Kankakee, IL – State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R-Kankakee) reintroduced legislation aimed at reviving and redeveloping the area around the Kankakee River. House Bill 4172 amends the River Edge Redevelopment Zone Act to allow for a zone in Kankakee.

“This bill will help revive and redevelop the area around the Kankakee River. The river is vital to our city and our community should be able to participate in this successful growth initiative. While many of the current enterprise zones in the 79th District are beneficial, a redevelopment zone will help areas adjacent to the river emerge out of economic stagnation,” Rep. Parkhurst said.

The River Edge Redevelopment Zone Act, passed in 2006, is currently authorized only for Aurora, East St. Louis, Elgin, Peoria, and Rockford. The law is designed to help stimulate the economy adjacent to rivers in Illinois with property, sales, and income tax incentives.

HB 4172 was introduced on Tuesday, November 21 and awaits committee assignment.

Kankakee, IL – On Monday, State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R-Kankakee), met with Republican House Leader Jim Durkin (R – Western Springs) , the head of the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), Randy Blankenhorn, Kankakee Mayor Chasity Wells-Armstrong, and City of Kankakee Engineer Neil Piggush to advocate for local transportation projects including much needed improvements to the I-57 and IL-17 interchange—Exit 312.

“When I took office in January, this was one of the first projects I focused on because of the hugely beneficial impact it will have on Kankakee and Bradley-Bourbonnais businesses and the development of my entire district,” Rep. Parkhurst said.

The project in question will open up the 312 exit to Kankakee off I-57 to allow for safer and easier truck traffic. The city of Kankakee requested an upgrade to the interchange well over a decade ago and the need for improvements lingered and languished in discussions since 2001. The discussions stalled in 2013.

“This exit improvement project will usher in further economic development to the district,” Rep. Parkhurst continued. “Today trucks avoid this intersection because of the tight turn radius, yet this area is ripe for new economic development. Everything is in place; we just need improved access at the intersection of Routes 57 and 17. These improvements are important to businesses relocating to our district, including Hoekstra Transportation and Ricky Rockets Fuel Center.”

Rep. Parkhurst initiated the site inspection with the Leader Durkin, the head of IDOT, and the City of Kankakee to continue to push for phase II of this project.

In addition to this interchange, Rep. Parkhurst is actively negotiating with IDOT on other local transportation projects.
Kankakee, IL – State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R – Kankakee) filed legislation last week to address the current substitute teacher shortage. The legislation, HB 4167, comes at the request of local educators and amends the school code to allow students enrolled in an educator preparation program at an accredited institution of higher education to apply for a substitute teacher license provided the student accumulated 90 credit hours.

“After listening to educators in the 79th district, it is apparent college seniors studying to be teachers and enrolled in an accredited teaching program have the training and skills needed to be a substitute teacher. Schools and teachers are affected by the substitute teacher shortage and are stretched to the limit. This bill aims to address this problem by including future educators to assist our current ones,” Rep. Parkhurst said about the bill.

Rep. Parkhurst introduced HB 4167 on Thursday, November 16 and it awaits committee assignment.

Kankakee, IL – On Wednesday, Republican Leader Jim Durkin (R – Western Springs) appointed State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R – Kankakee) to the House Task Force on Sexual Discrimination and Harassment.

“It is about time the General Assembly addressed sexual harassment.  Anyone can be a victim of sexual violence and harassment.  I’ve represented victims in these type of cases and victims must not be intimidated into silence or feel powerless or embarrassed to stand up to their perpetrator, especially at the top levels of our state government. I will work in a bipartisan manner with my colleagues to recommend robust prevention and response strategies, fair and equitable policies and procedures, comprehensive and relevant education and training, and appropriate corrective actions and strategies,“ Rep. Parkhurst said.

The House Task Force on Sexual Discrimination and Harassment was created this year with the passage of House Resolution 687. The task force's charge is to conduct a comprehensive review of the legal and social consequences of sexual discrimination and harassment, in both the public and private sectors, and make recommendations to the General Assembly.  A full report is to be made by December 31st, 2018.

Kankakee, IL – State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R – Kankakee) is proud to partner with the Marine Corps Reserve for the Toys for Tots program. The 79th District Toys for Tots is the main project in November and December for Rep. Parkhurst.

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“Our goal is to help economically challenged children in the 79th District enjoy a Merry Christmas and have Happy Holidays. Toys for Tots starts in November. Please look for a donation box and donate a new, unwrapped toy for a child in need.” Rep. Parkhurst said.

Collection boxes are located at Herscher High School, Gardner-South Wilmington High School, Momence High School, DK Apparel in St. Anne, Village of Bourbonnais Village Hall, Kankakee Public Library, and the 79th District office in Kankakee. Registration to receive toys will be at Northfield Square on November 16 and 28 – 30 from 4 pm to 7 pm. For any questions, comments, or concerns, please call the District office at 815-523-7779.

Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R – Kankakee) today released the following statement on the announcement the Bourbonnais Nucor Plant will receive the $180 million merchant bar expansion project:

“It is satisfying and exciting to see our efforts effectively assist our area in receiving the Nucor merchant bar expansion. The expansion will add up to 100 new jobs and represents an investment of $180 million.  This is huge for the 79th District. I was proud to lead this coordinated, multifaceted effort between Nucor, Governor Rauner, House Republican Leader Jim Durkin (R—Western Springs), and the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) to garner support for and ultimately the selection of Bourbonnais Nucor for this expansion. Utility partners ComEd and Nicor Gas are commended for working to ensure this investment came to fruition. I thank Nucor for its commitment to their team members, our community, and our state.”

Kankakee, IL – State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R – Kankakee) is partnering with the Illinois Department of Insurance (DOI) to host a seminar for the 2018 Open Enrollment season.

“The Open Enrollment period is shorter this year and DOI improved their website to provide an easier experience. To help constituents navigate the new Marketplace, I am partnering with the DOI to host this seminar for constituents who need insurance for 2018.” Rep. Parkhurst said.

The seminar will be on November 28, 2017, from 2 pm to 4 pm at the Kankakee District office. A representative from the Department of Insurance will provide information about the 2018 enrollment.

Rep. Parkhurst’s District Office is located at 370 E. Court St. Constituents with questions may contact her on her website at www.repparkhurst.com or by calling 815-523-7779.

Springfield, IL – On Tuesday, the Illinois State House of Representatives voted to override the total veto of the Student Loan Servicing Rights Bill. State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R – Kankakee) commented on her vote:

“The House considered and voted to override the Student Loan Servicing Act veto this evening. I voted yes on the override because it is clear student borrowers need protection. Some student loan servicers engage in predatory lending practices. This bill requires licensure in Illinois and establishes standards and requirements for servicing federal and private student loans."

Kankakee, IL – State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R – Kankakee) this week filed legislation to strengthen individual property rights in Illinois.  The goal is to curb the practice of using eminent domain for private gain. The legislation, HB 4150, amends the eminent domain act to strengthen eminent domain laws to make sure property acquisition is for a necessary public purpose and removes languages referring to freight railroads.

“Eminent Domain should be used only in appropriate circumstances truly necessary for public use. We must not allow our government to take private property for private gain. This bill is intended to strengthen private property rights and prevent the taking of private land for private gain such as the attempt by the Great Lakes Basin Railway,” Rep. Parkhurst said about the bill.

Parkhurst introduced HB 4150 on Monday, November 6 and it awaits committee assignment.