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Today the House voted 69-46 to raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour within six years. Below is a statement from State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R-Kankakee):

“Illinois is unfriendly to job creators. Illinois’ excessive workers' compensation insurance, high taxes, and highest minimum wage in the region, damages and degrades our business climate.

I am disappointed Democrats continue the assault on Illinois’ small businesses by passing the minimum wage hike with no negotiation and no input from the Republicans. They simply passed the bill from the Senate without entertaining Republican concerns or suggestions for amendments.  This incremental wage increase results in an 82% increase in labor costs for businesses. Inevitably, stores will close, jobs will be lost, prices will increase, and those who Democrats intend to help will only be hurt. History supports this result as this happened in Illinois when it increased the minimum wage in 2010 from $7.25 per hour to $8.25 per hour.

This law affects the State Budget because it significantly increases costs to the state government. Governor Pritzker’s administration estimates the cost by 2025 will be more than a billion dollars to state government. This conservative estimate does not cover any additional pension costs the state pension systems will incur, the matching federal employer tax, or the costs to our state universities, colleges, local school districts, municipalities, park districts, and other local governments.

Democrats argue the tax credit available to businesses helps offset the costs incurred by businesses, but any business who pays more than minimum wage is not eligible. Employers with more than fifty employees are not eligible. The local movie theater, grocery store, or restaurant is not eligible under this model.

The reality is the majority of those earning minimum wage are individuals just joining the workforce. Increasing the minimum wage will only serve as a barrier to success in the future by limiting job experience because the jobs are lost or significantly reduced. This shortsighted measure will drive businesses and commerce to our neighboring states where prices are cheaper. It will raise property taxes by increasing labor costs for our local governments as an unfunded mandate.

Illinois needs real reforms to encourage business growth and good wages. This measure does the opposite and is why I voted no on SB1. 

State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R – Kankakee), has signed as chief co-sponsor of an amendment to the Illinois Constitution filed in the House of Representatives. The amendment takes the map drawing process out of the hands of politicians and establishes an independent commission to draw the legislative maps. This commission ensures the maps do not favor one party over the other.

“Politicians draw legislative maps every ten years to pick their constituents instead of allowing the people to choose their representatives,” Rep. Parkhurst stated.

The amendment, HJRCA 10, was introduced by House Republican Leader Jim Durkin (R – Western Springs) and has 44 co-sponsors.  
Today the House voted 73-42 to approve the House Rules set forth by Speaker Madigan. Below is a statement from State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R-Kankakee):

“I am disappointed my colleagues voted to reelect Rep. Madigan as Speaker for an 18th term. Madigan’s House Rules continuously consolidate his power and allow ultimate control of the House of Representatives.  This power denies the people the representative government they are entitled to in this state. In 2018, a Federal lawsuit proceeded alleging the Speaker violated the 14th Amendment rights of his own constituency. It is clear Speaker Madigan should not be Speaker. It is obvious his rules do not work for the Illinois House of Representatives or Illinois. The House Republican proposed amendments to the House Rules to enhance our legislative process by providing transparency and reasserting representative democracy.  Illinois deserves a true representative government. The House Majority voted for Speaker Madigan’s rules reaffirming business as usual with all the power to the Speaker.

Prepare Now for Winter Weather

The threat of potential life-threatening, record-breaking wind chills has prompted the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) to begin coordinating with other state agencies on response capabilities if assistance were to become necessary.

Emergency Closing Center has a compiled list of school closings that can be found by clicking here.

To find a warming center near you click here.

It is important to check in with your neighbors. Please direct any seniors that you know may need help to the Senior HelpLine 1800-252-8966.

Kankakee, IL – On Thursday, Governor Pritzker signed SB 337, Gun Dealer Licensing, to require state licensing of all Illinois gun stores. Below is a statement from State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R-Kankakee):

“Sworn into office only days ago, Governor Pritzker began his assault on our 2nd Amendment rights. I voted “No” on this bill because this licensing is duplicitous and grows the regulatory burden on our gun stores. Not only do our gun stores already require federal licensing through the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), this bill requires licensing through the Illinois State Police, and steep fees for the state license small and local shops simply cannot afford. The result is more restricted access to exercise our 2nd Amendment rights. I am disappointed in Governor Pritzker’s disregard for the 2nd Amendment.”