SPRINGFIELD – To make local government more efficient and ease the property tax burden on her constituents, State Sen. Linda Holmes, D-Aurora, voted in favor of SB3, a bill that grants counties the ability to cut or consolidate local units of government. Previously, only DuPage, Lake, and McHenry Counties were able to consolidate local government units in this way. This bill extends that ability to all counties in the state.

“The property owners in my district have suffered under an increasingly large property tax burden over the years,” Holmes said. “Property taxes rise for numerous reasons, but one common-sense way to control and lower them is to grant local governments the ability to consolidate and eliminate unnecessary and wasteful units.”

With over 7,000 units of local government, Illinois has more than any other state in the country. This legislation is a step toward lowering that number and streamlining government.

Having passed the Senate as part of the “grand bargain” agreement, SB3 awaits the approval of the rest of the bills in the package before moving on to the House of Representatives.

Category: New Releases

SPRINGFIELD – Responding to Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s announcement that she will seek to lift the court order that mandates payment of state employees, State Senator Linda Holmes (D- Aurora) expressed her own frustration at the state’s lack of a budget.

“It seems that Governor Rauner, who made $188 million last year, does not understand the devastating impact that his decisions have on the people of Illinois,” Holmes said. “Instead of governing, he has waged an endless campaign against unions and the middle class. The governor has neglected his constitutional duty to present the legislature with a budget and he has vetoed every budget that we have presented him with, creating the ongoing crisis.”

Holmes refers to Article VIII, Section 2(a) of the Constitution of the State of Illinois, which states: “The Governor shall prepare and submit to the General Assembly, at a time prescribed by law, a State budget for the ensuing fiscal year.”

“Governor Rauner has placed our state in this precarious situation by holding the budget hostage to further his partisan agenda,” Holmes said. “With Attorney General Madigan’s announcement, we find ourselves heading toward a government shutdown if there is not a budget by February 28. The governor should start governing and do what is asked of him in the Illinois Constitution.”

The lack of a state budget has already had serious consequences for Illinois’ social service providers. Smart Steps, a community-based early childhood education organization with over 20 years of experience serving families in Aurora, was almost forced to close because the state government could not provide them the funding that they needed to pay their bills without a budget.

“After over two years, I'm still upset that Springfield has no budget,” said George Jones, a Smart Steps board member. “I hope that a budget can be approved soon, because social service providers have little to no financial reserves to wait seven or more months to be paid for vital services."

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Category: News

Dec. 20, 2016 - The Rockford Advocate | Original article

SPRINGFIELD – Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner, on Tuesday, signed Senate Bill 1488, legislation to extend the River Edge Redevelopment Zone Program. The program allows for an income tax credit to be awarded for the restoration and preservation of a qualified historic structure located in a River Edge Redevelopment Zone.

Senate Bill 1488 is effective immediately and extends the River Edge Redevelopment Zone Program for one year, to sunset on January 1, 2018. A River Edge Redevelopment Zone is a specific area designated by the State of Illinois in cooperation with a local government to safely revive and redevelop environmentally-challenged properties that will stimulate economic revitalization and create jobs in Illinois. River Edge Redevelopment Zones are located in Rockford, Aurora, Elgin, Peoria and East St. Louis. The program is administered at the state level by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.

“The Rivers Edge program has already helped preserve a local landmark in Aurora,” said State Sen. Linda Holmes (D-Aurora). “This program spurs economic development, repurposes historic structures, and creates jobs in the community. I am glad this important plan will be extended and know it will create even more opportunities for development.”

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Category: Latest

2016 02 05 Holmes groundbreakingAURORA — A plan that would extend an economic development program that this year aided in the rehabilitation of the old St. Charles Hospital in Aurora will become law. Put forth by State Reps. Linda Chapa LaVia and Stephanie Kifowit and advocated in the Illinois Senate by State Sen. Linda Holmes, the legislation was signed today by Gov. Bruce Rauner.

“The Rivers Edge program has already helped preserve a local landmark in Aurora. This program spurs economic development, repurposes historic structures, and creates jobs in the community,” said Holmes, D-Aurora. “I am glad this important plan will be extended and know it will create even more opportunities for development.”

The Rivers Edge Redevelopment Zone program designates areas in several cities throughout Illinois, including Aurora, as marked for tax credits tied to redevelopment. Developers used the program this past year as they repurposed the historic St. Charles Hospital for use as a new senior living center.

The legislation was Senate Bill 1488. It extends the sunset for the Rivers Edge program to the end of 2017.

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Category: New Releases

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