FloodingPARK FOREST – Families and businesses impacted by the severe storms and flash flooding in central Illinois that occurred earlier this month could be eligible for recovery assistance from the U.S. Small Business Administration, State Senator Patrick Joyce (D-Essex) announced Wednesday.

Families in the surrounding counties of Champaign, Iroquois, Ford, Livingston, McLean and Vermilion are also eligible to apply for the SBA’s low-interest, long-term loans to boost flood recovery efforts.

“Following a disaster, it’s important for the community to come together and help each other heal,” Joyce said. “Assistance from the U.S. Small Business Administration can give families the boost they need to bounce back.”

The SBA Disaster Declaration makes three types of loans available to storm survivors:

  • Physical Disaster Loans: Loans to businesses to repair or replace disaster-damaged property owned by the business, including real estate, inventory, supplies, machinery and equipment. These applications must be received by the SBA no later than Oct. 22, 2021.
  • Economic Injury Disaster Loans: Working capital loans to help small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives and most private nonprofits meet their ordinary and necessary financial obligations that cannot be met as a result of the disaster. These applications must be submitted to the SBA no later than May 23, 2022.
  • Home Disaster Loans: Loans to homeowners or renters to repair or replace disaster-damaged real estate and personal property. SBA regulations limit home loans to $200,000 for the repair or replacement of real estate and $40,000 to repair or replace personal property. These loan applications are due Oct. 22, 2021.

Read more: Joyce: Kankakee County residents can apply for disaster assistance to bounce back after severe...

Category: Press Releases

joyce teacher 041321PARK FOREST – A comprehensive proposal by State Senator Patrick Joyce (D-Essex) aimed at eliminating Illinois’ teacher shortage was signed into law by Gov. JB Pritzker.

“The teacher shortage in Illinois is a crisis, and this new law offers strategies to reverse the trend,” Joyce said. “As school districts return to in-person learning this fall, this new law will grant retired teachers the ability to substitute teach for more hours without impairing their retirement status.”

Currently, Illinois law allows retired teachers to substitute teach for up to 120 days or 600 hours without jeopardizing their retirement status. Because retired teachers often return to work as substitute teachers, Joyce’s initiative would create a yearly, rather than lifetime limit: Retired teachers could substitute teach for 100 days or 500 hours each school year beginning July 1, 2023.

“This new law will allow school districts to increase the pool of qualified substitute teachers while allowing former teachers to maintain their retirement status, ensuring the most qualified professionals are teaching our children,” Joyce said. 

The legislation – Senate Bill 1989 – was signed into law Friday and takes effect immediately.

Category: Press Releases

Senator JoycePARK FOREST – Registration fees for small trailers will be $36, a significant decrease from the current $118, thanks to a new law backed by State Senator Patrick Joyce (D-Essex).

“After speaking with many constituents who were having trouble renewing licenses for their small trailers, I became a lead co-sponsor of this new law to create a more reasonable registration system,” Joyce said.

The new law classifies all trailers weighing 2,000 pounds or less as “utility trailers” and sets the utility trailer registration fee at $36. Fees were increased on these trailers in 2019 as a part of the Rebuild Illinois capital infrastructure plan.

The measure applies only to trailers primarily designated for personal use.

The legislation also removes the $10,000 cap on sales tax credits on vehicle trade-ins. The cap, which has been in effect since 2020, required sales tax to be applied to any trade-in with a value above $10,000, costing residents hundreds of dollars more when purchasing a new vehicle.

“By reversing the fee hike on one class of trailer license plates, we can give Illinois residents the chance to keep more of their hard-earned money in their pockets,” Joyce said. “Drivers can finally breathe a sigh of relief under this new law.”

The legislation – Senate Bill 58 – was signed into law Friday and takes effect immediately.

Category: Press Releases


MORRIS – State Senator Patrick Joyce (D-Essex) remains a strong advocate for creating a responsible energy package that will protect jobs and secure Illinois’ clean energy future.

“Closing our nuclear plants is something our communities cannot afford or survive—the cost of doing nothing at this crucial time is simply too great,” Joyce said. “With so much at stake, it’s vital that we act now to protect workers who will lose their livelihoods if we don’t take action soon.”

In 2020, Exelon announced it planned to close two Illinois nuclear power plants because of a drop in revenue and energy costs. Immediately after the announcement, state lawmakers began work on an energy bill they hope will keep the plant open, but discussions are still ongoing.

Read more: Joyce calls for action to pass a responsible energy package

Category: Press Releases

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