said.