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April 2008 Newsletter

Property Tax Appeals Seminar for Wheeling Township

On April 12th, from 10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., Senator Susan Garret and I will host a tax appeals seminar for those who reside in Wheeling Township.    The seminar will start with a 40-minute presentation by representatives from the office of Commissioner Brendan Houlihan, Cook County Board of Review. This will be followed by a question-and-answer session, and then the Board of Review staff will be available to work one-on-one with residents who have questions about their own assessments.

Attendees are encouraged to bring their tax bills with them so that staff members can help them fill out complaint forms. The seminar will be held at the Prospect Heights Public Library at 12 N. Elm St. in the “Borland Meeting Room.”  Please feel free to call my office with any questions.

Budget Hearing Wrap-Up

As some of you may already know, the House Democrats have been holding budget hearings throughout theChicagoland area over the past few weeks.  On March 24th, over two hundred people representing various organizations came to Northbrook Village Hall to testify in hopes of providing legislators information so we can construct a well-balanced and fair budget.  Rep. Julie Hamos, Rep. Karen May, and I received much fruitful and sometimes shocking information from different constituents.  One in particular that caught my attention was the fact that Illinois is 51st in the nation overall in funding community based services for developmental disabilities. Representatives from Glenkirk and Anixter Center, as well as parents of children with developmental disabilities provided this information to our panel.  This statistic is unacceptable, and I plan to continue working with my colleagues in Springfield to change.

My 100% Environmental Voting Record

Since taking office in 2003, the environment and environmental policies have been a priority of mine.  I am proud to say that I was recently honored by the Illinois Environmental Council for my 100% voting record on environmental issues in 2007.  In 2007, the Illinois General Assembly had one of its most productive sessions for environmental issues ever, passing legislation that impacted all four of the IEC’s stated priorities for 2007 – clean and affordable energy, open space acquisition and conservation, protection against toxic pollution and the Great Lakes.  I am one of 16 state senators and representatives who voted consistently in favor of the environment in 2007.

Throughout the legislative session each year, the IEC staff monitors the voting records of all members of the Illinois General Assembly and issues its Environmental Scorecard, which evaluates votes on environment-related bills as to whether it was for or against the environment.  I am honored to receive this award and will continue to work on protecting the environment and health in every way I can.


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