Calling it a “big deal” for boosting Illinois’ economy and encouraging job creators to come to Illinois, State Sen. Sue Rezin joined the Illinois Chamber of Commerce, Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, the Illinois Environmental Council, and other state lawmakers in Springfield Aug. 25, as Governor Bruce Rauner signed Senate Bill 1672 into law.
“This legislation is a perfect example of good bi-partisan cooperation and compromise that will help our business climate and boost Illinois’ economy,” Rezin said. “Our manufacturers are often times living and dying with the current permitting process, because they don’t know when they will get an answer to their application. This new law changes that in a positive way. It’s great news for Illinois and great news for my district, as the Energy and Chemical Corridor of America.”
Under this legislation sponsored by Rezin in the Senate, Illinois companies seeking an air permit will be able to get it directly from the state, instead of going through the federal government. Rezin said all too often in the past the federal government took so long to respond that it left job creators not only frustrated, but put Illinois at a disadvantage when trying to recruit businesses to the state.
“This legislation will now give these companies certainty in the permitting process, because within one year they will have an answer to their permit application from the state,” Rezin said. “That will go a long way in helping our manufacturers create jobs and boost our economy.”
“We need good examples in Springfield these days of setting aside partisan differences and working cooperatively for solutions,” State Rep. Elaine Nekritz (D-Northbrook) said. “Senate Bill 1672 fits that model perfectly. I appreciate the hard work of Sen. Rezin to bring together these business and environmental groups with strong differences in their positions and to find a compromise that will provide environmental protections in our workplaces without hurting businesses. I thank the governor for making this smart policy approach a new state law.”
“Senate Bill 1672 is one of the very few pro-growth business reforms passed by the General Assembly this year, and the most substantial environmental policy change in Illinois in more than a decade,” Todd Maisch, President of the Illinois Chamber of Commerce said. “The ability to receive an air permit is a ‘go/no go’ factor for new plant construction or major expansions of existing facilities, making the permitting process a vital economic development issue. Senate Bill 1672 puts Illinois on a level playing field to compete for new businesses and vital business expansions.”
Forty-one other states, including all of Illinois’ surrounding states, have state-run Prevention of Significant Deterioration permitting programs.
This legislation is a compromise between the Attorney General’s Office, Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, Sierra Club/Illinois Environmental Council, and the Illinois Chamber of Commerce.