Elgin Capital HearingThe Subcommittees on Capital for the Senate Transportations and Appropriations II Committees held their fifth hearing at Gail Borden Public Library in Elgin Monday, hearing from interested groups about capital infrastructure needs in the area.

Representatives from local government, transportation experts, educators, labor organizations and other interested parties testified before the subcommittees about existing capital and needs that should be addressed in a potential bill to release funding for infrastructure improvements around the state.

“These hearings are allowing us to learn more about the challenges facing communities around the state and hear creative perspectives about how to pay for construction projects,” said State Senator Martin A. Sandoval (D-Chicago), Chair of the Transportation Committee. “We achieved both of those goals today and we’ll be sure to take the proposals we heard today into account as we develop a comprehensive construction plan.”

Illinois has not passed a capital bill in a decade. In 2018, the American Society of Civil Engineers gave Illinois a C- grade, saying the state’s transportation infrastructure shows signs of deterioration and faces increasing vulnerability.

“The condition of our roads and bridges is unacceptable and it’s time to reinvest in our public infrastructure,” Sandoval said. “This is a public safety issue and it needs to be addressed immediately.”

The subcommittees will hold three more hearings on the following dates:

  • Monday, April 29 in Chicago – Bilandic Building, 160 N. LaSalle St., Chicago
  • Friday, May 3 in Hainesville – Hainesville Village Hall, 100 Hainesville Rd., Hainesville
  • Thursday, May 9 in Springfield – Capitol Building

Green TieSPRINGFIELD – State Senator Martin A. Sandoval (D-Chicago) passed a measure Wednesday that would create a grant program aimed at preventing DUI offenses and supporting victims involved in DUI-related crashes.

“The deaths of two Illinois State Troopers in the last month have demonstrated just how serious of an issue safety on Illinois’ roads has become,” Sandoval said. “It’s time for immediate action to make Illinois a safer place to travel.”

Senate Bill 728 creates the DUI Prevention and Education Fund from which grants will be distributed to crash victim programs and materials, impaired driving prevention programs, law enforcement support and other DUI-related programs.

Funding for these grants will come from the Illinois Department of Transportation’s currently unused Roadside Memorial Fund. No additional revenue will be raised to pay for the program.

“With the availability of new ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft, there’s just no excuse for driving under the influence anymore,” Sandoval said. “It’s time to make drunk driving a thing of the past in Illinois.”

The measure passed the Illinois Senate 58-0. It will now go before the House of Representatives.

Sandoval high speed railSPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Senate passed a measure Wednesday sponsored by State Senator Martin A. Sandoval (D-Chicago) to create a commission that would explore opportunities to create a statewide high-speed rail network.

Senate Bill 1988 would create an 18 member High Speed Railway Commission comprised of representatives from state government and industry organizations that would create a plan to create a high-speed rail network connecting St. Louis with Chicago. The proposed route for the railway would pass through several Illinois cities, including Champaign, Decatur and Springfield.

“We’ve been considering a lot of ideas this session about how we can improve our transportation infrastructure and high speed rail may just be one of these solutions,” Sandoval said. “This commission would help us further examine the issue and determine whether new high speed rail lines are right for Illinois.”

The bill passed the Senate 54-0. It will now go before the House of Representatives.

Floor 2019SPRINGFIELD – A bill sponsored by State Senator Martin A. Sandoval (D-Chicago) that would help protect confidential documents submitted with driver’s license of identification card applications passed the Illinois Senate Wednesday.

“No one should have to fear that the personal information they submit to the state may end up in the wrong hands,” Sandoval said. “This is a simple, common-sense piece of legislation that will help ensure Illinoisans’ confidential information remains protected.”

Senate Bill 1344 prohibits confidential documents submitted to the Secretary of State for driver’s license or ID card applications from being released through the Freedom of Information Act. The measure provides that these confidential documents may only be released to the following parties:

  • The individual to whom the driver’s license or ID card was issued
  • Officers and employees of the Secretary of State in charge of issuing driver’s licenses and ID cards
  • Law enforcement officials for a criminal or civil law investigation
  • Any other entity the Secretary has authorized by rule

The measure will now go before the House of Representatives.


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