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State Representative Charlie Meier (R-Okawville) co-sponsored the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act,” to prohibit units of government in Illinois from using taxpayer funds for elective abortions, reversing key provisions of the recently enacted House Bill 40.

“I’m opposed to taxpayer funding of abortions and I support the right to life,” said Rep, Meier. “It is estimated that Illinois taxpayers could end up paying 75% of the state’s 40,000 annual elective abortions. The state can’t even pay its current bills, we should not spend $30 million in tax dollars on 30,000 abortions annually.”

The No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act is modeled after the federal Hyde Amendment, which prevents federal funding for abortions, other than for abortions sought in connection with pregnancies that result from rape or incest, or that threaten the life of the mother. Abortions under these circumstances constitute roughly 1% of all abortions. Federal law already requires states to provide Medicaid abortions under these three conditions, and the proposed Act recognizes those federal provisions. Furthermore, while the federal government typically matches a state’s Medicaid expenses, it will not do so for elective abortions.
State Representative Charlie Meier (R-Okawville) recently chief co-sponsored legislation (HR 627) opposing the use of an estimated $100 million in state tax dollars to fund the Obama Presidential Library in Illinois.

“Our hard earned tax dollars in southern Illinois should not be used to fund the Obama Presidential Library in Chicago,” said Rep. Meier. “Obama should be able to raise enough private funds without having to rely on state tax dollars to fund a library touting his eight years in office. I can’t and will not support a bill in the General Assembly that funds the Obama library.”

The last two Presidents of the United States have used private donations to build their libraries. No presidential libraries overseen by the National Archives and Records Administration have received direct funding from either the federal government or their respective states.

President Barack Obama concluded his second and final term as President of the United States of America on January 20, 2017, and has announced plans to build a presidential library and museum in Chicago. A recent legislative initiative proposes to allocate $100 million from Illinois capital spending funds for the construction of President Obama's Presidential Library and Museum. This proposal comes at a time when the State's budget condition continues to worsen and economic growth continues to lag behind national recovery trends.

State Representative Charlie Meier (R-Okawville) would like to see Amazon call Illinois home by choosing the Metro East as their second headquarters in North America (HQ2).

Earlier this month, Amazon announced plans to open its second headquarters by a Request for Proposal (RFP) from state and local government leaders. The RFP from government leaders is due by October 19, 2017.

On Thursday, Rep. Charlie Meier sent a letter and e-mail to both Madison and St. Clair County Board Chairman Kurt Prenzler and Mark Kern offering his support to both counties if they need assistance from the State of Illinois to help attract Amazon’s second corporate headquarters.

“I think the Metro East can meet the needs of Amazon and I think it’s safe to say we can agree on this,” said Rep. Meier. “Our region desperately needs more jobs and opportunity. If we are successful in bringing Amazon’s second corporate headquarters to the Metro East, it would certainly prove positive for our region.”

According to Amazon’s announcement on September 7, 2017, “Amazon expects to invest over $5 billion in construction and grow this second headquarters to include as many as 50,000 high-paying jobs. In addition to Amazon’s direct hiring and investment, construction and ongoing operation of Amazon HQ2 is expected to create tens of thousands of additional jobs and tens of billions of dollars in additional investment in the surrounding community.”

The official letter Representative Charlie Meier sent to Chairman Prenzler and Chairman Kern can be found here.
I am writing to inform you that my office is available to assist with anything your county may need from the State of Illinois to help the Metro East attract Amazon’s second corporate headquarters.

If we are successful in bringing Amazon to the Metro East, we have an opportunity to gain up to 50,000 new full-time jobs with average salaries exceeding $100,000 over the next ten to fifteen years. Plus, the Amazon project is expected to have over $5 billion in capital expenditures invested in our region.

Amazon’s ideal site and building requirements are as follows:

30 miles from a population center
Within 45 minutes of an International airport
1-2 miles from major highways and roads
Access to on-site mass transit (i.e. direct access to rail, train, subway/metro bus routes)
500,000 square feet of building space for Phase 1 in 2019 and up to 8,000,000 square feet beyond 2027
Amazon recently announced plans to open a second headquarters in North America. Their Request for Proposal "RFP" can be found here.

According to Amazon, "Amazon HQ2, a second company headquarters in North America. Amazon expects to invest over $5 billion in construction and grow this second headquarters to include as many as 50,000 high-paying jobs. In addition to Amazon’s direct hiring and investment, construction and ongoing operation of Amazon HQ2 is expected to create tens of thousands of additional jobs and tens of billions of dollars in additional investment in the surrounding community. Amazon is opening the Amazon HQ2 Request for Proposal (“RFP”) now, and local and state government leaders interested in learning more about how they can bring Amazon to their community can visit www.amazon.com/amazonHQ2."
Equifax, an Atlanta based credit-rating agency, suffered a security breach on July 29th that exposed sensitive information of millions of Americans.   Such information included social security numbers, driver’s license numbers, credit card numbers, birthdays, and addresses. It has been determined that 5.4 million Illinois residents have been affected by the breach.

The company has set up a website where you can check if your personal information was affected by the breach: www.equifaxsecurity2017.com.

Attorney General Lisa Madigan has opened an investigation into the recent security breach, and called on Equifax to provide free credit freezes to all Illinois residents in the wake of the breach. She urges Illinois residents to take the Equifax breach seriously and take steps to protect themselves from the possibility of identity theft:

· Seriously consider placing a credit freeze on your credit reports with all 3 consumer reporting agencies: TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax;
· Regularly request your free credit reports, inspect them closely, and promptly dispute any unauthorized accounts;
· Inspect all financial account statements closely and promptly dispute any unauthorized charges;
· Consider placing alerts on your financial accounts so your financial institution alerts you when money above a pre-designated amount is withdrawn;
· Beware of potential phishing emails; don't open any email messages or attachments from unknown senders and do not click on any unknown links. Fraudsters will frequently send coercive and misleading emails threatening account suspension or worse if sensitive information is not provided. Remember, businesses will never ask customers to verify account information via email. If in doubt, contact the business in question directly for verification and to report phishing emails; and
· Be on the lookout for spoofed email addresses. Spoofed email addresses are those that make minor changes in the domain name, frequently changing the letter O to the number zero, or the lowercase letter l to the number one. Scrutinize all incoming email addresses to ensure that the sender is truly legitimate.

With questions on the data breach, you can contact Equifax at 866-447-7559, or the Illinois Attorney General’s Identity Theft Hotline at 1 (866) 999-5630.