Bertino Tarrant2016cSPRINGFIELD – Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant (D-SHOREWOOD) released the following statement in response to Governor Rauner’s state of the state address:

“For the last three years, Gov. Bruce Rauner has given the same speech. Yet for the last three years, we have been waiting for him to make a genuine effort to work with us. The governor’s speeches and soundbites are far from reality. Meanwhile, schools are still waiting for their funding and we are waiting for the governor to quit attacking and to reach across the aisle.”

03142017AM4965rSPRINGFIELD- State Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood) supported a measure today to restore certainty and stability to Will County schools.

Bertino-Tarrant joined her colleagues in the Illinois State Senate to override Governor Rauner’s veto of Senate Bill 444, a technical piece of legislation previously requested by the governor’s administration to help clarify and quickly implement school funding reform. His veto of the measure did the opposite of that.

“The senate worked together to end the chaos and uncertainty created by the governor’s administration,” said Bertino-Tarrant, chairwoman of the Senate’s education committee. “Instead of communicating his concerns to his own administration or the General Assembly, Governor Rauner issued a veto to further delay the implementation of bipartisan education funding reform. It is unacceptable that he sat on his hands until the last possible minute to once again create instability for schools across Illinois.”

Last week, governor’s agencies, the Illinois State Board of Education and Department of Revenue were able to quickly work together to address the governor’s concerns outlined in his veto message.

Bertino-Tarrant thinks it is concerning that the governor decided to work unilaterally to delay school funding reform rather than talking to state agencies, under his administration’s management, to solve the problem.

“How is the governor supposed to work with the General Assembly if he is unable to work with his own agencies,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “This is another example of the governor’s lack of leadership. Working together means communicating and be an active partner in making sure government is working for the citizens of Illinois. Somehow these beliefs are lost to him.”

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03012017CM0381WebPLAINFIELD- State Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood) advanced legislation to ensure public schools are funded adequately before any state funds are diverted to pay for tax breaks to wealthy individuals and corporate scholarship donors. 

“This initiative solidifies our bipartisan goal to fund our public schools in a way that guarantees our children are provided an excellent education regardless of their zip code,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “Every single dollar in state education spending should go toward the adequate education of our children until the disparities created by generations of systematic inequality in Illinois’ school system are fixed.”

Bertino-Tarrant’s measure, Senate Bill 2236, was filed in response to Senate Bill 1947, which includes a five-year pilot program that would award a 75 percent tax credit to donors that contribute to scholarship funds for students to attend non-public schools. The credits are capped at of up to $1 million per taxpayer and $75 million statewide.  

“Public education should be the top priority,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “It is unacceptable that these tax credits are diverting resources away from the classroom.”

Bertino-Tarrant said this could take valuable taxpayer dollars away from Illinois’ public schools especially if the minimum funding level is not met.   

“The bipartisan reform passed in the Senate and House stipulated that the General Assembly shall meet the minimum funding level each year. This new measure simply helps guarantee the legislature stays true to its promises,” Bertino-Tarrant said.

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dataprivacy 012818In honor of Data Privacy Day, here are a few easy and quick ways to protect your sensitive personal information.

Create better passwords:

Changing and creating innovative passwords can go a long way toward protecting your information. Using a password that is easy to guess does not protect your sensitive data in our tech-savvy world.

Even though it is difficult to remember different passwords for each of your accounts, experts all agree that users should not use the same or similar passwords in all instances. If someone does discover your password for one account, all of your other accounts will then be vulnerable.

It is beneficial to include numbers, symbols and both uppercase and lowercase letters (depending on password rules set up by the program, app or website). The best passwords avoid using words that can be found in the dictionary.

Experts also are divided on whether you should change your passwords frequently, but if there’s any chance one of yours has been stolen in a breach, it is important to change it right away.

Don't use Social Security numbers, phone numbers, addresses, or other personally identifiable information as passwords.

Using numbers or combinations associated with other personally identifiable information as all or even part of your passwords is a huge security risk.

Don't use any part of your social security number (or any other sensitive info, like a credit card number) as a password, user ID or personal identification number (PIN).

If a hacker gains access to this information, it will be among the first things they use to try to get into your account.

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