News from Rockford, IL Democrats – more news at WinnDems.org.

Senator Stadelman's Weekly Bulletin - October 27, 2016




Framing complete on Indoor Sports Center expansion 
Construction workers and public officials including Senator Steve Stadelman gathered this week for a "topping off" ceremony at the Indoor Sports Center, where the last beam was lowered into place on a 133,000-square-foot expansion.

Stadelman passed legislation in his freshman year in the Illinois General Assembly in 2013 to provide a funding mechanism for $13 million in projects to help Rockford regain its dominance in the sports tourism market.



State funds help redesign dangerous Rockford road crossing
State Senator Steve Stadelman joined local officials to reopen the intersection of East State Street and Bell School Road this week. 
Reconstruction included the addition of sidewalks, walking paths and streetlights to an area frequented by pedestrians staying at several nearby hotels, where two Chinese businessmen were killed after being hit by an SUV nearly three years ago.
State funds helped pay for the $5.7 million project.

Stadelman backs bill to close executive ethics loophole
 
Cabinet-level appointees of the governor would be barred from using their official positions to sway elections under a bipartisan, good-government measure supported by Senator Steve Stadelman. 
The proposal reflects federal ethics rules that prohibit government employees from campaigning in their official capacities. It would apply to paid political ads but would not prohibit appointees from endorsing or otherwise supporting candidates on their own time as private citizens.
Campaign ads featuring state agency directors – including lawmakers who were appointed to cabinet-level positions by Gov. Bruce Rauner –  prompted the legislation. In the ads, the Rauner appointees endorse specific candidates and criticize challengers.
Nothing in current Illinois law prohibits them from identifying themselves as leaders of state agencies while campaigning for candidates who were appointed by Rauner to replace them in the General Assembly.
At least 43 other states have taken steps – called "little Hatch acts," a reference to the federal guidelines – to close similar ethics loopholes. Illinois is an outlier.

Stadelman urges renewal of housing tax credit
 
Senator Steve Stadelman is urging lawmakers to support a plan to renew an expiring state income tax credit that supports the development of much-needed low-income housing in Illinois.
The Illinois Affordable Housing Tax Credit gives a partial income tax credit to individuals, foundations or corporations that donate money to non-profit organizations that build affordable housing units. The credit will expire in December if it is not renewed by the General Assembly. Senator Steve Stadelman is a co-sponsor of legislation to extend it for five years.
Since the tax credit was established in 2000, more than $370 million has been donated to help construct more than 18,000 housing units for low-income households. The program has helped to sustain 27,000 jobs in 51 projects across the state.
Stadelman argues that the credit is among the smallest in Illinois but among the most effective incentives to create affordable.

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This Rockford Democrat blog features news and press releases from Rockford, IL Democratic officials and candidates for office.
It is a "lite" version of WinnDems.org.
Paul Gorski is the editor and posts the content. More information about local Democratic officials and candidates can be found at WinnDems.org (http://www.winndems.org)
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