Senator Fowler started the week out in Chicago, attending the first meeting of Governor-elect Pritzker's Job Creation and Economic Opportunity Committee.
The 37-member committee met on December 10 to begin work on policy proposals to support Illinois businesses and job creation in Illinois. Throughout the course of the first meeting, members were divided into subcommittees, with Senator Fowler being appointed to serve on the Talent Vocational Training and Workplace Development Committee.
“Pro-business reforms are key to ensuring that Illinois’ business community can grow and thrive, creating economic opportunity in our state,” said Senator Fowler. “I’m looking forward to working with my fellow committee members to explore policy options that will help boost the economy, support our workforce and advocate for our businesses.”
In other news, Senator Fowler is set to host his annual Holiday Open House at the Town and Country Stage in Eldorado beginning at 5 p.m. On December 20, Senator Fowler invites the public to join him for music, hot chocolate and cookies to celebrate the holiday season. The annual event will also feature free photos with Santa Claus.
Also happening this week, Senator Fowler joined members of the community to honor veterans as part of the SIU’s Wounded Warrior Night. The Wounded Warrior Project is a nonprofit organization that works to serve and support injured veterans throughout the nation who have sacrificed for their country.
Senator Fowler also attended an Ohio River Scenic Byway meeting at Cordavinos in Metropolis during the week. The Ohio River Scenic Byway is a route that runs along the Ohio River throughout Southern Illinois’ Ohio River Valley, offering travelers a unique view into some of the attractions, history and destinations found throughout the region.
As citizens throughout Illinois toast the New Year, 253 new laws will take effect. From controversial gun-control laws to fighting human trafficking and celebrating our state’s rich history, these new laws cover a wide range of topics.
Controversial gun-control measures take effect
Several controversial gun-control measures will take effect as the New Year begins. Senate Bill 3256/PA 100-0606 creates a 72-hour waiting period on all firearm purchases, not just on handguns. Family members and law enforcement officials who suspect that someone poses a significant danger of causing harm to themselves or others will be able to petition the court for a firearms restraining order under House Bill 2354/PA 100-0607.
Fighting back against human trafficking
A number of new laws for the 2019 take aim at human trafficking. House Bill 4340/PA 100-0671 expands the list of locations at which information about hotline numbers to call for help or to report unlawful activity must be posted for the public and victims of human trafficking.
Human trafficking survivors will be allowed to bring a civil suit against traffickers under Senate Bill 3108/PA 100-0939, the Trafficking Victims Protection Act. Recognizing the trauma inflicted on trafficking victims, and the barriers that trauma may create to seeking justice, the law also allows others, like family members and victims’ advocates, to bring an action on behalf of a victim.
House Bill 2063/PA 100-1037 changes the Crime Victims Compensation Act to make it easier for victims of human trafficking to meet requirements for compensation. Among the changes is a provision that allows for a longer time frame for reporting.
Get your kicks on the Route 66 Centennial Commission
Route 66, one of the original highways within the National Highway System, will mark its centennial in 2026. House Bill 66/PA 100-0649 creates the 20-member Route 66 Centennial Commission to plan and coordinate commemorative events throughout Illinois to celebrate 100 years on Route 66, and to highlight the history of how local communities grew and changed thanks to the construction of this historic highway.
The full list
There’s a lot more to know as we kick off 2019! To view the full list of all 253 new laws coming in the New Year, visit senatorfowler.com.