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interoior-header-Illinois

Legislative report

NAIFA Illinois Legislative Update 

By: Evan Manning, Lobbyist - May 3, 2024

Action Alert SB2568

IL Enhances Protections  for Annuity Consumers

Evan Manning

 

103rd ILLINOIS GENERAL ASSEMBLY:

 The Senate was in session Tuesday through Thursday, but canceled session originally scheduled for Friday and next Monday. The House, meanwhile, met Tuesday through Friday. That chamber resumes session on Monday (May 6) and will be in all week. The Senate resumes session on Tuesday (May 7) and is scheduled to be in for the duration of the week.

While today is the deadline to pass substantive legislation out of committees in the second chamber, several deadline extensions have been granted; numerous bills were simply not positioned for committee consideration. The Senate extended the deadline for all substantive House Bills until May 10.

The Illinois General Assembly fast tracked passage of an election omnibus on SB 2412 (Harmon/Hoffman). As amended, the legislation eliminates the slating process – which allows political party committees to appoint challengers to fill out legislative ballots if the party does not field a candidate in the primary. This provision applies only to state House and Senate races. In addition, at the request of the Illinois Clerks and Recorders Association, the bill moves up the start of petition circulation by 28 days (from September to August). Finally, the bill places on the November ballot three non-binding referendums. These center on asking for voter opinion on mandatory insurance coverage for in-vitro fertilization; election interference; and whether the state should adopt a millionaire’s tax with proceeds going towards property tax relief. The measure passed the House 67-4-40, and the Senate by a vote of 35-3-18 and was quickly signed by the Governor. Read more here.

SB 2568 - Provides that a school board that decides to offer to the school district's teachers a retirement savings plan under Section 401(k) or 457 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 may enter into a contract with only one vendor to administer the plan. The 5th amendment has not yet been assigned to Senate Labor Committee, of course that can happen at any moment. Senate Labor is meeting on Wednesday, May 8th. From recent discussions the sponsor is still wanting to push through her bill and unwilling to take any considerations from industry. We will have a Call-to-Action if the bill gets posted or moves to Third Reading to have members contact their legislators to oppose the bill. We are working with our coalition partners to time the Call-to-Action together so that messaging comes from multiple sources all at once. Stay tuned!

By a vote of 10-5, the House Insurance Committee approved SB 773 (Castro/Croke) which would require all insurers offering pregnancy-related benefits to cover infertility treatments, including IVF. Currently, only employer plans with more than 25 employees must cover the diagnosis and treatment of infertility. The bill would also prohibit insurers from capping the number of IVF rounds (current law allows insurers to cap coverage at four rounds). The bill would also require employer plans with more than 25 employees to cover an annual menopause visit for women over 45. The full House now considers the measure.

Changes to the liability guidelines in the Biometric Information Privacy Act are addressed in SB 2979 (Cunningham). Specifically, liability faced by the business would accrue on a per-employee basis, rather than a per-collection basis. The legislation also allows the use of electronic signatures as a means of granting written consent. Having passed the House Judiciary Civil Committee by a vote of 10-5, the bill goes before the full House.

Requiring insurance companies in Illinois to cover genetic testing for those patients with a family history of cancer is the essence of SB 2697 (Morrison), approved by the House Insurance Committee unanimously. The full House will now consider the measure, which would cap out-of-pocket costs at $50; Medicaid patients would be covered with no out-of-pocket costs.

SB 2764 (Turner) addresses automatic renewal on free trial or promotional services. Having passed out of the House Consumer Protection Committee on a 6-2 vote, the full House will now act on the bill.

Consumer reporting agencies would be prohibited from making a credit report containing any adverse information about consumers related to medical debt under SB 2933 (Stadelman). The House Consumer Protection Committee unanimously passed the measure which will now go before the full House.

2024 Key Dates and Session Deadlines:

May 3: Committee Deadline for Bills in the Opposite Chamber

May 17: House and Senate Third Reading Deadline for Bills in the Opposite Chamber

May 24: Adjournment

May 25 – 31: Contingent Session Days

GOVERNOR’S HIGHLIGHTS:

Supportive Housing Funding Awarded: The Illinois Housing Development Authority awarded over $123 million in state and federal resources to finance permanent supportive housing for individuals at risk of homelessness, those living with disabilities, and other vulnerable populations. Funds are to construct or rehabilitate 14 developments (containing 392 units) of affordable housing; ultimately they will be integrated with flexible supportive services to help residents maintain their housing stability, health, and independence.

IDPH and IDOA Monitoring H5N1 Virus in Dairy Cattle: A partnership to coordinate prevention and response measures for H5N1 influenza virus (the Bird Flu) in dairy herds has been announced by the Illinois Department of Agriculture and the Illinois Department of Public Health. The virus has been identified in dairy herds in eight states, but no cases have been reported in Illinois. The two Illinois agencies will work with producer groups and partner organizations to educate veterinarians and cattle farmers on the clinical signs of H5N1 influenza so as to quickly identify and contain potential infections.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Department of Agriculture implemented mandatory testing for interstate movement of dairy cattle as well as mandatory reporting of positive results to limit the spread of the disease.

Illinois Department of Corrections Facility Closures: The Pritzker Administration’s plans to close and rebuild Logan and Stateville Correction Facilities have been filed with the Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability as required by state law. The plans indicate a complete closure of Logan in downstate Lincoln, with the inmates being moved to a new facility on the Stateville campus (in suburban Crest Hill). The plans are here. Read more here.

IDPH Reports First Bird Case of West Nile Virus: Following a warm and mild winter, the Illinois Department of Public Health has detected the first case of West Nile Virus, discovered in a bird collected on April 2 in Douglas County. Cases are usually first reported during the summer months. Additional information and data can be found at IDPH’s West Nile virus website and the West Nile virus Dashboard.

Rivian Receives State Incentive Package: An $827M incentive package has been awarded to Rivian for expansion of its Bloomington plant, improvements in public infrastructure, and job training programs for Rivian’s workforce, to produce R2 (the midsized SUV). The funding comes from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity. Under the arrangement, Rivian will add at least 550 jobs over the next five years and invest $1.5 billion in its manufacturing operations.  Read more here.

OTHER NEWS:

Benefits for Health Coverage for Immigrants: On Friday, advocates for immigrant rights unveiled a new report they contend shows that providing health coverage to the state’s immigrant population yields benefits not only to those individuals, but also to their families, communities and society at large. The University of Illinois Chicago’s Great Cities Institute produced the report; read more here.

Chicago Bears Stadium: As lawmakers look to wrap up the spring session and finalize the state budget, the true cost of a new stadium for the Chicago Bears is beginning to be realized. Under the Bears’ proposal, the state would incur $900 million in borrowing and the Illinois Sports Facilities Authority would refinance roughly $430 million in existing debt for previous projects and borrow about $160 million more to create a liquidity fund (to protect Chicago from future revenue shortfalls from a 2% city hotel tax being tapped to cover borrowing costs). But that proposal fails to consider long-term costs to the taxpayer, says the Illinois Sports Facility Authority. An ISFA analysis found that, when counting interest and other long-term costs, the likely price tag to taxpayers would be close to $4.8 billion over four decades. Read more here.  

After a meeting this week between the Bears organization and the Governor’s staff, the Governor called the current plan a “non-starter” but said he remains “open to conversations”.

Community Reinvestment Act: Nearly three years after the passage of the Community Reinvestment Act – one of the four pillars of the Black Caucus legislative package – rules have been approved to implement it. The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation proposed the rules; the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules approved them. Under the law, financial institutions – primarily state-chartered banks and savings banks, credit unions and non-bank mortgage lenders – must meet the financial services needs of the communities in which they are located. In addition, IDFPR must conduct examinations to measure each institution’s compliance with the law. Finally, financial institutions must report to IDFPR on such items as the number and amount of mortgage loans and small business loans; the extent of marketing activities to create community awareness of services; and participation in community development and redevelopment programs. Read more here.

Cannabis Reclassification: The federal government is taking steps to reclassify cannabis from a Schedule 1 drug to a Scheule 3 drug, which would allow greater research into the effects of cannabis. In Illinois, where both medical and recreational cannabis are legal, this change would permit cannabis businesses greater ability to take tax deductions for business expenses and make it easier to get loans. Read more here and here.

COGFA April Briefing: No “April surprise” for state revenue occurred this year, according to the latest report from the Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability. General Funds receipts totaled $6.566 billion (a $373 million or 6.0% increase over last April) which is in line with the Agency’s previous forecast. Read the full briefing here.