With the New Year upon us, State Representative Charlie Meier (R-Okawville) wants to make the public aware of several new laws scheduled to take effect January 1, 2018.  214 new laws will take effect this New Year.
Of the 200 plus new laws scheduled to take effect, Rep. Meier highlighted several new laws which may be of interest to the region. New laws include but are not limited to; enhancing and protecting Illinois’ military bases, changing the organ donor registration to age 16, banning part-time elected officials from receiving a pension, requiring MRIs to be included with Mammograms, a police training program in Madison and St. Clair Counties, helping our military veterans, and increasing the loan amount for the purchase of fire trucks.
Enhancing and protecting Illinois’ military bases

To help prevent future closings of military bases and other military infrastructure located within Illinois. Public Act 100-144 creates the Military Economic Development Committee (currently, the Interagency Military Base Support and Economic Development Committee) as an entity within the Office of the Lieutenant Governor (currently, the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.) It also makes changes to the composition and rules of the Committee including increasing the membership from 8 to 10, and ensuring up to four members have a military background in Illinois.

“The more stakeholders we have advocating on behalf of Illinois’ military bases is certainly helpful,” said Rep. Meier. “According to data provided to my office, the military and the defense industry directly and indirectly contribute nearly 150,000 jobs and $13.3 billion in economic activity across Illinois. Scott Air Force Base is a major contributor to our state and local economy, most importantly SAFB plays a major role in our national security. This new law will help enhance and protect our military bases.”

Organ donor registration to age 16
Public Act 100-41 requires the Secretary of State to begin to offer each applicant for a driver's license or identification card who is 16 years of age or older (rather than 18 years of age or older) the opportunity to have his or her name included in the First Person Consent organ and tissue donor registry. Allows the parent or guardian of the donor to amend or revoke the anatomical gift of the donor's body.

Ban on part-time elected or appointed officials from IMRF

The new law (Public Act 100-274) prohibits part-time officeholders (elected or appointed) from participating in or receiving benefits from the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund (IMRF). The officeholder’s position is deemed to be part-time if it normally requires the performance of duty during less than 1,000 hours a year for the governing body of the participating unit of local government.

Mammogram coverage to include MRIs

Public Act 100-395 amends sections concerning coverage for mammograms, the Illinois Insurance Code, the Health Maintenance Organization Act and the Illinois Public Aid Code to require that MRIs of an entire breast or breasts shall be covered if a mammogram demonstrates heterogeneous or dense breast tissue, when medically necessary as determined by a physician licensed to practice medicine in all its branches.
The State of Illinois on December 20th officially reduced multiple fees placed on small businesses. The new law supported by State Representative Charlie Meier (R-Okawville) and recently signed by Governor Bruce Rauner will reduce startup, annual filing and other fees for limited liability companies (LLCs), the organizational structure preferred by many of Illinois’ 1.2 million small businesses.

“This new law should help create more jobs in our state as small businesses employ the majority of employees in Illinois,” said Rep. Meier. “Anytime we can help reduce the cost of doing business in our state, it’s good for jobs and customers. Before December 20th, Illinois’ cost for entrepreneurs to open their business was among the highest in the country. I think this new law will certainly help put our state another step towards prosperity.”

Public Act 100-0571 will encourage more businesses to form in Illinois rather than go to other states to escape high fees. The filing fee for new LLCs drops to $150 from $500 and annual report fees drop to $75 from $250. Previously, Illinois charged fees that were among the highest in the nation.