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Senator Stadelman's Weekly Bulletin - August 29,2016

Rauner's inaction jeopardizing Rosecrance triage: Stadelman
State Senator Steve Stadelman last week called for public pressure on Governor Bruce Rauner for refusing to fund the Rosecrance Mulberry Center, which provides medical triage for people with mental illnesses. Stadelman focused on the Rauner administration after Rosecrance announced that further delays in state funding would cause Rosecrance to close its triage program. 

"It's a good facility, a good program, it saves the state and community money, and it needs to continue," Stadelman said. "The state needs to keep its funding commitment to this facility."

Stadelman said funding for the triage center was included in the stopgap budget approved in June, but Rauner has chosen not to release the money. In fiscal years 2013, 2014 and 2015, following the closure of Singer Mental Health Center, previous administrations used Eligibility and Disposition Assessment grant money to pay for triage, according to Stadelman.
"That EDA money was contained in the spending plan we approved in June; however, the Rauner administration so far has refused to award Rosecrance a contract to operate the triage center," Stadelman said. "It is worth noting that the governor also zeroed out money for these mental health services in both his proposed 2016 and 2017 budgets."

Illinois to repeal "pink tax"
Legislation to repeal sales taxes on feminine hygiene products including tampons and menstrual pads will become law Jan. 1. State Senator Steve Stadelman was a cosponsor of the bill, which the governor signed into law earlier this month. The law will exempt tampons, pads and menstrual cups from the statewide 6.25 percent sales tax – the same tax classification as products like shampoo.

Greater protection for children in police custody
Children questioned in police custody about certain crimes must have an attorney present for the interrogation under a bill that received bipartisan support in the legislature and has been signed into law. State Senator Steve Stadelman voted in favor of requiring any youth 15 or younger to have an attorney present when questioned by police about murder or sex offenses and requiring police to recite a simplified Miranda warning.

Previously, only minors younger than 13 were required to be accompanied by an attorney for such interrogations. The change was prompted by the 2013 case of a teenager with diminished cognitive ability who was arrested by St. Clair County deputies, questioned about a robbery and coerced into a confession without his mother or an attorney present. Trevon Yates was charged with armed robbery and spent nine months in jail before the charges were dismissed and additional evidence cleared him of wrongdoing. He later sued in federal court and was awarded a $900,000 settlement.

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