jbt gibillSPRINGFIELD— Veterans attending Illinois colleges and universities would qualify for instate tuition rates under a proposed law State Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood) guided to the governor’s desk this week.

“Those who serve our nation deserve our utmost respect,” said Bertino-Tarrant, Senate sponsor of HB3692. “Making college more affordable for student veterans is one way we can show appreciation to the men and women who loyally serve our nation.”

The proposed law would apply to veterans attending college through the Pre-9/11 G.I. Bill. Last year, Illinois allowed veterans using the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill to qualify for instate tuition. Bertino-Tarrant’s legislation simply makes sure all veterans utilizing a G.I. Bill program qualify for instate tuition.

HB3692 would take effect during the 2015-2016 academic year.

Since being signed into law by President Roosevelt in 1944, the G.I. Bill has helped millions of veterans pay for college and readjust to civilian life after completing military service.

supcourt pens mr SHOREWOOD— State Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood) issued the following statement following the Illinois Supreme Court’s pension ruling:

“The court ruling backs my support of the men and women who have earned their retirement. We now have to go back to the bargaining table and respect the Supreme Court's ruling.”

silver searchSPRINGFIELD— Last year, in Georgia, an elderly man suffering from Alzheimer’s slipped away from his home in the middle of the night and wandered into a nearby neighborhood in the cold only to be shot dead when mistaken for an intruder.

And this year in Texas, an elderly man suffering from Alzheimer’s wandered away from his family’s home in the middle of the night in the midst of freezing temperatures. He was later found dead.

These are the tragic stories state Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood) is hoping to prevent through legislation she helped pass out of the Illinois Senate yesterday. Her plan would allow law enforcement, Department on Aging and local law enforcement agencies to create a statewide awareness program to help locate individuals with Alzheimer’s and other cognitive diseases who go missing.

“It is imperative that Illinois has a coordinated plan for locating individuals with Alzheimer’s,” said Bertino-Tarrant. “We have an obligation to get individuals with Alzheimer’s who wander back home safely.”

The Illinois Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association estimates more than 200,000 Illinois residents have Alzheimer’s disease or related dementias. Nearly one-third of those will likely wander off and the state currently doesn’t have an adequate system to alert the public.

Bertino-Tarrant discussed the need for a coordinated plan earlier this year during a meeting with the Alzheimer Association’s Illinois chapter in Springfield.

“I look forward to working with the Illinois House to bring this system to Illinois,” Bertino-Tarrant said.

senatefloorSPRINGFIELD— State Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood) passed legislation today that would require the Illinois Senate to approve the State Superintendent of Education.

The State Superintendent of Education is the chief education officer in the state and serves as the State Board of Education’s chief executive officer.

Though members of the State Board of Education have to be confirmed by the Senate, the State Superintendent of Education does not have to be confirmed.

Bertino-Tarrant wants that to change.

“My legislation is about transparency and accountability,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “A Senate confirmation process would give the Senate an opportunity to learn about the qualifications, experience and philosophy of the state official making the day-to-day decisions about our local schools.”

Senate Bill 1505 now moves to the Illinois House.



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