Grand Bargain
The topic on everyone’s mind in Springfield continues to be the budget. The Senate, not in session last week, is scheduled to take votes this week on the bills that compose the “grand bargain”.  It will then be up to the House if this effort is to move forward. The House has thus far made no efforts to throw its hat in to the budget ring. No House Appropriations committees have met and expected state revenues, a jumping off point for appropriating money, have not been discussed. 

AFSCME Moves Closer to Strike
AFSCME, which represents 38,000 Illinois state government employees, stated that 81% of the workers who participated in a recent advisory ballot voted to authorize a possible strike. Around 28,000 members were eligible to participate in the authorization vote; most of the other workers are employed in jobs at state prisons and juvenile facilities and are prevented by law from striking.

Frankfort, IL... State Representative Margo McDermed (R-Mokena) is pleased to announce her first annual art contest for the 37th district. 
Image result for art“This is a great way to showcase the student talent from across the 37th district and winners will have their art displayed in my Capitol office,” said McDermed. “I anticipate many beautiful entries and am looking forward to making this an annual competition.”

Students who are in 6th grade through high school seniors will compete by drawing or painting a picture that resembles their community.  This can feature their school, church, home or a nature scene.  Entries will be judged on beauty, uniqueness and fulfilled intent. A drawing or painting from one middle schooler and one high schooler from throughout the district will be selected. 

Entries will be accepted by local schools as well as at Rep. McDermed’s office at 11032 W Lincoln Hwy in Frankfort. The deadline for the district wide student art contest is April 26th.

Springfield, IL... State Representative Margo McDermed (R-Mokena) has issued the following statement:

"Today the Governor made an important point about the lagging growth and population exodus the state has been experiencing for a decade. As a result of lost tax revenue and consumers, the state's long standing budget woes have worsened. Illinois has made it a habit of hampering job creation while at the same time overburdening taxpayers. The longer Illinois goes without a responsible budget in place, the harder it will be to climb out of our current downward spiral. I stand with the Governor in calling for a budget that works for both taxpayers and job creators for years to come. We need to show the people of this state that they can trust us to get the job done and legislate real results that will move the state toward the right path."
Happy Valentines Day!

Quiet Week in Springfield
         The focus last week in Springfield was primarily on writing and drafting bills. As of Friday, the deadline to file legislation, 3,826 House bills have been filed by members of both parties. We're back in session tomorrow when the Senate joins us in the House to hear the Governor's annual budget address. You can listen to it live here at noon. 
Springfield, IL… State Representative Margo McDermed (R-Mokena) has filed legislation to make the Research and Development tax credit permanent. The R&D tax credit expired in 2016 and has expired previously in 2004, 2009, and 2010.

“The unpredictability of the Research and Development Tax credit has negatively impacted its perception by businesses looking to expand in, or come to, Illinois” Rep. McDermed said. “The importance of this credit is evidenced by its renewal time and time again, but this is not an issue that can keep expiring and falling through the cracks. If utilized properly and made permanent it can be a real boon for the state’s economy.”

Business groups routinely acknowledge that the uncertainty of the tax credit limits its effectiveness. R&D decisions are often made with long term goals in mind. Business confidence in the political whims of the state to renew the credit undermine its strength in promoting the state as a place to do business.

“In an unstable political environment, businesses need all the stability and certainty they can get when making decisions about their future in Illinois,” McDermed said. “A permanent R&D credit would increase business confidence in the incentive and lead to greater investment in Illinois.”

House Bill 450 has been assigned to the Revenue and Finance committee. 
Rep. McDermed with fellow Rep. Parkhurst(center), Manteno Veteran's Home administrator Lestor Robertsen (Right), and staff
State Representative Margo McDermed (R-Mokena) today announced her committee assignments for the 100th General Assembly, including her new roles as the minority spokesperson on the Committee on Transportation: Roads and Bridges and the Committee on Economic Justice. Rep. McDermed was also appointed to the Committees on the Environment, Health Care Licenses, Elections and Campaign Finance, and the Special Committee on Mental Health.

“In my second General Assembly in office I am pleased to be able to step up and take on these new roles,” said Rep. McDermed. “I am excited to bring my past experience in the private sector and General Assembly to these important committees. In addition, these varied committees will allow me to help shape many aspects of state policy and law for the betterment of Illinois and the 37th district.”