Now that we have wrapped up the Spring 2021 legislative season, there is a lot to report! Last Friday, I was honored to join Governor Pritzker, Speaker Welch, and some of my colleagues at the bill signing for the TEAACH Act, a piece of legislation that will make Illinois the first state in the nation to ensure Asian American history is not ignored in K-12 history curricula in Illinois
We also passed a fiscally and socially responsible budget that saves taxpayer dollars by paying off debt early and addressing Illinois’ bill backlog while closing corporate tax loopholes that used to cost our state millions–without any new taxes for Illinois families. Illinois’ unpaid bills are down to $2.9B, from a high of $16.7B during the Rauner administration.
I am proud to report, as a result of our work in Springfield, Illinois’ credit rating has been upgraded by Moody’s, and just recently S&P–for the first time in 25 years. Fitch’s also upgraded Illinois credit outlook. This shows that we are on the right track and have made significant progress in moving the state in a more secure financial position. We still have a great deal of work to do, but these developments are a major victory for Illinois and it represents a major step forward.
Representative Jennifer Gong-Gershowitz
End-of-Session Town Hall!
Join State Senator Laura Fine, State Representative Robyn Gabel and I for an End-of-Session town hall next Monday, July 19th at 7:00PM at the Evanston Ecology Center (2024 N McCormick Blvd, Evanston, IL 60201).
The event will be held in person as well as streamed on Facebook Live through Senator Fine’s official Facebook page. Please RSVP to this event by emailing your name to firstname.lastname@example.org as capacity will be limited. To submit questions for the event, please email email@example.com. If you are planning to participate virtually, all questions must be submitted by Monday, July 19th at Noon. Masks and social distancing will be required for all attendees.
The Illinois Department of Public Health will be holding weekly lottery drawings from July 8th to August 26th from a prize pool of $10m to any resident of Illinois who has been vaccinated in Illinois. More information on the lottery and details of prizes can be found at IDPH’s website HERE.
Flick Park testing continues, The COVID-19 testing center run by Northshore Clinical Labs in partnership with the Glenview Park District at Flick Park is scheduled to remain open until July 31st. Registration is required, you can make an appointment HERE.
Importance of getting vaccinated with increased cases from the Delta Variant of COVID-19, I encourage anyone who has not done so to get vaccinated as soon as they are able! Vaccines are easy to obtain now with supply readily available meaning anyone who wants a vaccine can get one.
IDES Phishing Notices
The Illinois Department of Employment Security continues to warn residents of phishing scams pertaining to unemployment benefits. IDES claimants should maintain strong, unique passwords to their accounts, and never share personal account information with untrustworthy sources. An example of phishing attempts are below, if you are ever unsure of anything, please contact our office at 847-486-8810 and we can verify with IDES.
SoS extends Driver’s License/ID expiration dates
All driver’s licenses and State IDs will now expire on January 1st, 2022. So please renew online if you are able, and do not rush to driver’s services facilities in this Summer’s heat!
Child Tax Credit for Families
The IRS has launched two new online tools designed to help families manage and monitor the advance monthly payments of Child Tax Credits under the American Rescue Plan.
These two new tools are in addition to the Non-filer Sign-up Tool – announced last week – which helps families not normally required to file an income tax return to quickly register for the Child Tax Credit. The two new tools are:
The Child Tax Credit Eligibility Assistant which helps families determine whether they qualify for Child Tax Credit payments, and
The Update Portal which helps families monitor and manage Child Tax Credit payments
The Child Tax Credit Update Portal is available here. Frequently asked questions about the 2021 Child Tax Credit and Advance Child Tax Credit Payments are available here. Resources and guidance about the 2021 Child Tax Credit and Advance Child Tax Credit Payments are available here.
Niles Township Rental Assistance
Niles Township Government is now offering rental assistance for residents suffering from hardships caused by COVID-19, thanks to a partnership with Niles Township High School District 219!
The new funding is open to families with children who attend District 219. But even if your child does not go to District 219, the Township may be able to help, so please call!
Please visit https://nilestownshipgov.com/ or call 847-673-9300 for more information!
Illinois Rental Payment Program
The Illinois Housing Development Authority is still taking applications from tenants who are looking for assistance in paying past due rent up to 15 months previously. You can read eligibility requirements on IHDA’s website HERE, and you can apply through 11:59 PM on Sunday July 18th HERE.
Rebuild Illinois Projects Here at Home
It’s construction season! With the latest round of state grants, our community has received an additional $1.72M worth of capital funding to rebuild infrastructure in our community, including road improvements on Church Street between Gross Point Road in Skokie and Dodge Street in Evanston. These and other local construction projects are part of Illinois’s landmark capital program that we passed in 2019 to improve our aging transportation system.
Meet my Staff
My office had another Summer intern begin this month. Sahib Kaur grew up in Northbrook and is a Junior at Glenbrook North High School. Her area of interest is criminal justice and wants to ensure that the legal system works fairly for all. Do not hesitate to reach out to my office and say hi to Sahib as she works with us!
Events in the District
- Glenview Summer Art Fair will take place on July 24th and 25th at Lyons Elementary School 11 AM to 5 PM each day. The event is outdoors and free to the public! More information can be found HERE.
- Art At The Glen takes place on July 31st and August 1st at the Glen, the event is free of charge. You can read more about HERE.
- The Glenview Public Library is hosting the Downtown Dash: Glenview Scavenger Hunt on Saturday July 17th. Participate in a scavenger hunt through downtown Glenview, registration is required you can sign up HERE.
- Governor Pritzker came to Niles West High School to sign the Teaching Equitable Asian American History Act into law. Making Illinois the first state to include Asian American history as a required curriculum in all public schools. It was an honor to stand alongside my family, community advocates and my colleagues to celebrate this historic occasion.
- I attended the opening ceremony for the Village of Skokie’s first annual Juneteenth celebration alongside Lt. Governor Juliana Stratton and my colleagues from the General Assembly. Thank you to Skokie United, Skokie Public Library and the Village of Skokie for organizing this great event.
- I was proud to stand alongside the LGBTQ+ community at the Glenview Public Library to raise the Pride flag in recognition of Pride month.