With the new year comes the implementation of over 180 new laws that go into effect January 1st.


The Safety, Accountability, Fairness, and Equity-Today Act, was passed by the Illinois Senate and House of Representatives in the early hours of Jan. 13, 2021. Several provisions including those related to pretrial detention. Required use of law enforcement body cameras goes into effect January 1st. There is a legal decision impacting the full statewide implementation to the provision that eliminates cash bail. That component will likely be taken up by higher courts in the near future.

Constitutional Amendment 1

The passage of the “Worker’s Rights Amendment” makes it a constitutional right to collectively bargain or join a union in Illinois. It would also stop any laws from being able to change or restrict the process of joining a union.

Trauma Informed School Boards

School board members will be required to take training on “trauma-informed practices,” including “the prevalence of trauma among students, including the prevalence of trauma among student populations,” and “the effects of implicit or explicit bias on recognizing trauma among various students in connection with race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation.”

Minimum Wage

The new year will bring an increase in wages to some Illinoisans in minimum wage positions. The minimum wage will increase to $13 on Jan. 1, a $1 increase from the current minimum wage. The increase is the result of a law in January of 2019 which will raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour by Jan. 1, 2025.

The new wage does not apply to all workers in minimum wage positions as those who receive tips will have their base pay increased to $7.80 an hour and those younger than 18 who work less than 650 hours a year will see an increase to $10.50.

Motor Fuel Taxes

Illinois lawmakers previously authorized a six-month delay in the increase to motor fuel taxes due to rising inflation. On Jan. 1 the freeze is over and the motor fuel tax will increase by 3.1 cents per gallon and increase again on July 1, 2023.

Auto Theft Liability

If a person’s car is stolen, they will not be liable for violations, fees, fines or penalties when caught on red light or speed cameras.

Opiod Suppressant Costs

Medicaid and insurers are prohibited from imposing a copayment for naloxone hydrochloride — which is an opioid suppressant.

Vehicle Registration Fees

A new law reduces the vehicle registration fee for senior citizens from $24 to $10. Another law reduces the vehicle registration fees for cars and small trucks if it was manufactured in Illinois.

Substitute Teacher Shortage

In response to the shortage of substitute teachers in Illinois, a bill was passed in April allowing students enrolled in approved teacher training programs who have earned at least 90 credit hours to obtain a substitute teaching license. Previously applicants had to hold a bachelor’s degree or higher from an accredited institution to receive a substitute teachers license

Safe2Help” Hotline for Students, School Staff

This law requires the state of Illinois to create a “Safe2Help” hotline where students, school staff and other members of the public can confidentially report information regarding “potential self-harm and criminal acts directed at students” and school employees. Illinois State Police is responsible for oversight and operation of the hotline, and that it must be operational and available 24-hours-a-day, 365 days a year.

Additional New Laws

The listing of all new laws can be found here.

Lame Duck Session in Early January

The legislature will reconvene in early January prior to the inauguration of the new General Assembly. Departing lawmakers don’t have to worry about reelection when considering whether or not support certain bills.

Among the issues expected to be discussed is a proposed ban on the sale or possession of assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines. Calls for it to be banned in Illinois grew louder after a mass shooting at an Independence Day parade in Highland Park last summer that left seven dead and dozens more injured.

Upcoming Dates

January 4-7, 2023    “Lame Duck” Session

January 11, 2023     Inauguration for General Assembly

February 15, 2023   State of the State/Budget

New Year and New Members of the General Assembly

The New Year brings new faces to the General Assembly. Below is a list of new members that will be sworn in on January 11th.

In addition, Senator Jason Barickman has announced his resignation from the Senate (R) new District 53. Representative Tim Butler has also resigned since the general election to become the Illinois Railroad Association’s executive director beginning January 2023.

Legislative Division for the 103rd General Assembly

Senate Democrats        41                 House Democrats     73
Senate Republicans     18                  House Republicans  45
Total                              59                  Total                        118

New members in the House of Representatives:

Lilian Jimenez (D) District 4
Hoan Huynh (D) District 13
Kevin Olickal (D) District 16
Abdelnasser Rashid (D) District 21
Jenn Ladisch Douglass (D) District 45
Diane Blair-Sherlock (D) District 46
Jennifer Sanalitro (R) District 48
Nabeela Syed (D) District 51
Mary Beth Canty (D) District 54
Laura Dias (D) District 62
Gregg Johnson (D) District 72
Brad Fritts (R) District 74
Norma Hernandez (D) District 77
Matt Hanson (D) District 83
John M. Cabello (R) District 90 (returning legislator)
Sharon Chung (D) District 91
Travis Weaver (R) District 93
Harry Benton (D) District 97
Dennis Tipsword Jr. (R) District 105
Wayne Rosenthal (R) District 108 (returning legislator)
Kevin Schmidt (R) District 114

New Senators:

Javier Loera Cervantes (D) District 1
Mike Porfirio (D) District 11
Willie Preston (D) District 16
Seth Lewis (R) District 24 (previously a representative)
Mary Edly-Allen (D) District 31 (returning legislator)
Michael Halpin (D) District 36 (previously a representative)
Rachel Ventura (D) District 43
Andrew Chesney (R) District 45 (previously a representative)
Erica Harriss (R) District 56

We Mourn the Loss of Senator Scott Bennett

Text Box: State Senator Scott Bennett of Champaign died unexpectedly earlier in December from an undiagnosed brain tumor. The 45 year-old lawmaker was an attorney and former prosecutor. He had served in the Illinois Senate since 2015.  
He was universally liked and respected by all in the capitol. He brought a unique blend of intelligence and humor to his approach at effective governance. He is survived by his wife and two young children.  Senator Bennett will be truly missed. His wife, Dr. Stacy Bennett, was sworn in to finish the remainder of the term.




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