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Springfield Snapshot, April 15-19, 2013

With just seven weeks left in session, the Illinois General Assembly met again in Springfield this week. CMAP has been tracking over 350 bills this session, but only a fraction of those are still active. Friday, April 19 marks the next deadline for pending legislation in the Illinois House of Representatives -- bills that originated in the House must pass third-reading deadlines. On Wednesday, April 25, bills originating in Illinois Senate must pass a corresponding deadline. Bills that do not meet those deadlines require approved extensions from House and Senate leadership to advance through the legislative process. The following Policy Update discusses action from the week of April 15-19.

State Budget
This week, both chambers convened committees to consider proposed Fiscal Year 2014 budget allocations for the state's numerous departments and institutions. On Wednesday, the Illinois House Appropriations Public Safety Committee met to discuss the proposed budget appropriations for the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) and the Illinois State Toll Highway Authority. The Illinois House Appropriations General Services Committee also met on Wednesday to discuss the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) budget. On Thursday, the Illinois Senate Appropriations II committee discussed IDNR's budget proposal.

2014-19 Multi-Year Transportation Program
The Governor and IDOT released its multi-year program this week, totaling nearly $12.62 billion in capital construction over five years. The program includes major projects, such as the Circle Interchange and the Illiana Expressway, as well as maintenance on existing infrastructure. CMAP will provide a more detailed review of this proposal in an upcoming Policy Updates blog.

Bills Directly Affecting CMAP
Two bills with direct impacts on CMAP continue to advance through the legislative process. The first (SB 1594) would merge the Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) and CMAP, calling for the formation of a transition committee to develop detailed plans to integrate staff and operations. Status: SB 1594 is sitting on third reading in the Senate.

The second bill (HB 3199) requires the Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability to hold a hearing within 30 days after the Governor's Budget Address to the General Assembly to consider CMAP's annual report and its impact on the State budget. Status: HB 3199 was assigned to Senate Transportation Committee.

Other Bills Acted on This Week
RTA Board Benefits Elimination (HB 140) eliminates compensation and pension benefits for RTA board members. Status: Arrived in the Senate and awaits assignment.

Illinois Urban Development Authority (HB 1295) amends the Illinois Urban Development Authority Act to allow for the development, financing, and maintenance of transportation projects. Status: Assigned to the Senate Local Government Committee.

Water and Sewer Utilities Value (HB1379) provides an alternative procedure that a large public utility may choose in establishing the ratemaking base of water or sewer utility that the large public utility is acquiring. Status: Passed out of House.

RTA Issuance of Bonds (HB 1389) extends the deadline for the RTA to sell additional Working Cash Notes that are over and above and in addition to the $100 million authorization to July 1, 2016 from its current deadline of 2014. Status: Assigned to Senate Transportation Committee.

Stormwater Management (HB 1522) allows DuPage and Peoria Counties to impose user fees for stormwater management. Status: Sitting third reading in the Senate. CMAP supports this legislation.

Urban Composting(HB 2335) allows compost piles of up to 25 cubic yards to be exempt from permit. Removes limits to certain Chicago permitted facilities. The bill also allows for on-farm composting exemptions to urban/suburban areas on up to two percent of their property with materials brought off site. Status: Sitting third reading in the House.

RTA Fare Increase Hearings (HB 2453) requires both the Mass Transit Committee in the House and the Transportation Committee in the Senate to hold a public hearing regarding any increase in the revenue recovery ratio or any increase in fares or charges for public transportation. Status: Arrived in the Senate and awaits assignment.

Road Fund-No Transfers (SB 29) prohibits sweeps of funds intended for roads or mass transit. Status: Assigned to Senate Subcommittee on Special Issues.

Counties Affordable Housing (SB 1244) establishes an Affordable Housing Trust Fund pilot program in Lake County. The legislation also gives Lake County the authority to impose a $3 recording fee on real estate transactions to be deposited in a trust fund. Status: Sitting third reading in the Senate. CMAP supports this legislation.

Township - Singular Dissolution (SB1585) provides a process by which a single township within a county under township organization could dissolve.Amendments limit the provisions to townships within a coterminous, or substantially coterminous, municipality in which the City Council exercises the powers and duties of the township board, or in which one or more municipal officials serve as an officer or trustee of the township. Status: Arrived in the House.

Transportation Design-Build (SB 1647) creates a demonstration program for design-build (DB) and construction manager/general contractor (CM/GC) project delivery approaches. The bill allows IDOT to enter into as many as five DB contracts and five CM/GC contracts. The Act allows IDOT greater flexibility in delivering projects and achieving cost and time savings. Status: Senate Committee deadline extended to April 19, 2013.