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Senate Grand Bargain Negotiations

Over the past few days, many constituents in my district have received robo-calls from organizations informing them to contact my office to oppose potential tax increases being negotiated in the Senate Grand Bargain proposal. Bipartisan conversations in the Senate are ongoing; however, in the House chamber, we have not achieved similar fluid communication.

Below please find some of the new revenue items being negotiated by the Senate:
Rep. Joe Sosnowski
SPRINGFIELD State Representative Joe Sosnowski (R-Rockford) expressed support today for Governor Bruce Rauner’s intention to veto the controversial House Bill 40, which was approved by the Illinois House of Representatives on Tuesday by a vote of 62-55. The legislation would remove the existing ban on taxpayer-funded abortion with no restrictions through the state’s Medicaid program.

“Proponents of House Bill 40 claim it improves access to reproductive health care for women, but the facts tell a different story,” Sosnowski said. “The legislation actually diminishes protections for pregnant women by removing basic health care standards, preventing women from being provided basic information and denying all rights to unborn children.  We need to reevaluate what it means to protect women and children, because it is clear House Bill 40 is not the answer.”
Rep. Joe Sosnowski
By Joe Sosnowski
State Representative, 69th District

In business, job creators and entrepreneurs compete to provide the best product or service at a good value for consumers. Unfortunately, when it comes to state government, meaningful efforts to lower costs and increase value to taxpayers are too often met with viral opposition. Let me give you a current example:

Illinois’ prison inmate population has declined over 9 percent since January 2015; yet that has not stopped the Illinois General Assembly from advancing legislation that would strip the governor's ability to reduce staffing levels at state prisons. Senate Bill 19, currently pending in the Illinois House of Representatives, would mandate a headcount for personnel at the Department of Corrections (DOC) and wipe out $8 million in annual savings to taxpayers. This action essentially allows the union to manage the employees; this is an inherent conflict of interest. 

This legislation was hastily filed after the Governor announced most corrections nurses would be transitioned to a private contractor already working for the state to streamline medical services; a move that would save the state $8 million annually mostly through a reduction in benefit costs. 
Click HERE to download the application for Representative Sosnowski's Summer Legislative Internship Program!

In the Rockford area alone, there are over 30,000 people without a high school diploma or GED. Rep. Joe Sosnowski (R-Rockford) is proactively working to remedy this challenge by sponsoring a bill that would give adult learners the opportunity to complete their high school education. The Excel Center has proven to be a premier example of how to achieve this shared goal.

Rep. Sosnowski was joined at a press conference in Rockford today by Goodwill Industries of Northern Illinois, Rock Valley College and Lt. Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti to highlight House Bill 2527

To learn more about Rep. Sosnowski's bill and what it could mean for the Rockford area, please click HERE.
(Left to right) State Representative Joe Sosnowski, Kim Ryder from Goodwill of Central Arizona, Lt. Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti, President Sam Schmitz of Goodwill Industries of Northern Illinois, and President of Rock Valley College Dr. Doug Jensen.

Rep. Joe Sosnowski speaks during
debate on House Bill 3784
SPRINGFIELD The Illinois House of Representatives has approved legislation sponsored by State Representative Joe Sosnowski (R-Rockford) to make achieving a high school diploma more attainable for students who are struggling academically or those who have truancy issues. Under current Illinois law, a school or school district can deny enrollment to a student 17 years of age or older for one semester for failure to meet minimum academic standards, under certain conditions.  Representative Sosnowski’s legislation, House Bill 3784, would remove those provisions from state law. 

The bill also raises the standard for addressing students with school attendance issues by providing that a truant minor may not be expelled for nonattendance unless he or she has accrued 15 consecutive days of absences without valid cause and the student cannot be located by the school district; or the school district has located the student but cannot, after exhausting all available support services, compel the student to return to school.

“The concept behind my bill is simple; a school district should not be able to drop a student from enrollment for academic reasons,” Rep. Sosnowski said. “We have some of the finest and most dedicated educators in the state right here in Winnebago and Boone Counties. I have confidence in them to help struggling students improve their academic standing and prepare them for success after high school. We also need to give truant students every possible opportunity to stay in school and complete their education. We have a moral responsibility not to give up on them.”
Representative Joe Sosnowski's office participated in the Stateline Chamber of Commerce 21st annual "RoRo Expo" April 1-2 in Roscoe. Team Sosnowski had a booth to provide state brochures and literature about state programs and resources for residents of Winnebago and Boone Counties. Several thousand local families attended the weekend event. The 69th District is home to many outstanding local businesses, entrepreneurs and service providers; all showcased at this year's RoRo Expo.