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SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Michael E. Hastings voted in favor of a package of legislation that would modernize Illinois’ infrastructure, providing the South Suburbs with much needed job creation and additional revenue.

“It is our job as lawmakers to ensure the needs of the communities we represent are met, and overall the South Suburbs stand to benefit immensely from this capital plan,” Hastings (D-Tinley Park) said. “Our schools will be receiving sorely needed maintenance, our roads and bridges will be modernized and we will be able to reap the financial benefits the gaming industry can provide for our community.”

Currently, 2,300 bridges around the state are rated structurally deficient, including the I-80 bridge in Joliet. This landmark legislation will work to fix this problem.

“Prolonging a capital plan is simply inviting tragedy to strike. During this spring session, we sought solutions in order to update our infrastructure so it is safe to use for the millions of individuals who frequent Illinois roads,” Hastings said. “By approving the capital plan, we have been able to accomplish that while also creating new, good-paying jobs.”

Under this capital plan, the South Suburbs would also be eligible to build a casino and racetrack in the future, providing the area with revenue while simultaneously cementing the community as a statewide destination.

Category: Press Releases

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SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Michael E. Hastings voted today to approve a fiscally responsible state budget for the upcoming year, paving the way for a return to stability in Illinois.

“With this budget we’ve made smart investments in education and human services, while also ensuring our pension obligations have been made,” Hastings (D-Tinley Park) said. “We had to demonstrate to working families that we’re on their side, and I feel we’ve accomplished that.”

The proposed budget would fully fund the evidence-based formula, allocate an additional $50 million for early childhood education and double funding for higher education. MAP grants would also receive $50 million increase over last year in an effort to provide postsecondary education options for students.

“By increasing funding for higher education and MAP grants, we’ve adopted disciplined approach to incentivize students to stay in Illinois should they choose to pursue a college education.” Hastings said. “Students at every level need to know that we’re prioritizing them and striving to give them the best possible education opportunities.”

Additionally, nearly $30 million in additional funding is included to increase eligibility for the Child Care Assistance Program to provide reliable child care for working families.

Pension obligations would also be made for the seventh year in a row.

“In a broader sense, it’s a relief to see our state on a new path toward normalcy,” Hastings said. “We have only just begun to repair the carnage left to us by the Rauner administration, but I’m encouraged by the action we in the legislature have taken to earn back the trust of the people of Illinois.”

Category: Press Releases

 05272019CM0523

SPRINGFIELD – In an effort to provide the state with a much needed revenue boost State Senator Michael E. Hastings voted in favor of legislation that would legalize the purchase and possession of cannabis for Illinois residents starting in January 2020.

“Due to the fiscal disaster left to us by the previous administration, it’s important to discuss all possible revenue sources. Legalization of cannabis provides us with a unique opportunity to bolster our revenue streams,” Hastings (D-Tinley Park) said. “We’ve also ensured that communities across the state have greater control over whether or not they want cannabis in their community, and if they do they’re able to regulate its use heavily.”

Tax revenue brought in by legalization would be allocated as such:
• 2% for public education and safety campaigns
• 8% for law enforcement funds for prevention and training to be distributed through the Local Government Distributive Fund formula
• 25% for Recover, Reinvest, and Renew (R3) Program
• 20% for programs that address preventative substance abuse programs and mental health services
• 10% for the bill backlog
• 35% to or the remaining amount the General Revenue Fund

Local towns and municipalities will retain significant power to decide how cannabis businesses may or may not fit into their communities, including the ability to opt out completely or enact zoning ordinances that regulate where and when cannabis can be used.
Under this legislation, employers would be also able to maintain a zero-tolerance policy for their work place. Additionally, landlords would retain full rights regarding cannabis use on their property.

This legislation now moves to the House on concurrence.

Category: Press Releases

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SPRINGFIELD – Disabled veterans would see lower costs on license plate registration fees under legislation by State Senator Michael E. Hastings that passed the Senate today.

“License plate registration fees can be costly, and considering the sacrifice these brave men and women made, waiving those fees is the least we can do to express our gratitude,” Hastings (D-Tinley Park) said.

HB 2618 allows any veteran with at least 50% of their disability having been determined to stem from service-related injuries to obtain any military series license plate without a registration fee.

“Illinois currently offers a wide variety of military-related license plates, and the only one disabled veterans can receive without registration fees is the disabled veteran license plate,” Hastings said. “If you’ve served your country and are living with any sort of disability as a result of that service, you ought to be able to represent yourself in a way that reflects your service beyond your disability without registration fees.”

This legislation awaits the governor’s signature to become law.

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

District Office:
20855 South LaGrange Road
Frankfort, IL 60423
(815) 464-5431

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