The 99th General Assembly met for a final two days before we said goodbye to old colleagues and hello to new ones at the inauguration of the 100th General Assembly. The ceremony took place at the University of Illinois in Springfield last Wednesday. Each General Assembly (GA) is a two year period and this GA will celebrate the State’s 200th year in 2018. Both the Senate and the House reelected their majority leaders; in the House it was Speaker Michael Madigan and Republican Leader Jim Durkin. It was an honor to be sworn in again as your representative down in Springfield.
Economic Development for a Growing Economy (EDGE) tax credits, which expired at the end of the year, are a major tool used by the executive branch to attract jobs to Illinois. The controversial program has been plagued with questions about its effectiveness and implementation. In the final days of the 99th GA, the EDGE tax credits were extended for four months to allow legislators time to tinker with the program. Since taking office the Governor has made minor changes to the tax credits in order to make them more effective, but it is up to the legislators to completely overhaul the incentivizing program and ensure we are getting results and not wasting any taxpayer money.