Legislative Update -- April 20, 2023

April 20, 2023

Springfield Update
House Bill 2789 passed the Illinois Senate Executive Committee. The bill now moves to the full Senate for a vote. Committees continue to consider bills that have passed out of their origination chamber.

Budget discussions have also continued with an expected revenue projection correction coming at the end of this month, which may have an effect on total FY2024 spending. That number will likely come in the next two weeks. 

The House and Senate will adjourn by May 19. We will keep you updated as the session continues. 

Right to Read Day
In response to the increasing censorship nationwide, ALA has designated April 24, as Right to Read Day, a national day of action to protect the freedom to read. As ALA President Lessa Kanani'opua Pelayo-Lozada put it, “Right to Read Day is a national day of action—not just acknowledgement. ALA calls on readers everywhere to show our commitment to the First Amendment by doing something concrete to preserve it.”  

To mark the one-year anniversary of Unite Against Book Bans and kick off National Library Week 2023, ALA is calling on its members and Unite partners to mobilize their respective networks to take action. Visit the Right to Read Day website for more information.

In addition to these calls to action, ALA and its Unite partners at PEN America and the National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) will host Protecting Free Expression and the Right to Read, a virtual conversation prompted by “Forever Judy Blume,” the new documentary about renowned author and right to read advocate Judy Blume. ALA President Pelayo-Lozada, PEN America CEO Suzanne Nossel, and NCAC Executive Director Christopher Finan will join the documentary’s co-directors to discuss Judy Blume’s trailblazing work and the unprecedented surge of censorship sweeping across the country. Registration is required for the free virtual event, which will take place Monday, April 24, at 7 p.m. ET / 4 p.m. PT. 

Broadband Listening Tour Sessions in Central Illinois
The Illinois Office of Broadband and Illinois Broadband Lab invites stakeholders to participate in upcoming events that will help inform the state’s plan for leveraging federal broadband funds from the historic Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. The federal Digital Equity (DE) program and Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) program may allocate more than $1B in funding to Illinois to accelerate high-speed internet access statewide and ultimately help close the digital divide. In preparation for this, the Illinois Office of Broadband, in partnership with the University of Illinois System, recently launched a series of local coordination efforts to gather input on broadband-related needs and priorities from a range of stakeholders.

How you can help:

  • Attend one of the sessions to share feedback on your library's experiences, barriers faced, needs and aspirations with broadband. Register here.

  • Spread the word and urge residents or community organizations to join the sessions. Here is a link to a flier that you can forward to the communities you serve or share on your social media channels!

  • Reach out to illinoisbroadbandlab@ullinois.edu with any questions or requests for assistance.

iREAD Summer Reading Programs

Since 1981, iREAD provides high quality, low-cost resources and products that enable local library staff to motivate children, young adults, and adults to read.

Visit the iREAD website »

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