Illinois General Assembly Spring 2014 Session Adjourns

May 31, 2014
The Illinois General Assembly adjourned the Spring 2014 legislative session early this morning.  The Illinois General Assembly approved a $35.7 billion state operating budget.  They did not extend the current temporary income tax increase which is still set to roll back from 5% to 3.75% on January 1, 2015.  They may, however, revisit this issue after the November 2014 General Election.
 
Governor Quinn has called the approved budget "incomplete."  It is clear that without further revenue increases, the budget will result in pushing an additional $2 billion in state costs into future fiscal years.  There are also expected to be almost $200 million in cuts in fiscal 2015 to child care, home services and programs for the elderly. 
 
This was, however, an extremely successful year for ILA.  On budget issues, the Illinois General Assembly approved House Bill 6095 (please click on pdf to view full text) which includes library grant appropriations at the Illinois Secretary of State's requested amount.  This will provide level funding to our grant programs in fiscal 2015.  We owe thanks to our many legislative supporters for preventing cuts to library grants.  The Illinois General Assembly also approved in House Bill 3793 capital appropriations including some specific local library capital projects (see below).
 
All three ILA 2014 legislative initiatives were approved.  Senate Bill 1941 will implement the Uniform Electronic Legal Material Act.  Senate Bill 3071 will clarify and add procurement authority to the Local Library Act and the Public Library District Act.  House Bill 3796 provides significant improvements to the Freedom of Information Act, including ILA's proposal regarding posting of information on the Internet.  The Illinois General Assembly also passed several other bills supported by ILA, including Senate Bill 3222 creating the Illinois Joining Forces foundation, and Senate Bill 3288, the Secretary of State's initiative allowing greater publication by electronic means.
 
There is still work to be done in seeking the Governor's approval for all these bills, but we are optimistic the Governor will support the library community as the Illinois General Assembly has done this session.  Thank you to all our 
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