Joyce 100 ClubSPRINGFIELD – A Representative Fran Hurley (D-Chicago) and Senator Patrick Joyce (D-Essex) measure to support first responders via a tax check-off passed the Illinois House on Wednesday.

“First responders put their lives on the line for our community and we should have an easier option to give back,” Joyce said.

House Bill 4161 aims to increase donations to the 100 Club of Illinois by making a convenient donation option on individual state income tax returns. The 100 Club of Illinois is a nonprofit that provides resources, financial support, training and moral support to both the families of first responders killed in the line of duty and active duty first responders. All sworn federal, state, county and local first responders stationed in Illinois are included.

“I will continue to fight for legislation that benefits first responders and their families,” Hurley said.

Current law provides similar donation options on state individual tax returns for the following funds: Wildlife Preservation Fund; Alzheimer's Disease Research, Care, and Support Fund; Assistance to the Homeless Fund; Diabetes Research Fund; Hunger Relief Fund; and Ronald McDonald House Charities Fund.

“The 100 Club of Illinois has been serving the first responder community for more than 55 years. We are grateful for the opportunity to further promote the mission of the Club,” said 100 Club of Illinois CEO Caitlyn Brennan. “Funds brought in through this program will assist the Club in providing support to the families of our fallen heroes and the larger first responder community of Illinois.”

House Bill 4161 passed the House and awaits further consideration in the Senate.  

Category: Press Releases

Joyce Classroom SuppliesSPRINGFIELD – State Senator Patrick Joyce (D-Essex) supported legislation that will increase the tax credit to teachers and other school staff who purchase classroom materials at public or private Illinois schools to $300.

“Educators deserve a break on the costs of classroom supplies” said Joyce. “This legislation will address the long-held practice of educators purchasing classroom supplies out of their own pocket.”

Senate Bill 1143 allows for a tax credit in the amount paid by the educator or other school staff like teacher aids or school counselors for classroom materials up to $300 beginning in taxable year 2023. In current law, the maximum credit allowed is $250.

“Educators always want what is best for the kids, allowing for an additional write off just makes sense,” Joyce said. “Educators invest in our children’s future, so we should invest in educators.”

At the highest reported amount in record, teachers spent an average of $750 on school supplies out of pocket during the 2020-2021 school year. Approximately 30% of teachers spent $1,000 or more on school supplies. Purchases often include professional development books, office supplies, tissues, art supplies, snacks for students who might not have enough food at home and clothing.

SB 1143 was approved by the Senate Thursday and will now head to the House for further consideration.

Category: Press Releases

Joyce Grain BinGrain Bin Safety Week is February 20-26

KANKAKEE – To prevent fatalities on the farm during the busy harvest season, Senate Agriculture Committee chair Patrick Joyce (D-Essex) is joining officials in reminding farmers and farm workers to be cautious when working in and around grain bins.

“There is a responsibility that comes with living in a rural area, we have to continue to take care of friends and neighbors” Joyce said. “With delayed emergency response times, it is crucial to review all safety precautions.”

While essential to Illinois’ harvests, grain handling equipment and storage containers can quickly become dangerous. In 2020, Illinois Fire Departments responded to a nation leading 12 rescue incidents at Illinois grain bins and elevators.

“Often times we become complacent when doing tasks we have done a thousand times and for farmers that often means working in and around grain bins,” said IDOA Director, Jerry Costello II.  “Unfortunately, problems involving flowing grain can snowball quickly. That’s why it’s important to set aside time to go over safety measures, to prepare farmers for a potential grain bin emergency.”

To learn safety tips and find additional information to stay safe during harvest, click here

Category: Press Releases

Joyce Red TapeSPRINGFIELD – Legislation to expedite the issuance of professional licenses, championed by State Senator Patrick Joyce (D-Essex), passed the Illinois Senate on Wednesday.

“This measure cuts red tape for new professionals entering the workforce,” Joyce said. “Advocating for hard-working Illinoisans is my top priority and this legislation does just that.”

The legislation was introduced after hearing word from local residents that the professional licensing process was taking too long. Under the legislation, IDFPR will be required to process applications within four weeks as long as there were no deficiencies submitted. The measure would expedite licenses for health care workers, accountants, speech pathologists and other professionals.

“New professionals are waiting months to receive a license that they are qualified for and need to enter the workforce,” Joyce said. “While I appreciate the department’s efforts to reduce processing times with electronic renewals, I believe this legislation will help speed up the process.”

Senate Bill 670 moves to the House for further consideration.

Category: Press Releases

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