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Stand Up Against Minimum Wage Decrease

Per The People’s Lobby – Last fall, The People’s Lobby moved the Cook County Board of Commissioners to raise the minimum wage from $8.25 up to $13, starting with an increase to $10 just two weeks from now — on July 1, 2017. Unfortunately, some suburban municipalities are attempting to reverse this victory by passing ordinances to opt-out. In other words, they’re voting to decrease the minimum wage!

When voters in these municipalities took up the questions of paid sick leave and a higher minimum wage in non-binding ballot referendums in recent years, they voted overwhelmingly in favor of allowing workers to earn sick time and mandating a higher minimum wage. These elected officials are putting the interests of the Chamber of Commerce ahead of what the vast majority of local voters think is best for their communities!

We fought hard for this minimum wage increase, and we are organizing grassroots opposition to these votes to decrease the minimum wage. But despite our best efforts, we are losing some of these votes.

Although we wish we didn’t have to fight to preserve the higher minimum wage, every fight is an opportunity to identify people who share our values and grow our power in the suburbs so that we can win bigger and lasting victories in the future.

These are upcoming opt-out votes. If you know someone in (or on the border of) these municipalities, please forward this email and ask them to attend:

  • Mon 6/19 6:30p – Des Plaines, 1420 Miner St. (to take a 2nd vote to try to opt out)
  • Mon 6/19 7:00p – Oak Park, 123 Madison St. (OAK PARK HAS DECIDED TO NOT OPT-OUT!!! Press conference and then enter the meeting to thank the city council!)
  • Tue 6/27 7:00p – Wilmette, 1200 Wilmette Ave.

Check back here for the latest updates regarding this struggle.

Greens in Springfield to Support a People & Planet First Budget!

ILGP_sunflower_thumbnail.pngThis month, The People's Lobby and Fair Economy Illinois launched an amazing 200-mile, 15-day march from Chicago to Springfield in support of a People and Planet First Budget. They have been marching since May 15th, and will be marching to the state capitol on May 30th to present lawmakers with a budget that puts the actual citizens of Illinois first -- not private, corporate interests.

The Illinois Green Party supports and endorses both the People and Planet First Budget and the March to Springfield. We are asking all ILGP members able to make the trip to rally with the marchers in Springfield on their final day, Tuesday May 30th! 

Use the ILGP sign-up sheet to join our group in supporting the March to Springfield and the People & Planet First Budget!

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ILGP Endorses Industrial Hemp Bill (SB1294)

2017-05-21: The Illinois Green Party Coordinating Committee endorsed the Illinois General Assembly Industrial Hemp Bill (SB1294). The Illinois Green Party supports legalization of industrial hemp, a remarkably versatile product with numerous applications, that can provide a valuable source of income for farmers.

ILGP Endorses Trust Act Bills (SB31 & HB3099)

2017-05-21: The Illinois Green Party Coordinating Committee endorsed the Illinois General Assembly Trust Act Bills (SB31 & HB3099). These bills would make Illinois a Welcoming State by limiting Illinois law enforcement's cooperation with federal immigration officers and prohibit Illinois law enforcement from detaining individuals solely on the basis of immigration status.

ILGP Endorses Legalization of Cannabis Bills (HB2353 & SB316)

2017-04-16: The Illinois Green Party Coordinating Committee endorsed the Illinois General Assembly Legalization of Cannabis Bills (HB2353 & SB316).

Much of the U.S. prison-overcrowding problem stems from our society's misguided attempt to legislate morality by criminalizing the use of drugs. It is senseless to punish people for using a relatively benign substance like marijuana while the use of more harmful substances like alcohol, tobacco, and many pharmaceutical drugs is encouraged through mass advertising.

The prohibition of more addictive drugs such as cocaine or heroin only ensures that the price remains so high that many addicts must turn to theft or prostitution to feed their habit.

We advocate a more sensible policy: Cannabis should be legalized, with legal use restricted to adults. The penalties for simple possession and use of other drugs should be greatly reduced.

Serious substance abuse problems of all kinds, including alcohol and tobacco, should be dealt with as a public health matter, not as a criminal matter, with more resources devoted to drug education, treatment and social intervention.

A sensible policy on drug abuse and crime should also eliminate the hypocrisy, double standards and injustices that permeate the criminal justice system today.

For the Illinois Green Party's complete position on drug legalization and decriminalization, see Section R. (Crime and Criminal Justice) of the Illinois Green Party Platform.

ILGP Endorses Eminent Domain - Trial by Jury Bill (HB2532)

2017-04-16: The Illinois Green Party Coordinating Committee endorsed the Illinois General Assembly Eminent Domain - Trial by Jury Bill (HB2532).

HB 2532- House Amendment 1 - Fact Sheet

1. Why do we need this bill? What prompted its introduction? HB 2532 protects private landowners when private companies attempt to seize land through the use of eminent domain.  The Eminent Domain Act in Illinois prevents the use of eminent domain to seize private property for public use without just compensation.  It also grants the owner of the property the right to have the amount of that just compensation determined by a jury.  However, in 2015, a judge in McLean County allowed a private company to seize private property after determining the amount of the just compensation himself. By allowing the private company to seize the land immediately, the court removed the eminent domain protections and power specifically granted to private property owners by the Eminent Domain Act.  Thus, the court essentially eliminated a substantial portion of the Act.

2. If this bill becomes law, will it prevent governmental bodies from expediting infrastructure projects that truly need to begin immediately, such as roads?  No. Two sections of the Act, Quick-take Procedure and Express Quick-take Powers allow the Illinois Legislature to grant specific bodies and projects to proceed without the completion of a jury trial.  For example, Sec. 25-7-103.1 states, “Quick-take proceedings under Article 20 may be used by the State of Illinois, the Illinois Toll Highway Authority or the St. Louis Metropolitan Area Airport Authority for the acquisition of land or interests therein for highway purposes.”  In addition, HB 2532 specifically exempts Quick-take Procedure and Express Quick-take Powers from the jury verdict requirement.

3. What is the purpose of the inclusion of “Section 8-406.1 of the Public Utilities Act” in the bill?  The Illinois Future Energy Jobs Bill contains specific targets for renewable energy.  To allow for potential electrical grid modernization, in addition to specifically exempting the Quick-take sections of Eminent Domain Act, HB 2532 also exempts high voltage electric service lines.

Other supporters:

350 Chicago Frack Free Illinois 
350 Indiana-Calumet  Fox Valley Citizens for Peace and Justice
 350 Kishwaukee  Illinois People’s Action (IPA)
 Chicagoland Oil By Rail  National Nurses Organizing Committee
 Earthseed  National Nurses United
 Elgin Green Groups350 (EGG350)  Save Our Illinois Land (SOIL)
 Food and Water Watch - Illinois  Sierra Club – Blackhawk Group
 Forest City 350  Southern Illinoisans Against Fracturing our Environment (SAFE)

ILGP Endorses Minimum Wage Increase Bill (HB198)

2017-04-16: The Illinois Green Party Coordinating Committee endorsed the Illinois General Assembly Minimum Wage Increase Bill (HB198). This bill calls for raising the Illinois minimum wage to $9 per hour in 2018, effective Jan. 1, 2018 and then $10 in 2019, $11.25 in 2020, $13 in 2021 and $15 in 2021.

ILGP Endorses Ranked Choice Voting Bill (SB780)

2017-04-16: The Illinois Green Party Coordinating Committee endorsed the Illinois General Assembly Ranked Choice Voting Bill (SB780)This bill calls for members of the General Assembly and the offices of Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, Secretary of State, Comptroller, and Treasurer to be elected by ranked choice voting. 

Ranked choice voting eliminates the so-called "spoiler effect" because it uses a method of casting and tabulating votes in which voters rank candidates in order of preference, tabulation proceeds in sequential rounds in which last-place candidates are defeated and the candidate with the majority of votes in the final round is elected.

Ranked choice voting eliminates the necessity for voting for the lesser evil.  Citizens can finally vote their values, not their fears.

ILGP Endorses Financial Transaction Tax Bill (SB1970)

2017-03-19: The Illinois Green Party Coordinating Committee has endorsed Illinois General Assembly Senate Bill SB1970, a new version of the proposed "LaSalle Street Tax." This would place a tax of $1 or $2 on trades of options, futures, and other derivatives (average contract value: aprox. $285,000 per trade) at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, Board Options Exchange, and Board of Trade.

If enacted, the tax would raise an estimated $12 billion a year, which would eliminate Illinois' structural deficit and allow us to adequately fund our schools, higher education and vital services, while paying down the state's public pension debt.

ILGP Endorses Criminal Forfeiture Procedures Bill (HB689)

2017-03-19: The Illinois Green Party Coordinating Committee endorsed the Illinois General Assembly Criminal Forfeiture Procedures Bill (HB689). This bill will make it easier to reclaim civil forfeitures when if a person is found not guilty.