05042017CM0445RSTINLEY PARK – State Senator Michael E. Hastings continues to fight for fair and secure elections in Illinois and he recently represented the state at a bipartisan conference hosted by the National Conference of State Legislators to address the matter.

Hastings was handpicked to participate in NCSL’s event on election security and how states can team up to protect voting processes. The event connected policymakers across the nation to exchange ideas on how to strengthen state laws to ensure the voting process this midterm elections is secure.

“Our democracy is built on open elections,” Hastings said. “Many have fought and given the ultimate sacrifice to assure our nation’s citizens’ voices are heard. We cannot afford to allow for foreign entities to hinder this sacred right.”

Hastings has been a strong voice in guaranteeing the Illinois State Board of Elections takes every necessary precaution to prevent hackers from accessing voters’ sensitive information.

Last election, the United State Department of Homeland Security confirmed Russian hackers were responsible for the malicious 2016 cyber-attack on the Illinois Voter Registration System database that compromised personal information for as many as 90,000 Illinois residents.

“It’s our duty to make sure our state’s policies and infrastructure meet the challenges and needs of the 21st century,” Hastings said. “The residents of Illinois need to have faith in the democratic process. It is absolutely imperative that the Illinois State Board of Elections take advantage of every possible resource to protect our state’s election infrastructure from intruders’ attacks.”

During the meeting, Hastings worked with election experts to learn about federal assistance and resources. A key theme was the role public officials play in bolstering voter confidence in elections based on setting security standards and utilizing best practices.

Category: Press Releases

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TINLEY PARK – Gov. Rauner vetoed a measure that would provide justice to the fourteen families who lost loved ones to a Legionnaire’s disease epidemic at the Illinois Veterans Home at Quincy.

Gov. Rauner vetoed State Senator Michael E. Hastings’ Senate Bill 2481 on Friday which would remove a $100,000 cap for state payouts in civil litigation. The measure will allow families greater restitution for the loved ones who died as a result of state negligence and mismanagement.

“It is no surprise that the governor decided to turn his back on our veterans—once again,” Hastings said. “We were trusted to care for these veterans in their golden years after their families already sacrificed so much during their times of service. The governor’s amendatory veto of SB 2841 is a direct reflection of his administration’s gross negligence, failure of leadership and ultimate guilt.”

A total of 14 people have died and more than 60 have fallen ill at the Quincy Home from exposure to the Legionella bacterium since August 2015.

“I cannot begin to comprehend the loss these families have had to go through,” Hastings said. “This measure was a small attempt to help them obtain justice for these awful circumstances. However, the governor’s actions have stalled the wheels of justice once again.”

Senate Bill 2481 passed the Senate and House with bipartisan support.

Hastings pledges to work with his colleagues to override the governor’s veto this fall.

Category: Press Releases

02162017CM0567rTINLEY PARK – A new law sponsored by State Senator Michael E. Hastings (D-Tinley Park) will bring Illinois alimony law up to date with recent developments in the tax code.

Hastings’ Senate Bill 2289 was signed into law Friday, creating a new formula for calculating the amount of alimony an individual should receive after a divorce.

The law was passed in response to the December 2017 federal income tax bill, which prohibits alimony or maintenance payments from being tax deductible for the payer or taxable for the recipient.

“This law institutes responsible and fair changes to Illinois’ divorce laws,” Hastings said. “Courts cannot continue to award the same amount considering the fact there is no longer a tax deduction available to the payer.”

When the tax burden shifts on Jan. 1, 2019, this law will take effect and make modifications to reduce maintenance payments to reflect the tax adjustment. It will not affect previous settlements unless there is a finding of a considerable change in conditions that deserves application of the changes.

Senate Bill 2289 is an initiative of the Illinois State Bar Association and will take effect Jan. 1, 2019.

Category: Press Releases

March4 RS
TINLEY PARK—Starting Jan. 1, 2019, Illinois law will require children under the age of two to be properly secured in a rear-facing child restraint seat.

The measure, sponsored by State Sen. Michael E. Hastings (D-Tinley Park) was signed into law Friday.

“Public safety is our number one priority as lawmakers and this measure will ensure our children are safe should disaster strike,” Hastings said.
A 2007 study in the Injury Prevention Journal found that children under age two are 75 percent less likely to die or to be severely injured in a crash if they are in rear-facing seats.

House Bill 4377 requires anyone transporting a child under two years old to secure the child in a rear-facing seat unless the child weighs 40 or more pounds or is more than 40 inches tall.

“One life lost is too many,” Hastings said. “We have solid evidence that will help us save lives. It’s our job as parents to utilize best practices and protect the lives of our children.”

The American Academy of Pediatrics states rear-facing child safety seats give better support to the head, neck and spine of infants by distributing the force of the collision over the entire body.

House Bill 4377 passed the Senate and House with bipartisan support.

Category: Press Releases

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CONTACT SENATOR HASTINGS

Welcome to the official website of Senator Michael E. Hastings. Please fill out our contact form to contact Senator Hastings directly or you may call any of our offices. We look forward to hearing from you.

Springfield Office:
118 Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-9595

East Office:
813 School Ave
Matteson, IL 60443

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Frankfort, IL 60423
(815) 464-5431

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