Lightford052719SPRINGFIELD – To decrease the use of suspensions and expulsions for student discipline, Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford (D-Maywood) is leading legislation that requires school districts to report the number of days missed for disciplinary reasons.

“Losing time in the classroom has not proven to be a successful disciplinary measure for students,” Lightford said. “Our children have real issues that need addressing and taking a timeout is not going to help. They need access to resources that support their mental health, and get them on track to learn.”

House Bill 2084 requires the Illinois Board of Education to collect information from school districts on the amount of days missed to suspensions, how many arrest were made on school grounds and other related incidents for the board’s annual report.

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Category: News

Lightford052419SPRINGFIELD – Prison inmates who are required to serve most of their sentences could soon reduce them by successfully completing classes aimed at rehabilitation under a proposal led by Senate Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford (D-Maywood).

“We are working to increase participation in programs that prepare inmates for re-entry into our society,” Lightford said. “When we release people from the criminal justice system, they have a better chance of not returning to it if they can get their life back on track.”

Currently, individuals sentenced under truth-in-sentencing provisions, who are required to serve 85 percent or 100 percent of their sentence, are ineligible to receive sentencing credit for successful completion of classes with educational, substance abuse, vocational or re-entry focus.

Other incarcerated persons can currently receive additional sentence credits for engaging in full-time substance abuse programs, correctional industry assignments, educational programs, behavior modification programs, life skills courses or re-entry planning programs.

House Bill 94 allows for individuals serving a sentence for an offense committed before the enactment of truth-in-sentencing on June 19, 1998 to be eligible for good time sentence credits in the future and retroactively for completion of those programs.

Currently, the Director of the Department of Corrections can award an additional 180 days of good conduct credit to incarcerated individuals for compliance with rules or service to the public. The department is also required to provide an additional 90 days of sentence credit to any incarcerated person who passes high school equivalency testing while incarcerated.

The measure was approved by the Senate on Friday, and will head back to the House on concurrence.

Category: News

Rainbow PUSH CCTO Outreach FlyerThe Cook County Treasurer’s Office is extending its outreach effort at Rainbow PUSH Coalition, putting staff at the organization’s headquarters four days a week to assist homeowners with their property tax questions.

Category: News

Lightford050319SPRINGFIELD – More support for veterans struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder could be available under a measure led by Senate Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford (D-Maywood).

House Bill 2126 authorizes K9’s for Veterans to issue decals for the universal special license plate. The fees collected for issuing and renewing the plates would be deposited into the Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Awareness Fund to be used for support, education, and awareness of veterans with the disorder.

“Our veterans who are struggling with mental health issues need our support, and we are giving Illinoisans an opportunity to do so through the special license plate program,” Lightford said.

Applicants would be charged a $25 fee in addition to the standard registration fee each year the decal is renewed. The Universal Special License Plate was established in 2016 to allow drivers to support any organization who has been authorized for a decal. An organization that would like to create a decal for the universal plate must have at least 2,000 applications before the Secretary of State can approve their application for a universal plate.

The legislation was approved by the Senate Transportation Committee and will head to the full Senate for consideration.

Category: News

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