December 19, 2019 •

Chicago Passes Lobbying Restrictions

Chicago City Hall

Chicago City Hall - Ken Lund

Chicago City Council voted to pass a lobbying ordinance on December 18. The ordinance prohibits city elected officials and employees from lobbying state or local government on behalf of private clients. Ordinance 2019-8541 also precludes elected officials anywhere in Illinois […]

Chicago City Council voted to pass a lobbying ordinance on December 18.

The ordinance prohibits city elected officials and employees from lobbying state or local government on behalf of private clients.

Ordinance 2019-8541 also precludes elected officials anywhere in Illinois from lobbying on behalf of private clients in Chicago.

In both circumstances, the ordinance carves out an exception for elected officials who are attorneys providing legal representation in certain administrative or legislative actions.

Ordinance 2019-8541 will become effective 90 days after passage and publication.

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December 18, 2019 •

Illinois Lobbyist Registration Delayed Until January 6

Illinois Capitol

Illinois State Capitol Building

The Office of the Secretary of State released a notice on December 17 that registration of lobbyists and lobbying entities will be delayed until January 6, 2020. The delay is due to the programming required to implement the registration changes […]

The Office of the Secretary of State released a notice on December 17 that registration of lobbyists and lobbying entities will be delayed until January 6, 2020.

The delay is due to the programming required to implement the registration changes required by Senate Bill 1639, which passed during the veto session in November.

Senate Bill 1639 requires lobbying entities to report if they are registered or expect to be required to register to lobby a unit of local government.

Additionally, the lobbying entity must disclose the name of the unit of local government.

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December 11, 2019 •

Chicago City Council Passes Lobbyist Restrictions

Chicago City Hall

Chicago City Hall - Ken Lund

The Chicago City Council Committee on Ethics and Government Oversight unanimously passed a proposal on December 4 to prohibit city elected officials and employees from lobbying state or local government on behalf of private clients. Proposed ordinance 2019-8541 also precludes […]

The Chicago City Council Committee on Ethics and Government Oversight unanimously passed a proposal on December 4 to prohibit city elected officials and employees from lobbying state or local government on behalf of private clients.

Proposed ordinance 2019-8541 also precludes elected officials anywhere in Illinois from lobbying on behalf of private clients in Chicago.

In both circumstances, the proposed ordinance carves out an exception for elected officials who are attorneys providing legal representation in certain administrative or legislative actions.

The proposal will be presented for a vote on December 18.

If approved, the ordinance would take effect 90 days after passage and publication.

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December 9, 2019 •

Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker Signs Lobbyist Disclosure Bill

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker - Chi Hack Night

Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed a bill on December 5 requiring increased disclosure from lobbyists. Senate Bill 1639 provides that lobbyist registration must include each unit of local government for which the registrant is or expects to be required to register […]

Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed a bill on December 5 requiring increased disclosure from lobbyists.

Senate Bill 1639 provides that lobbyist registration must include each unit of local government for which the registrant is or expects to be required to register to lobby, as well as each elected or appointed public office to be held by the registrant at any time during the registration period.

The bill also requires the secretary of state to create a combined online database for lobbyist disclosures, campaign contributions, and public officials’ annual statements of economic interest.

Senate Bill 1639 became effective when signed.

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November 15, 2019 •

Illinois Former Gaming Board Chairman Sues Ethics Commission

The former chairman of the Illinois Gaming Board filed suit against the state Executive Ethics Commission. The commission found that he engaged in unlawful political activity while a board member. The former chairman argued that state law does not bar […]

The former chairman of the Illinois Gaming Board filed suit against the state Executive Ethics Commission.

The commission found that he engaged in unlawful political activity while a board member.

The former chairman argued that state law does not bar contributions by members of state boards and that any such ban on contributions is a violation of the First Amendment.

The investigation began when the chairman contributed to a candidate for state senate and his spouse signed the check.

The Inspector General deemed suspicious 30 other instances of political donations and campaign contributions made while the chairman was on the gaming board.

While acknowledging that spouses of gaming board members are permitted to make contributions, the inspector general looked to the spouse’s history of contributing and to the number of contributions that were to the same committees her husband previously supported.

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November 15, 2019 •

Illinois Lawmakers Adjourn Veto Session, Approve Lobbying Measures

Illinois Capitol

Illinois State Capitol Building

Lawmakers concluded the fall veto session on November 14. The legislature approved Senate Bill 1639 to require state lobbyists to disclose more information to the public. Additionally, the bill creates a combined online database for information on lobbyists, campaign contributions, […]

Lawmakers concluded the fall veto session on November 14.

The legislature approved Senate Bill 1639 to require state lobbyists to disclose more information to the public.

Additionally, the bill creates a combined online database for information on lobbyists, campaign contributions, and public officials’ annual statements of economic interest.

An approved companion measure, House Joint Resolution 93, creates a 16-member commission to recommend additional changes to the ethics laws.

Among other changes, House Joint Resolution 93 would require state lobbyists to disclose any unit of local government that they lobby and any elected or appointed office they hold.

The proposal came on the final day of the veto session, which began in late October as then state Rep. Luis Arroyo was being charged in federal court in Chicago with bribing a state senator to support sweepstakes gambling legislation that would have benefited one of Arroyo’s City Hall lobbying clients.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker, who called for lawmakers to take up ethics legislation this week following the criminal charge against Arroyo, praised the measures as an important first step to increasing transparency.

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November 7, 2019 •

Illinois State Rep. Resigns After Federal Bribery Charge

Former Rep. Luis Arroyo

Former Rep. Luis Arroyo resigned from House District 3 on November 1 after facing a federal bribery charge. Prosecutors said Arroyo allegedly paid a bribe to a state senator in exchange for support of a gambling bill which would have […]

Former Rep. Luis Arroyo resigned from House District 3 on November 1 after facing a federal bribery charge.

Prosecutors said Arroyo allegedly paid a bribe to a state senator in exchange for support of a gambling bill which would have benefited one of Arroyo’s clients.

The state constitution requires the seat to be filled by appointment within 30 days of the vacancy.

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October 31, 2019 •

Illinois Lawmakers Convene for Veto Session

Illinois Capitol

Illinois State Capitol Building

Lawmakers are back in Springfield for a six-day abbreviated veto session to address major laws passed earlier this year. The veto session convened October 28 through October 30, and reconvenes from November 12 through November 14. The veto session agenda […]

Lawmakers are back in Springfield for a six-day abbreviated veto session to address major laws passed earlier this year.

The veto session convened October 28 through October 30, and reconvenes from November 12 through November 14.

The veto session agenda includes reviewing video gambling, marijuana, and vaping legislation.

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July 24, 2019 •

Chicago Lobbying Ordinance Passes

Chicago City Hall

Chicago City Hall - Ken Lund

City Council unanimously approved Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s ethics ordinance on July 24, changing the definition of lobbyist for purposes of registration. Ethics Ordinance 2019-5305 provides that a person acting on behalf of a nonprofit will not need to register as […]

City Council unanimously approved Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s ethics ordinance on July 24, changing the definition of lobbyist for purposes of registration.

Ethics Ordinance 2019-5305 provides that a person acting on behalf of a nonprofit will not need to register as a lobbyist if he or she is unpaid or is providing technical assistance to the nonprofit.

The ordinance will become effective 90 days after its passage and publication.

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July 23, 2019 •

Chicago Lobbying Ordinance Advances

Mayor Lori Lightfoot

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot - MacLean Center

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot is in the process of passing an ethics ordinance related to government ethics and lobbyist registration. Under Ethics Ordinance 2019-5305, a person acting on behalf of a nonprofit will not need to register as a lobbyist […]

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot is in the process of passing an ethics ordinance related to government ethics and lobbyist registration.

Under Ethics Ordinance 2019-5305, a person acting on behalf of a nonprofit will not need to register as a lobbyist if he or she is unpaid or is providing technical assistance to the nonprofit.

The full City Council is scheduled to consider the mayor’s ethics reform on July 24.

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June 5, 2019 •

Illinois General Assembly Spring Session Adjourns

Illinois Capitol

Illinois State Capitol Building

The 101st General Assembly adjourned its spring session on Sunday, June 2 after going into overtime to address Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s agenda. During the spring session, Senate Bill 1545 was introduced to prohibit a legislator from lobbying local government during […]

The 101st General Assembly adjourned its spring session on Sunday, June 2 after going into overtime to address Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s agenda.

During the spring session, Senate Bill 1545 was introduced to prohibit a legislator from lobbying local government during his or her term of office.

The bill provided that a violation would constitute a Class A misdemeanor. The bill made its way to the Assignments Committee on March 22.

Similarly, Senate Bill 180 was introduced to prohibit a legislator from seeking future employment with a lobbying entity if that entity engages in lobbying with members of the General Assembly during the legislator’s term of office.

Senate Bill 180 would also ban state officials for a period of one year of their term of office from engaging in compensated lobbying with members of the General Assembly.

The bill made its way to the Assignments Committee on March 22.

The General Assembly is scheduled to reconvene for a veto session in October.

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April 26, 2019 •

Chicago Releases New Lobbyist Ethics Training

The city of Chicago’s lobbyist ethics training for 2018-2019 is now available. The deadline to complete the mandatory training is before 11:59 p.m. on Monday, July 1. The ethics training course is available at the Chicago Board of Elections website.

The city of Chicago’s lobbyist ethics training for 2018-2019 is now available.

The deadline to complete the mandatory training is before 11:59 p.m. on Monday, July 1.

The ethics training course is available at the Chicago Board of Elections website.

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March 5, 2019 •

Chicago Revises Lobbyist Ethics Training

The city of Chicago is currently revising its mandatory lobbyist ethics training course for 2018-2019. Program Director Edward Primer of the Chicago Board of Ethics said he anticipates the training will be available in mid-March. A notice will be sent […]

The city of Chicago is currently revising its mandatory lobbyist ethics training course for 2018-2019.

Program Director Edward Primer of the Chicago Board of Ethics said he anticipates the training will be available in mid-March.

A notice will be sent to all registered lobbyists when the training becomes available.

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February 27, 2019 •

Illinois Introduces Bill to Create Contribution Matching Fund

Illinois introduced legislation to create a small donor campaign contribution matching fund for candidates for certain offices, including governor, State Treasurer, and Secretary of State. House Bill 3712 introduced by Rep. Kelly M. Cassidy would require the General Assembly to […]

Illinois introduced legislation to create a small donor campaign contribution matching fund for candidates for certain offices, including governor, State Treasurer, and Secretary of State.

House Bill 3712 introduced by Rep. Kelly M. Cassidy would require the General Assembly to appropriate no more than $50 million to the small donor matching fund in any election cycle.

The bill also establishes penalties for violations by participating candidates in the form of a fine in an amount equal to twice the value of the funding unlawfully accepted or spent.

If passed, the bill would become effective immediately.

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