Kankakee, IL – On Thursday, the Illinois State House of Representatives voted on bills for a budget plan for the FY 2019 state budget. State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R-Kankakee) commented on her votes:

“I applaud the bipartisan effort to present a negotiated and compromised budget, HB 109 and the budget implementation. However, I voted no because the budget does not go far enough to fix our state, but only continues the status quo. It is not a truly balanced budget. It relies on precarious assumptions including one-time revenues from the sale of the Thompson Center. The budget also fails to offer the reforms our state needs to make us competitive. There are no pension reforms, no workers compensation system reforms, no property tax relief, and does not adequately address the state’s six billion dollar bill backlog. This budget simply does not do enough to put Illinois on a path towards long-term fiscal health”

The budget bill, HB 109, passed the House 97-18 and now heads to the governor’s desk for consideration.

Kankakee, IL - On Memorial Day, the Illinois General Assembly adopted a resolution sponsored by State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R – Kankakee) to rename the Armor Road overpass in Bradley, IL.

“This resolution is important to the people of Bradley, their police department, and the Lewis family. By designating this overpass, we honor the memory and service of fallen officer Sgt. Lewis in the line of duty,” said Rep. Parkhurst.

The resolution, HJR 81 designates the Armor Road Overpass as the Sgt. Wilford Ray "Wil" Lewis Memorial Overpass in Bradley, IL. Sgt. Lewis was a member of the Loyal Order of the Moose and the Bourbonnais Bass Anglers Club and gave his life in the line of duty on November 20, 1997 after serving 22 years with the Bradley Police Department.

HJR 81 passed the House on March 1st unanimously in a 101-0 vote and the Senate on May 28th in a 51-0 vote. The resolution is now adopted by both Houses.

Kankakee, IL - State Rep. Lindsay Parkhurst is officially launching her 2nd Annual Summer Reading Club for elementary school students who live in the 79th District. The program is offered to encourage students to keep their minds active over the summer and promote continued learning.

This year's theme is 'Reading Takes you Everywhere’ because every book is a new adventure, taking kids places they've never been before. The program challenges 1st - 5th graders to read 8 books over the summer.

Pamphlets have been distributed to local libraries, but are also available for pickup at Rep. Parkhurst’s District Office or online here. Participation in this program can overlap with any other summer reading program offered through area libraries or other organizations.

Participants will be invited to an ice cream party and receive a certificate from the Illinois House of Representatives. To earn your spot at the ice cream party, a parent or guardian must fill out and sign the form and return it to Rep. Parkhurst's office in Kankakee by August 10th.

Kankakee, IL – In mid-April, State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R – Kankakee) sponsored legislation to stimulate construction projects in the State of Illinois and create jobs for the middle class. The legislation, HB 5864, is the Blue Collar Jobs Act.

“With this bill, we are sending a message to companies around the country Illinois is open for business,” Rep. Parkhurst said. “Nothing helps the middle class more than well-paying jobs which this bill is designed to create.”

Both labor and business groups support The Blue Collar Jobs Act and it offers tax incentives to companies making significant capital improvements in Illinois based on the withholding tax paid to construction workers through the creation of four new tax credits, including:
High Impact Business construction jobs credit
Enterprise Zone construction jobs credit
New Construction EDGE Credit
River Edge construction jobs credit

“We support prioritizing Illinois construction workers in our state’s economic development toolset through incentives for new construction, expansion, and rehabilitation projects,” said Marc Poulos, Executive Director IN, IL, IA FFC, the labor-management group of the International Union of Operating Engineers, Local 150.

The tax credit is meant to incentivize the company to construct new buildings or improve existing buildings which cannot be built without the use of Illinois labor.

“The Blue Collar Jobs Act gives growing businesses another reason to make substantial capital investments in Illinois to bring more jobs and opportunities to our state,” said Todd Maisch, President and CEO of the Illinois Chamber of Commerce.

The tax credits only become available after the work is fully completed. There is no risk to the state for a company not meeting its requirement as the state has already captured the withholding tax prior to the tax credit being issued.

HB 5864 was introduced by Rep. Keith Wheeler (R – Oswego) on April 19th and is waiting to be assigned to committee.
Kankakee, IL – State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst today announced progress being made on the Interstate 57 and Illinois State Highway 17 junction in Kankakee, Exit 312.

“Since I entered office last year, I worked to move along this necessary infrastructure project in Kankakee because of the huge benefit it has on Kankakee, Bradley, and Bourbonnais,” Rep. Parkhurst stated.

Rep. Parkhurst met with the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) Secretary Randy Blankenhorn, Republican House Leader Jim Durkin (R – Western Springs), and City of Kankakee officials last fall to advocate for local infrastructure improvements including the 312 Exit project which has stalled for 15 years.

Since the meeting, IDOT stated the Phase I study is now on-going again and should be completed in 2018.  Phase II is included in the Multi-Year Improvement Program (MYP) ’19-’24.

“I am happy to see our community efforts successfully reactivated this project and I will continue to work to move the project forward,” Rep. Parkhurst stated.