Senator Melinda BushSPRINGFIELD — Illinois’ most important economic development tool has been reinstated, thanks to a measure from Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake).

House Bill 162 reinstates the Economic Development for a Growing Economy (EDGE) tax credit program, allowing the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity to offer incentives to businesses that create new full-time jobs, retain existing jobs and make capital investments in Illinois.

“It's important for us to have every tool available to attract and retain businesses in Illinois and ensure we can offer incentives that allow us to compete with neighboring states,” Bush said. “I represent an area that borders Wisconsin. The EDGE program is essential in helping border communities like mine stay competitive.”

The bill requires the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity to recapture the economic development funds if the recipient does not fulfill its end of the bargain. That money would then be disbursed to the local workforce investment area.

House Bill 162 was signed into law today. It extends the EDGE credit program through June 30, 2022.


Category: Press Releases

Senator Bush speaks on the Senate floorSPRINGFIELD – State Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake) issued the following statement today after Illinois became the 10th state to enact automatic voter registration:

“We should be doing everything possible to make it easier for eligible citizens to participate in our elections,” Bush said. “Automatically registering eligible voters when they interact with state agencies instead of requiring them to fill out duplicative paperwork is a common-sense reform that removes a barrier to voting and saves taxpayer dollars. I am proud that Illinois lawmakers came together to unanimously support this good-government measure.”  

Senator Bush is a chief co-sponsor of Senate Bill 1933, which will automatically register eligible Illinoisans when they interact with certain state agencies. If an individual does not want to be registered, they can opt out. Currently, there are more than 2 million Illinoisans who are eligible to vote but aren’t registered.

Senate Bill 1933 was signed into law today.


Category: Press Releases

Senator Bush speaks on the Senate floorSPRINGFIELD – Senator Melinda Bush’s (D-Grayslake) measure to increase transparency in pricing among service providers and expose gender-based price discrimination was signed into law today.

Senate Bill 298 requires hair salons, barbers, dry cleaners and tailors to provide customers with a price list for services upon request, giving consumers the resources necessary to make educated choices when deciding which businesses to frequent.

“Women have been unfairly charged more than men for the same services for far too long,” Bush said. “Transparent pricing among service providers will help women know whether they are getting a fair deal for services.”

Dry cleaners, barbers and tailors have frequently been examined in studies on gender-based pricing and have been found to charge women more than men for the same services.

“My hope is that this new law will make service providers take a second look at their prices and charge women more fairly,” Bush said.

Last year, Senator Bush’s “pink tax” legislation repealed sales tax on feminine hygiene products. This latest measure builds on Senator Bush’s work to remove economic barriers for Illinois women.

Senate Bill 298 takes effect on January 1, 2018.


Category: Press Releases

Senator Bush speaks on the Senate floorSPRINGFIELD – Voters will soon have the power to consolidate or abolish local townships thanks to a local government consolidation measure championed by Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake), which was signed into law today.

“Local government consolidation is long overdue,” Bush said. “Voters will soon be able to decide what type of government can best serve the needs of their communities.”

Illinois has more than 1,400 townships. Prior to this measure, only three Illinois counties had a framework to consolidate, absorb or eliminate local townships. Because of Bush’s past work on local government consolidation, Lake County is one of the three counties that allowed for consolidation.

The legislation allows all 102 Illinois counties to consolidate local townships with voter consent. Bush championed the same legislation during the 99th General Assembly as SB 388, but the measure died in the House.

“Consolidating local governments is good for Illinois. It saves taxpayer money and reduces government bureaucracy—two things Illinois desperately needs,” Bush said.

Senate Bill 3 was signed into law today. The bill takes effect on January 1, 2018.


Category: Press Releases

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