04252017CM1305rSPRINGFIELD — State Sen. Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood) issued the following statement in response to the Illinois General Assembly Retirement System (GARS) board voting to take away Dennis Hastert’s pension:

“Dennis Hastert used his trusted position as a teacher and coach to prey on his young victims. I am glad that the board voted to ensure he doesn’t receive his taxpayer-subsidized pension.”

The board’s decision was despite an unofficial opinion from the Attorney General’s office that said the board could not legally take away his pension. All they could do at most was diminishing the pension payout.

Last year, the Teacher’s Retirement System (TRS) revoked Hastert’s teacher’s pension.

Bertino-Tarrant last fall sent a letter to GARS asking that it immediately take steps to suspend Hastert’s public pension benefits.

Category: Press Releases

JBT SB1382 ReleaseSPRINGFIELD— Legislation that would keep tax credits in place for employers contributing to their employees’ college accounts has been introduced by State Sen. Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood).

The tax credit is set to expire in 2020, but Bertino-Tarrant’s plan would extend it to 2025. The senator’s legislation also increases the tax credit amount an employer would be eligible for by $500.

“This tax credit is an important tool for incentivizing employers to help their employees pay for college,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “I am proud to be working with the Illinois Treasurer’s Office to sponsor legislation that would benefit both workers and businesses.”

The tax credit is provided to employers that match an employee’s contribution to a qualified Illinois prepaid tuition program, such as Bright Start or College Illinois.

Bertino-Tarrant’s proposal, Senate Bill 1382, increases the maximum annual tax credit provided to employers that match an employee’s contribution to qualified college savings and prepaid tuition accounts from $500 to $1,000 per employee.

The Treasurer’s Office believes that more employers will participate if the credit is extended another five years. Employers have expressed concerns about the tax credit expiring.

Increasing the tax credit should also encourage more employers to participate and contribute at higher amounts.

Category: Press Releases

JBT SenateBill189SPRINGFIELD— Legislation that would end deadlines for when someone could be prosecuted for sexual abuse against a minor was approved by the Illinois Senate yesterday.

State Sen. Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood) voted for the measure and is its chief co-sponsor.

“Passing this measure in the Senate was a positive step for victims’ rights and justice,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “If someone has been sexually abused, they deserve the time they need to report the crime and confront their abuser. We must do everything we can to protect victims and hold abusers accountable.”

Under the legislation, the statute of limitations would be removed if the victim is under 18 years of age for criminal sexual assault, aggravated criminal sexual assault, predatory criminal sexual assault of a child, aggravated criminal sexual abuse and felony criminal sexual abuse.

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan is a proponent of the initiative. Scott Cross, one of former U.S. Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert’s victims of sexual abuse, has also previously testified in support of the legislation.

In Hastert’s high-profile case, he did not face charges for sexual abuse he admitted to because the statute of limitations for those offenses had expired.

Bertino-Tarrant previously pushed for Hastert’s public pensions to be taken away. Additionally, the senator sponsored legislation last year that would have removed legal deadlines for prosecuting sex abuse crimes against minors.

Senate Bill 189 will now have to be approved by the Illinois House before going to the governor’s desk for consideration.

Category: Press Releases

nurse prison 4PLAINFIELD — In response to the Rauner administration telling prison nurses that their jobs are being outsourced, State Sen. Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood) issued the following statement:

“There are 17 nurses whose jobs at Stateville Correctional Facility are going to be outsourced. With Illinois not having a budget, the last thing the Governor should be doing is creating more chaos in state government.

From a management perspective, this decision doesn’t make much sense. Outsourcing services would likely lead to less supervisory oversight and more problems in our correctional facilities. The governor has made the wrong decision.”

It was reported yesterday that Gov. Rauner sent a letter to Alice Johnson, executive director for the Illinois Nurses Association, announcing that 124 unionized nurses working in 12 Illinois prisons will be laid off effective June 15.

Category: Press Releases

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