Sandoval DCEO webSPRINGFIELD – Advocates for small business are calling on Gov. Bruce Rauner to better implement a law he signed but has thus far neglected to enforce.

State Senator Cristina Castro (D-Elgin) sponsored a law to ensure businesses benefiting from tax credits are taking care to do business with companies that are minority- or woman-owned. The legislation requires any business receiving an EDGE tax credit report on its supplier diversity numbers to the state.

While the bill passed the Illinois Senate unanimously and met little opposition in the House, Gov. Rauner’s hand-picked agency heads have chosen to apply the law to new applicants for the tax credit only, rather than all existing applicants.

“It’s outrageous that Gov. Rauner would sign this bill then instruct his departments to act like it doesn’t exist,” Castro said. “We passed this legislation to get a better look at our state’s strengths and weaknesses in terms of encouraging economic diversity, and there’s no way we can do that if the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity does not enforce compliance with the law.”

While the law requires each EDGE credit claimant to submit an annual report containing supplier diversity information by April 15 each year, none have been provided to the DCEO. Those reports are required to include a plan to increase diverse participation, the areas each company is looking to improve, a plan to encourage potential vendor participation, an explanation of challenges faced in finding quality vendors and how the commission can help obtain them and more.

State Senator Martin A. Sandoval (D-Chicago) has called several hearings on supplier diversity in recent months, and he said the agency’s lack of compliance is par for the course when it comes to supplier diversity.

“We spend all this time passing legislation to advance the cause of supplier diversity, yet the state’s department heads refuse to comply,” Sandoval, co-chair of the Latino Caucus, said. “At some point, the governor has to enforce this compliance from his agency directors or we are going to have to pass legislation giving the General Assembly greater authority to enforce compliance.”

Sandoval has scheduled another meeting of the Special Committee on Supplier Diversity for from 12:30-4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 27 at the Bilandic building in Chicago.

“We’re going to continue to apply the pressure,” Sandoval said. “Because I’m sick of hearing the excuses for why companies receiving tax breaks from the state can’t find any minorities worthy of working for them.” 

Sandoval Stern WebIllinois’ resistance must start with Gov. Rauner

CHICAGO – State Senator Martin A. Sandoval (D-Chicago) has urged all elected officials from the local dog catcher to the U.S. Senate to condemn President Donald Trump’s calamitous and farcical meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin this week.

“I speak specifically to my Republican friends when I say our country needs you right now. No matter who you are or at what level you serve, our nation needs you to denounce this president and his actions in the strongest terms,” Sandoval said. “What we witnessed not just in Helsinki but during the president’s appearance before NATO was not just horrifying, but dire.

“In the coming days we need to speak in solidarity against what transpired, and I call on Gov. Bruce Rauner to lead the way in Illinois. His voice could prove an important and powerful one as a rebuke of the leader of his own party. Sadly, he chose just last week to give his formal endorsement to the Trump administration.”

The Putin summit in Helsinki came just days after Trump insulted the U.K. Prime Minister and endorsed a potential challenger because of her handling of the country’s exit from the European Union. He also insulted London’s mayor and disparaged NATO allies while on a “diplomatic” visit.

Putin, Russia’s long-serving tyrannical president and former KGB operative, received much warmer treatment from Trump, who told the world he valued Putin’s advice more than that of U.S. intelligence agencies.

It was also recently proven that Illinois voter databases were hacked in 2016 in Russia’s attack on U.S. election systems.

“Any claims that Trump was acting diplomatically are outrageous when you look at the tone of the rest of the trip,” Sandoval said. “He tore down our allies and fawned over Putin, who we know has aimed direct, ongoing attacks at our democracy. Any efforts he makes in the coming days to retract or explain his miserable performance must be cast aside for what they are: lies.”

Sandoval said it is more important than ever that Trump release his tax returns and divulge any business dealings or other connections with Putin and Russia.

“The pathetic, groveling way the president carried himself in this meeting cannot be explained without the assumption that Putin has some type of dirt on Trump or Trump has some sort of investment in Russia,” Sandoval said. “I don’t know what it is, but these ties must be sinister and they must be strong, because our President debased himself and our nation in front of the world, and that was during his public press conference. I can’t imagine what they talked about when the doors were closed. ”

Office Info

Springfield Office:
Senator 12th District
111 Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706

District Office:
5807 W. 35th Street
Cicero, IL 60804