Latest News


“Pop Tax”
This Wednesday the Cook County Board is meeting to consider action on an ordinance to repeal the controversial Sweetened Beverage Tax. In the short time since its botched implementation, the tax has been met with an overwhelmingly negative reception and there has been much public backlash.

I have spoken with many constituents about the negative effect this burdensome tax is having on their families and small businesses. I am a co-sponsor on 3 pieces of legislation to address the issue. House Bill 4082 filed by Rep McAuliffe(R) and HB 4083 filed by Rep. Mussman(D) would immediately repeal the tax and prevent any home rule community from imposing a tax on sweetened beverages based on volume sold. House Bill 4084 filed by Rep. Breen (R) goes a step further and prevents the implementation of a tax based on weight or volume of any purchase in a home rule municipality.

State Representative McDermed was recently appointed as the lone House Republican member to serve on the Sexual Assault Evidence Tracking and Reporting Commission. The commission was recently created when Governor Rauner signed House Bill 528 in to law in August. Rep. McDermed was the lead sponsor of the bill and shepherded the bill through the legislative process with unanimous votes in both the House and Senate.  

This task force will work together with the Illinois State Police to improve the processing and review of sexual assault evidence. It will bring together relevant actors from the state police, testing labs, local law enforcement, the court system, hospitals, and victim’s rights groups to discuss how to handle transfers of evidence, testing, payment for testing, and other important factors. The commission will also make sure that the courts, testing labs, and law enforcement are all adequately communicating with each other so that evidence does not get lost or end up creating a backlog crisis. 

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State Representative Margo McDermed served as Principal for a Day at a local middle school in the 37th district on Tuesday. Brian Horn, principal of Century Junior High School in Orland Park invited Rep. McDermed to serve as honorary school principle.

“Every time I get to serve as Principal for a Day, it's a treat. It is always a pleasure visiting our local schools and engaging with students,” said Rep. McDermed. “It really gives me a chance to see firsthand the great job our hardworking educators are doing and interacting with young students always inspires me as a legislator to ensure for them a quality education and bright future."

Rep. McDermed met with four classes of social studies students. She discussed the differences between state and federal government and went through the process of how a bill becomes a law. The students were eager to learn and asked questions about state government and current events.
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Senior Fair
This Thursday I am hosting my 3rd annual senior fair. This fair will feature numerous state and local vendors and will have helpful information for seniors and their caregivers. In addition, representatives from AT&T will put on a presentation about new legislation impacting land lines, new technology, and answer any and all questions.
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The fair is from 10am-noon on October 5th at the Frankfort Square Park District at 7540 W. Braemar Lane in Frankfort. The fair will have refreshments and is free and open to the public.
 
Property Tax Townhall
On Wednesday October 18th at 6pm I am hosting a property tax townhall with an overview of the property tax system and the appeals process. A better understanding of the tax assessment process and the rights of homeowners can help you and your family save your hard earned money. The main focus and presentation of the townhall will be on property taxes, but I will be available to answer any and all questions regarding state government. The event is co-hosted with Frankfort Township Assessor Joseph Kral and will be held at Mokena Public Library. It is open to all residents of the 37th district and will have information on both Will and Cook Counties.
 
Earlier today Governor Rauner signed House Bill 40, a bill which will open up Medicaid and state employee health insurance coverage to elective abortions. State Representative Margo McDermed (R-Mokena) released the following statement in response:

"I voted against House Bill 40 and urged the Governor on multiple occasions not to sign the bill. I am incredibly disappointed in his decision to ignore the facts of this bill. This is not about women's health, but instead is a measure that will dramatically increase taxpayer funding of elective abortions. His decision to sign the bill goes against his promise to legislators and his commitment to fiscal responsibility. I still support Governor Rauner's agenda, but I am very upset and discouraged by his actions today."

Springfield, IL… State Representative Margo McDermed (R-Mokena) filed legislation last week to further separate political party interests and state interests. House Bill 4097 says that no member of the General Assembly shall concurrently serve as the chairperson for a statewide political party.

“For a state legislator, a public servant, to head a state political party and essentially hold the purse strings isn’t right,” Rep. McDermed said. “It is an unnecessary and improper consolidation of power. For those two roles to go hand in hand, it naturally invites conflicts of interest and possible corruption.”

According to the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform, among the 100 current Republican and Democratic State Party chairs in the nation, only nine also currently serve as state legislators. Of the nine, only two also serve in their party’s legislative leadership. In Illinois, House Speaker Michael Madigan has served as the Illinois Democratic Party’s Chair since 1998. He is the only statehouse chamber leader, House Speaker or Senate President, in the United States to also be the head of his state’s political party.

State party chairmen dictate the message and strategy of their party. Perhaps most importantly, they also organize party members and control millions of dollars in campaign funds. According to Illinois Sunshine, the Democratic Party of Illinois has $3.1 million in cash and the political committee Friends of Michael J. Madigan has $2.6 million on hand. As Speaker of the House, Madigan also controls the legislative process.

“The role of a state representative, especially a House Speaker, is to represent the best interests of the state, not engage in politics,” Rep. McDermed continued. “While I do believe Speaker Madigan has used his dual role to further cement his power in this state, it is not just about him. State party chairmen are focused on the next election and wherever possible we need to separate politics from governance.”