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Springfield….Representative David Reis (R-Ste. Marie) was recently joined in Springfield by White County resident Valinda Rowe to provide testimony before the House Judiciary Criminal Law Committee.  Reis and Rowe discussed SB 1524, a bill to ease concealed carry restrictions on active duty military members.

“The way the law reads now, nonresident active military personnel who are stationed in Illinois cannot apply for a concealed carry permit,” Reis said. “These are the same individuals who are defending our country yet they cannot defend themselves with a concealed carry option.”
Illinois does not offer reciprocity or recognition of concealed carry licenses with any other state.

In order to carry a concealed firearm in Illinois, a non-law enforcement individual must hold an Illinois Concealed Carry License.

Reis says SB 1524 would simply allow these military personnel the right to apply for a concealed carry permit just like Illinois residents.

“We trust our soldiers to carry weapons in defense of our country. These folks should not be denied the right to an Illinois permit because of an unintended consequence of our four year old law,” Reis said.

Reis says the purpose of the subject matter hearing was to educate the members of the Committee on the need for a change in Illinois law. The bill remains in Committee awaiting a vote as end of session discussions continue.

The legislation can be found at
Rep. Reis and Mike and Valinda Rowe of Carmi following testimony before the House Judiciary Criminal Law Committee

Springfield….Representative David Reis (R-Ste. Marie) cast a resounding no vote on Tuesday when on a bill that would radically expand access to elective, taxpayer-funded abortions. HB 40 on Tuesday. Reis spoke against the abortion-on-demand legislation, citing moral objections and the potential for explosive future cost increases to Medicaid.
“I am a proud pro-life legislator,” Reis said. “I have stood on this House floor many times before in defense of the rights of the unborn and will continue to do so. Our taxpayer dollars should not be used in this way. The people of Illinois should not be forced to subsidize the termination of the innocent lives of the unborn.”
During debate questioning, the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Sara Feigenholtz (D-Chicago) admitted that the bill will expand the use of Medicaid to pay for elective abortions. The Governor’s Office of Management and Budget (GOMB) has estimated that the bill could result in an extra $60 million of Medicaid spending to cover abortions per year.
“The bill’s sponsor admitted that the bill allows women to choose abortions for any reason, during any stage of pregnancy,” Reis said. “This law would allow for taxpayer-funded abortion on demand. Our budget crisis alone should be enough to convince people to reject this kind of law. We can’t afford to spend one more dollar, let alone $60 million more for this barbaric practice.”
Also on Tuesday, hundreds of women descended on Springfield to march in support of equal pay for women, expanded abortion access, and a host of other issues. Reis says he was discouraged by the callous lack of self-awareness shown by the supporters of HB 40 and the women rallying at the Capitol on Tuesday.
“I found it incredibly sad that on ‘Women’s Day’ in Springfield, this kind of bill was debated,” Reis said. “There was no recognition by the sponsors of this bill or the marchers that millions of women’s lives were never even begun because abortion ended their lives. As a society, we are called to protect the most vulnerable among us. I believe to my core that protecting unborn children is of the highest of callings.”

Olney....To vote for Richland County Elementary School 2nd Grade to receive the first visit from Governor Rauner, please visit:

Springfield....State Representative David Reis (R - Willow Hill) is pictured here with Carmi resident and newly crowned Miss Illinois Teen USA Olivia Bohleber. Bohleber was in Springfield on Thursday February 16 to visit with lawmakers and share her platform. Olivia is currently a junior at Carmi High School. She is actively involved in cheerleading, track and field, Girls' Athletic Club, Student Council, KEY Club, STEM Club, Math Team, and the Maroon Platoon. As part of her duties as Miss Illinois Teen USA, Olivia is advocating on behalf of Operation Christmas Child and the Warriors for Ross Foundation which helps children suffering from pancreatic cancer.

"I want to thank Olivia for sharing time with us in Springfield and for visiting the House floor," Reis said. "Her resume is quite impressive already and the future is bright for her. I am very proud to have Miss Illinois Teen USA as a resident of my district. She is an excellent ambassador for the issues she cares so deeply about and I wish her the best of luck during this year of her reign."
Olney....State Representative David Reis (R - Willow Hill) issued information on several new laws for 2017 this week. Reis is a member of the Downstate Sportsman’s Caucus and outlined the measures that will go into effect on  January 1, that will have an impact on hunting, fishing and trap shooting in Illinois.

“It is important to educate the public to a slew of new laws that effect sportsmen and sportswomen in Southern Illinois,” Reis said. “With almost 191 new laws taking effect on January 1, tackling the list by subject makes sense, and the hunters, fisherman, and trap shooters of Illinois should know how the new laws will affect them.”

Permitting bowfishing for catfish Public Act 99-867, House Bill 5788
Bowfishing is the practice of taking a fish with a spear or a bow and arrow. Existing Illinois law limited the kinds of fish that can be taken through bowfishing. HB 5788 added catfish to the Fish Code list of fish that can be taken with sharp weaponry.

No catch limits on private fish ponds - Public Act 99-532, House Bill 5796
Illinois law limits the number of fish a person with a fishing license can legally catch in a 24 hour period. House Bill 5796 creates an exception for people fishing on fish ponds located on their own private property.

Youth Trapping Licenses - Public Act 99-868, Senate Bill 2410
Persons under the age of 18 may apply for a Youth Trapping License, which will grant to them limited trapping privileges. In order to trap or carry a hunting device, the youth must be accompanied by a parent, grandparent or guardian over 21 who has a valid Illinois hunting license.

Agriculture Education Teacher Grant Program Public Act 99-826, Senate Bill 2975
A school district may apply for a grant to fund 50% of the personal services cost for an agriculture education teacher, or if the school is creating a new agriculture education program, 100% of the cost in the first two years and 80% in the third and fourth years. This new act is subject to appropriation.

Landowner hunting permit procedures  - Public Act 99-869, Senate Bill 3003
Amending the Wildlife Code, SB 3003 allows owners and resident tenants who control 40 or more acres of land in Illinois to apply for and receive without fee deer permits, turkey permits or a combination deer/turkey permit. The law also applies to members of hunting clubs, partnerships or cooperatives if the group owns the land in question.

191 new laws take effect January 1, 2017. Here is a preview of 26 Illinoisans should know about:

Social media right to privacy - Public Act 99-610, House Bill 4999
Amends the Right to Privacy in the Workplace Act to make it illegal for an employer or prospective employer to request or require an employee or applicant to access a personal online account (such as Facebook) in the presence of the employer. It is also illegal to request or require that an employee or applicant invite the employer to join a group affiliated with any personal online account of the employee, or applicant, or join an online account established by the employer.

Employee Sick Leave Act - Public Act 99-841, House Bill 6162
Under the new law, employees may now use personal sick leave benefits for purposes dealing with a child, spouse, sibling, parent, mother-in-law, father-in-law, grandchild, grandparent or step parent. The employee can use such time as may be necessary on the same terms that employee would use the time for their own illness or injury.

Traffic stop education - Public Act 99-720, House Bill 6131
Students taking drivers education courses will now be educated on safe procedures to follow during a traffic stop by law enforcement. The lesson will include such tips as remaining calm and keeping one’s hands in view at all times and will also educate drivers on their rights when in the presence of law enforcement.

‘Taps’ at military funerals - Public Act 99-804, House Bill 4432
A student in sixth through twelfth grades at an Illinois public school is allowed to be absent from school if that student is sounding ‘Taps’ at a military funeral for a deceased veteran in Illinois. The legislation was suggested by a high school senior who estimated he had been called upon to render the honor at two dozen military funerals.

Vehicle registration date same as birthday - Public Act 99-644, House Bill 5651
The Secretary of State may allow an owner of a car or light truck to select his or her birthday as the motor vehicle’s registration expiration date.

Citizen Privacy Protection Act - Public Act 99-622, Senate Bill 2343
The new law limits the use of “Stingray” technology which collects information on all cell phones in its vicinity. Police using Stingray technology are now required to delete the information on all non-investigation-targets within 24 hours. Police are also forbidden from accessing such data for use in an investigation not authorized by a judge through a warrant or other process.

Molly’s Law - Public Acts 99-586 and 99-587, House Bills 4715 and 6083
Lengthens the statute of limitations to sue for wrongful death and to add stiffer financial penalties to the Illinois Freedom of Information Act for non-compliance. Molly’s Law is named for Molly Young, a Carbondale woman who was found dead of a gunshot wound. When Molly’s family sued for wrongful death, the statute of limitations ran out on them due to the length of time it took for crime scene and other case-related evidence to be released following years of FOIA requests and denials and delays.

Criminal Diversion Racial Impact Data Act Public Act 99-666, House Bill 1437
The Criminal Diversion Racial Impact Data Act requires the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority to report the number of persons arrested and released without charging and the racial and ethnic composition of those persons. The authority will report on the number of people for whom formal charges were dismissed, and the racial and ethnic composition of those persons, as well as the number of persons admitted to a diversion from prosecution program and the racial and ethnic composition of those persons.

Explaining consequences of guilty pleas - Public Act 99-871, House Bill 2569
Courts will no longer be allowed to accept guilty pleas from defendants until the court has fully explained to the defendant the consequences of such a plea. Before accepting a guilty plea, the court will have to explain to the defendant such things as the possibility of tougher sentences for future convictions, registration requirements and difficulty obtaining housing or a firearm.

Sexual Assault Incident Procedure Act - Public Act 99-801, Senate Bill 3096
By January 1, 2018, every law enforcement agency in Illinois must adopt, develop and implement a written policy regarding procedures for incidents of sexual assault or sexual abuse. A model policy will be developed by the Attorney General, Illinois Law Enforcement Training Standards Board and the State Police.

Domestic violence training for police - Public Act 99-810, House Bill 5538
Law enforcement agencies will be required to consult with community organizations with expertise in recognizing and handling domestic violence incidents when developing arrest procedure policies for domestic violence situations. For both initial training and refresher training every five years, officers shall be trained in understanding the actions of domestic violence victims and abusers.

More education for spotting domestic violence Public Act 99-766, House Bill 4264
Persons applying for licenses under the Barber, Cosmetology, Esthetics, Hair Braiding and Nail Technology Act will now be required to undergo training for spotting signs of domestic violence and sexual abuse. The law also provides that a person who has had the training and who acts in good faith or fails to act shall not be held criminally or civilly liable.

Local Government Travel Expense Control Act  -Public Act 99-604, House Bill 4379
School districts, community college districts and non-home rule units of local government will now be required to regulate expenses for travel, meals and lodging for local officials and employees. The expenses can only be approved after all documentation has been submitted and the approval is granted by a roll call vote. Reimbursement for entertainment expenses is prohibited by the new law.

Epinephrine Auto-Injector Act - Public Act 99-711, House Bill 4462
A health care practitioner may prescribe epinephrine auto-injectors in the name of an authorized entity where allergens capable of causing anaphylaxis may be present. All employees of the authorized entity would be required to complete a training program before using an auto-injector.

Expunging non-violent juvenile records - Public Act 99-835, House Bill 5017
Court records for non-violent crimes committed by juveniles can be expunged under this new law. Juveniles may petition the court at any time after the termination of all court proceedings relating to the incident, rather than having to wait until they turn 21.

Making room for disabled vehicles - Public Act 99-681, House Bill 6006
On a highway of four of more lanes, two of which are moving the in same direction, drivers approaching a disabled vehicle which has its hazard lights on must move into a lane not adjacent to the disabled vehicle if it is safe to do so, or must reduce speed if it is not. A violation of this law is a petty offense.

Expanding definition of “vehicle endangerment” - Public Act 99-656, House Bill 6010
Existing Illinois law already allows for punishing individuals who drop objects onto vehicles from overpasses. House Bill 6010 expands the law to include objects dropped from hills, buildings and other starting points. The crime is a Class 2 felony.

Bath Salts Prohibition Act - Public Act 99-585, Senate Bill 210
In response to the growing abuse of cathinone drugs in Illinois, the Bath Salts Prohibition Act creates the Class 3 felony offense of selling bath salts in a retail establishment. Violation of the law carries an enhanced fine of $150,000 and revocation of a retailers’ license.

REAL ID Compliance - Public Act 99-511, Senate Bill 637To bring Illinois into compliance with the federal REAL ID Act, SB 637 ends the practice of printing and distributing plastic ID cards at Secretary of State offices. Instead, Illinoisans will submit their renewal or new license information and it will be sent to a secure facility where a new license, which is much more difficult to counterfeit, will be produced and mailed to the applicant.

Higher fine for train crossing violations - Public Act 99-663, Senate Bill 2806
Fines for trespassing into a railroad grade crossing while warning signals are showing and sounding will double from $250 to $500 on January 1. The legislation is in response, in part, to faster Amtrak trains which will begin operating at 110 mph in parts of Illinois.

Sales of residences built by students - Public Act 99-794, Senate Bill 2823
If students in a curricular program at a school build or renovate a residential property, the school board can engage the services of a licensed real estate broker to sell the property. The board would have to approve the action by a 2/3 margin and the broker’s commission could not exceed 7%.

Carmi....Representative David Reis recently presented Carmi Mayor Jeff Pollard and City Clerk Brian Allen with House Resolution 1330, congratulating the city on its 200th anniversary.

From the resolution: “therefore be it RESOLVED, BY THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE NINETY-NINTH GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, that we congratulate Mayor Jeff Pollard and the citizens of Carmi as they celebrate the 200th anniversary of theircommunity and wish them many more years of success and prosperity in the future”

The full text of the resolution can be read by clicking here. Representative Reis created the resolution and presented it to the House of Representatives for passage.