Mayfield Reflects on Successful Spring Legislative Session


SPRINGFIELD, IL - On Thursday, state Rep. Rita Mayfield (D-Waukegan) completed her second spring legislative session in the Illinois House of Representatives reflected on some of the measures she helped pass to continue the process of putting the state back on track.

"I am pleased that members of the Illinois House have joined together in a completely bipartisan spirit to follow through on their pledge to create a more fiscally reasonable state government that more effectively lives within our means," said Mayfield. "The state budgeting plan that members of the House laid out earlier in the session is quite simple: take care of our state's obligations and backlog of unpaid bills before anything else. By following this common sense formula, lawmakers were able to dedicate $1.3 billion toward paying down Illinois" unpaid bills to reduce its debt, and cut nearly $1 billion from the state budget."

Mayfield also helped pass House Bill 3188, legislation that rejects cost-of-living increases for legislators. The proposal also requires legislators to take twelve unpaid furlough days. In addition, the legislation prevents cost-of-living adjustment for state's attorneys, constitutional officers, agency directors and members of boards and commissions.

"At a time when so many of our working families and other residents are having such a difficult time making ends meet, state legislators should not be exempt from sharing in these sacrifices," said Mayfield. "That why for the past two years I have served as state representative, have voted to cut my own pay."

Mayfield has also been an outspoken advocate for legislation that seeks to create more fairness in our society and protections for those who cannot protect themselves. Some noteworthy measures that Mayfield sponsored or supported include:

- House Bill 5187, which requires the curriculum for probationary officers to include training that teaches officers how to effectively communicate with crime victims at the initial contact with the victim, and how to explain the victim and witnesses their rights under the Rights of Crime Victims and Witnesses Act and the Violent Crime Victim-s Assistance Act. Passed the House and Senate and now moves to the governor for his consideration;

- Senate Bill 3433, which ensures that criminal offenses that have been pardoned and expunged will not be disclosed by the Illinois State Police, any entities other than the initial arresting agency, the State's Attorney, or the court following an arrest for a similar felony for the purpose of sentencing. Passed the House and Senate and now moves to the governor for his consideration;

- House Bill 3782, which prohibits an employer from asking any employee or prospective employee to provide any password or other related account information in order to gain access to the employee's or prospective employee's account or profile on a social networking website where the employee maintains a profile. Passed the House and Senate and now moves to the governor for his consideration;

- Senate Bill 2621, which re-establishes and expands upon IDOC's early release program for prison inmates who demonstrate good behavior and enrollment in certain educational or behavioral courses. For purposes of reducing an inmate's sentence due to good behavior, the bill creates sentence credits (rather than "good conduct credits") and sets forth additional criteria for an inmate to earn sentence credits and an early release from prison. Passed the House and Senate and now moves to the governor for his consideration;

- Senate Bill 2559, which requires a treatment provider to arrange with the court to transport a mentally incompetent defendant to a county jail facility within 14 days, if the treatment provider believes that the defendant has obtained fitness to stand trial, and requires the Illinois Sheriff's Association and DHS to issue reports to the Governor regarding the efficiency of transferring criminal defendants from mental health facilities to court for a fitness hearing. Passed the House and Senate and now moves to the governor for his consideration;

- House Resolution 1072, which acknowledges the continuing challenges facing our nation's workforce and importance of workforce development training and professional education in training our workforce for future employment. The measure further recognizes the importance of: business community to provide input on curricula and offer work-based learning opportunities; businesses working together to provide innovation and good management practices; businesses developing skill certifications to enhance workers' ability to succeed in today's knowledge-based, global economy; and training providers to have first-hand knowledge of employers' skills needs as they train low-income workers and give them a chance at pathways out of poverty. Passed adopted by the House;

- House Bill 4606, which protects the health of youngsters in day care facilities and requires day care centers to test their facilities for radon at least once every three years. Additionally, new facilities must prove they have been tested for radon within the last three years before receiving a license to operate. Passed the House and Senate and now moves to the governor for his consideration;

- Senate Bill 2450,which reallocates funding to daycare facilities to ensure they did not close, which would have created a burden on the working parents of young children. This did not increase spending in either the Fiscal Year 2012 or Fiscal Year 2013 budgets because funding was simply moved from one area to the Child Care Assistance Program. Signed into law.

Mayfield was also instrumental in helping to restore vital funding to the prevention of HIV, DCFS to protect children in foster care, and to maintaining funding to domestic violence shelters and keeping families together.

"As lawmakers continue to make progress towards fixing our state's budgeting and fiscal situation, I pledge to keep fighting to make our state government a leaner, yet not a meaner state government, by looking out for the people who need a little additional help," said Mayfield. "In the coming weeks, I plan on meeting with my constituents to ask for their input on progress lawmakers have made this session and the challenges we still face."

For more information please contact Mayfield's Full-Time Constituent Service Office at (847) 599-2800.

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