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Thursday, June 5, 2014

Update on Illinois Legislative Session

The Illinois Municipal League (IML) recently provided an excellent summary of the bills that affect municipalities that advanced (or did not) in the spring Illinois legislative session on its website.  We have reported on many of these bills in the past, and want to update you on the status of some of the more substantive bills that were introduced this session - you might want to pay particular attention to the first bill that would cap utility connection charges:

Bills that Passed Both Houses

Cap on Water and Sewer Tap-on Fees, SB 3507:  This bill would impose a cap on the amount a township or municipality can charge for water and sewer tap-ons or connections.  The maximum tap-on fee cannot exceed 1/6 of the estimated annual charges (or two months) for water and sewer services.  The IML estimates that this legislation could limit tap-on charges to less than $100 for single family homes. The bill passed both houses, and will take effect on January 1, 2015.  This could be a significant limitation on municipal authority, depending on the scope of the limitation (does it apply to all tap-on/connection charges or is it more limited in scope?) and how it might affect existing special service areas and special assessments.   

Access to IDOR Sales Tax Information, HB 3885:  This bill would provide non-home rule municipalities with the same access to sales tax information that home rule municipalities already have.  The bill passed both houses and has been sent to the Governor.

Attorneys Fees in Administrative Adjudications, SB 2829:  An amended form of this bill would allow a judge to award attorneys' fees to plaintiffs in administrative adjudication cases only if the decision by the municipal hearing officer was arbitrary and capricious.  If the plaintiff's appeal is frivolous, the judge can award attorneys' fees to the municipality.

FOIA Reform Bill, HB 3796:  We reported earlier this week on HB 3796 that would amend FOIA to include new regulations for "voluminous requests," among other changes.  That bill passed both chambers, and has gone to the Governor.     

Bills that Did Not Advance in Spring Session

Fire Department Minimum Manning Bill, HB 5485:  This bill, which we have reported on in the past, did not advance this session fortunately.  

Responsible Bidder Legislation, HB 924:  We reported on a recent amendment to this bill last week. Fortunately, this bill also did not advance in the spring session. 

Towing Rotation Bill, SB 2932:  This proposed legislation would require local police departments to maintain tow rotation lists of companies that meet or exceed specific requirements.  The legislation passed the House, but did not advance through the Senate.

Post Authored by Julie Tappendorf, Ancel Glink


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