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Government Affairs Reports

  

March 31, 2017

This Week In Springfield

CHAMBER DEFENDS IL TECH INDUSTRY, SMALL BIZ 

Cloaked under the description of “privacy” legislation, a package of bills under consideration in Springfield take solid aim at two of the state’s key economic performers – the burgeoning tech industry in Chicago and small businesses throughout all of Illinois.

This week, the new House Cybersecurity, Data Analytics & IT Committee met to take action on two pieces of legislation that are being championed by a powerful class action law firm that would prove to not just be onerous and costly to every business operating online, but repel tech industry from investment and expansion in Illinois in the future.

HB 2774 (Turner), also known as the “Right to Know” bill, would require companies to provide advance notice in a privacy policy of any possible disclosure of a broad range information to a third party.  HB 2774 and its Senate companion SB 1502, would require any business with a website – even a local flower shop or pizza parlor — to draft privacy policies longer and more confusing than anything required by existing law and to create new IT systems – at best, a complex and expensive undertaking; at worst, literally impossible to implement – to respond to consumer requests under threat of liability.

What’s more, any error would void the business’s entire contract with consumers, subjecting the business to an onslaught of liability completely unrelated to the likely unintentional violation.

Tyler Diers, director of legislative relations at the Chamber, testified in opposition to the bill and cautioned members of the committee that passing such a law would burden small businesses and stifle future investment from venture capital in Illinois.

HB 2774 did pass along partisan roll call, but is expected to come back to committee for further debate.  The Chamber has and will be apart of upcoming negotiations with stakeholders.  If anyone is interested or has any questions or concerns about the bills, please email Tyler Diers.

WHY BUY “NORTH AMERICAN” IS WRONG FOR IL

This week, Chamber vice president of policy Ben Brockschmidt testified in opposition to a HB 795 (Halpin).  This bill would prevent the state of Illinois from buying or leasing vehicles assembled outside of the United States and Canada.

While promoting ‘Made in America’ products taps into a popular sentiment, such a bill would have adverse impact on taxpayers, trading partners, and manufacturers in Illinois.

American and Illinois manufacturers and suppliers – who sometime provide more than half of the parts for vehicles not made in the US or Canada – would take a hit.

In addition, reducing the supply of vehicles state government can choose when purchasing ultimately increases the cost of other available options – thus passing the cost onto Illinois taxpayers.

Not to mention, the title of the bill is “Buy North America” but the bill prohibits the purchase of vehicles assembled in Mexico.  Illinois ranks 5th among the 50 states for exports to Mexico and 4th in imports from our friends just south of the border.  This bill would strain relations with one of our strongest trading partners and could cause retaliation by Mexico to other Illinois sectors such as agriculture.

Proponents of the bill claim this is a pro-union solution, however the state could still purchase non-union vehicles made in southern states from Toyota, Honda or Volkswagen.

The bill passed out of the House State Government Committee 4-3-0 and now heads to the House floor.

THIS WEEK’S LEGISLATIVE RECAP 

The House and Senate were both in session this week.  See below for a highlight of this week’s legislative action in Springfield.

Tax

HB 3393 (Welch) amends the Illinois Income Tax Act to impose a privilege tax at a rate of 20% on partnerships and S corporations engaged in the business of conducting investment management services, until such time as a federal law with an identical effect has been enacted. Provides for the determination of the tax due; defines “investment management services.” We oppose this legislation and we registered our opposition to the committee.  The bill passed out of the committee on a partisan vote with all of the Democrats voting in favor of the bill.

Healthcare & Insurance

HB 1332 (Fine) passed out of House Insurance Committee on partisan leave. This legislation that would mandate insurance coverage for eating disorders. The Chamber is opposed to the bill.

HB 2436 (Flowers) passed out of Health Care Availability & Accessibility Committee. The bill would create the Medicare for All Act. The Chamber is opposed to the bill.

Energy & Environment

HB 3042 (Hoffman) passed out of House Energy Committee. The bill creates a Qualified Clean Coal Technology Grant Program to help fund clean coal facility projects.

Transportation & Infrastructure

HCA 1 to HB 2747 (Zalewski) passed favorably out of the House Transportation: Vehicles & Safety committee. This amendment provides that a fully autonomous vehicle may drive or operate upon the highways of this State, regardless of whether a human operator is physically present in the vehicle. The Illinois Chamber of Commerce supported this legislation.

ODDS AND ENDS – NEW AMENDMENTS 

What is considered procedure at the Illinois Statehouse, lawmakers file amendments to empty bills or replace old bills with completely new language.  Below is a short list of new amendments that are now on the Chamber’s radar.

HFA 1 to HB 1274 (Turner) would provide limit the amount a financial institution can charge for an ATM withdraw to $1.  The bill is posted for House Consumer Protection Committee for April 5.  The Chamber will be opposed to this bill.

HCA 1 to HB 2353 (Cassidy) and SFA 1 to SB 316 (Steans) would provide for the regulation and taxation of cannabis for those above the age of 21 in Illinois.

REGISTER NOW FOR EMPLOYER ACTION DAY!

Registration is now open for this year’s Employer Action Day.  This year’s event will take place on Wednesday, April 26 from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM at the Wyndam in Springfield.  The event will feature a keynote from Gov. Rauner, members from ALEC and the US Chamber, Illinois Secretary of Education Beth Purvis, and more!  Don’t miss this opportunity to add your voice to the business communities largest lobby day in Illinois. Register now!

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