February 11, 2016
Dear Constituent of the 38th Senate District,
I hope you had a great week and are staying warm. After
a few warmer than usual days recently, the deep freeze has returned!
First, if you could please add this email to your list
of contacts because in the next two weeks, we are making changes to
my weekly e-newsletter, and I want to make sure you continue to
receive it. Thanks! Senator.Sue.Rezin@Rezin.illinoissenaterepublicans.com
This week, I want to remind you (and please tell your
friends), my office is available to help anyone living in the 38th
District apply for a concealed carry license. I know sometimes the
process can be confusing or maybe you don’t have the ability to take
a picture of yourself. That’s where my office can help!
To date, my office has helped nearly 300 people apply
for a concealed carry license. Our program of helping people has been
a huge success.
What you need to know:
– Applicants must
schedule the free appointment with my office (no walk-ins, please).
– The application
process takes 30 minutes.
– Applicants must
bring the Certificate of Training (must be signed by the trainer and
applicant), driver’s license, and FOID card (the address on the
driver’s license and FOID card must be the same).
– The application
fee is $150 (payment accepted with credit card or electronic check
– 10 years of
residency must be established. (If the applicant has lived at their
current address for 10 years, they will need to know the month and
year to present. If they have had multiple residences within the last
10 years, they will need to bring in a list of those addresses and
the duration as previously listed.)
– Applicants must
bring a current photo or a photo will be taken in my office
To schedule an appointment, call my office at (815)
I hope you have a great weekend!
State Senator Sue Rezin
President visits Springfield
On Wednesday this week, President Obama visted
Springfield, addressing the General Assembly. It was an experience I
will never forget!
Floodplain/Flood Insurance Tips
I know many of you couldn’t attend our Flood Prevention
Town Hall Forum in Morris last week, but have questions regarding
issues related to the floodplain map and flood insurance such as:
– If you live in a
designated floodplain and you believe your property should be removed
from the floodplain, how you can potentially get your property out of
the floodplain map
– If you are in a
designated floodplain, how you can reduce your flood insurance rates
– If you are
interested in flood insurance, where you can turn to
Please check out this video, which will answer many of
your questions: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LNy8YBshMHE
Senate Week in Review: February 8 – 12, 2016
Springfield, Ill.—On Feb. 10, the Illinois General
Assembly welcomed the fourth president in Illinois history—and former
Illinois State Senator—President Barack Obama, to speak to Illinois
lawmakers about the need for bipartisanship and reforms to the
In his hour long speech, President Obama called not only
for Republicans and Democrats to work together to solve our state’s
problems, but also stressed the need for major reforms, including
redistricting reform. Redistricting reform is an initiative proposed
by Gov. Bruce Rauner and long-supported by Republicans, said State
Sen. Sue Rezin.
Also this week, school districts across the state will
be closely watching Senate President John Cullerton’s next move,
after a recent interview where he said, “no schools should be funded
until Chicago schools are funded fairly.” Republicans fear that
legislative Democrats plan to hold hostage funding for downstate and
suburban schools in an attempt to bail-out Chicago Public Schools
with nearly $500 million in additional funding. Chicago already
receives more than its fair share from the state funding formula.
However, there was good news from the Department of
Natural Resources Director this week that the Illinois State Museum
may reopen in a few weeks if lawmakers approve changes to funding.
Also, many lawmakers will “Go Red for Heart Month” in February,
supporting efforts to raise awareness about detection and prevention
of heart disease by wearing red on Feb. 17 at the Capitol.
President emphasizes need for redistricting reform,
Nine years to the day he announced his candidacy for
President, Barack Obama returned to the Illinois Statehouse where he
served three terms as a State Senator. On Feb. 10, President Obama
became the fourth sitting president to address a joint session of the
Illinois General Assembly, emphasizing the need for bipartisanship
During his speech, the President dedicated a number of
his remarks to underscoring the need for changing the state’s method
of drawing legislative districts. Senate Republican lawmakers
applauded the President’s call for redistricting reform, having spent
years introducing proposals to change Illinois’ current process that
allows elected officials to draw the state’s legislative and
Republicans have long underscored a point the President
made during his Wednesday address, when he declared that, “American
politicians should not pick their voters, voters should pick their
Occasionally joking about his time as a former State
Senator, and reminiscing about memorable moments with colleagues from
both political parties, the President stressed the need for
compromise and encouraged Illinois’ leaders to set rancor and bipartisanship
aside to accomplish good things for the people of Illinois.
Citing diversity as one of Illinois’ best attributes,
President Obama called Illinois the “microcosm of America, where
Republicans, Democrats, Independents and good people of every faith
and ethnicity share certain bedrock values.” He called on the
Illinois General Assembly to listen to all of these diverse voices to
help “bridge differences” and find common ground on the state’s most
Republican lawmakers and the Governor have consistently
expressed their willingness to compromise on a budget and reforms in
order to end the state’s current budget impasse. To date, the state’s
legislative Democrats have refused to come to the negotiating table
on any reforms—including redistricting reform.
Legislative Republicans said they are hopeful that the
President’s message of bipartisan cooperation and compromise will
resonate as lawmakers work together address the significant
challenges Illinois faces.
School districts statewide waiting for Senate
President’s next move
School districts across the state will be nervously
watching Senate President John Cullerton’s next move after he told
WBEZ this week, “I don’t think any school should be funded until
Chicago schools are funded fairly.”
Republicans fear legislative Democrats plan to hold
hostage funding for downstate and suburban schools in an attempt to
bail-out Chicago Public Schools with nearly $500 million in
President Cullerton has proposed a state bailout of
Chicago Public Schools, which are facing a $480 million budget
shortfall. Senate GOP lawmakers have stressed that they will not
bridge the gap for the ailing school system at the expense of
downstate and suburban communities.
Senate GOP legislators pointed out that Chicago schools
already benefit from sweetheart deals that suburban and downstate
schools don’t receive.
A recent report from the Illinois State Board of
Education (ISBE) confirmed serious inequities exist in the state’s
system of education funding, which Senate Republicans first
highlighted in a 2013 report. According to ISBE, during the 2014-2015
school year, Chicago Public Schools received $256 million more from a
special block grant than they would have if they were treated like
every other school district in the state.
According to the report, “CPS received $474,870,400 from
FY 15 and FY 16 appropriations….CPS would have received $219,301,959
had the district been reimbursed in the same manner as other
When looking at Chicago Public Schools enrollment
numbers, despite only serving about 19 percent of the state’s student
population, CPS receives approximately 36 percent of the combined
statewide appropriations for special education; free lunch and
breakfast programs; low-income students; early childhood education;
and through a windfall from the Corporate Personal Property
Replacement Tax and the PTELL adjustment.
In the 2015-2016 school year, Chicago Public Schools’
overall funding for these six grant lines provides $565 million more
than CPS would receive if funding was consistent with student
How many American Presidents have addressed the IL
President Barack Obama addressed the Illinois General
Assembly on Wednesday, Feb. 10. According to a
report from the Chicago Sun-Times, Obama was the fourth president
to address a joint session of the Illinois legislature.
While a number of sitting American presidents have
visited Springfield and the Illinois State Capitol Building, only
four have given addresses to joint sessions of the legislature.
The last president to speak in front of the General
Assembly was Jimmy Carter in May of 1978. Herbert Hoover spoke in
June of 1931, and William Howard Taft addressed Illinois legislators
in February of 1911.
Among the presidents who visited the Capitol, but who
did not address the legislature was Martin Van Buren, who took a tour
of the building on a day in June of 1842 that the legislature was not
in session. Ronald Reagan spoke at a political rally just days before
the presidential election of 1984. George H.W. Bush also spoke in the
Capitol rotunda while he was in office.
Several presidents have also visited Springfield, but
not made it to the Capitol building. In 1903, Teddy Roosevelt spoke
in front of the Lincoln Home after dedicating Millikin University in
Decatur during a cross-country tour. George W. Bush visited Springfield
in April of 2005 to dedicate one of Springfield’s top tourist
destinations, the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum.
If lawmakers approve changes, Illinois State Museum
could reopen soon
After closing in October, the Illinois State Museum may
reopen in just a few weeks if changes to how the museum is funded are
approved by lawmakers.
In an effort to decrease the museum’s reliance on tax
funds, Gov. Bruce Rauner proposed increasing admission fees and
private fundraising to sustain operations.
The Illinois Department of Natural Resources (DNR)
Director Wayne Rosenthal, announced on Feb. 8 that with the General
Assembly’s approval of the Governor’s proposals they will be ready to
increase fundraising efforts and implement fees immediately.
The timeline to reopen the museum’s doors is dependent
on how quickly legislators can pass the Governor’s proposed changes.
But, DNR Director Rosenthal does warn that if lawmakers reject
changes that it could take more time for the museum to reopen.
Illinois Senate Republicans Go Red in February
Heart Disease is the leading cause of death in the
United States. One of every four deaths can be attributed to this
deadly disease. But, it is 80% preventable. During the month of
February, Illinois Senate Republicans want to raise awareness about
ways to prevent heart disease in recognition of National Heart Month.
While heart disease certainly affects both men and
women, the risk factors are much higher in women between the ages of
18-55 than for men. Heart disease and stroke cause 1 in 3 deaths
among women each year – more than all cancers combined. Fortunately,
80 percent of cardiac and stroke events may be prevented with
education and action.
In an effort to bring to light the risks and impact that
heart disease has in the lives of women everywhere, Illinois Senate
Republicans will be joining members of the Conference of Women
Legislators (COWL) and Illinois health officials in wearing red for
the annual Go Red Day at the Illinois State Capitol on Feb. 17. The
goal of the event is to spread awareness of heart disease in women,
and to encourage them to schedule a Well-Woman Visit with their
doctor to get a full overview of their heart health.
The American Heart Association provides five key ways
you can GO REDthis
Get Your Numbers:
Ask your doctor to check your blood pressure, cholesterol and
Own Your Lifestyle:
Stop smoking, lose weight, be physically active and eat healthy.
Raise Your Voice:
Advocate for more women-related research and education.
Educate Your Family:
Make healthy food choices for you & your family. Teach your kids
the importance of staying active.
Show your support with a donation of time or money.
Also, a full schedule of activities planned for Heart
Month across the state can be found here.
About Go Red for Women Movement
Go Red For Women is the American Heart Association’s
national movement to end heart disease and stroke in women because
it’s not just a man’s disease. In fact, more women than men die every
year from heart disease and stroke. The good news is that 80 percent
of cardiac events can be prevented with education and lifestyle
changes. Go Red For Women advocates for more research and swifter
action for women’s heart health. The American Heart Association’s Go
Red For Women movement is nationally sponsored by Macy’s, with additional
support from our cause supporters. For more information, please visit
GoRedForWomen.org or call 1-888-MY-HEART (1-888-694-3278).
College students encouraged to apply for financial aid
Despite the ongoing budget impasse, Illinois college
students are still being encouraged to apply for financial aid to
ensure their eligibility for assistance once a state budget is in
Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC) Director
Eric Zarnikow warns students they should not assume grants won’t be available,
because they may miss out on an opportunity to receive assistance.
ISAC is encouraging students to complete the Free
Application for Federal Student Aid (FASFA). The form determines if a
student is eligible for most financial aid programs, including
Illinois’ Monetary Award Program, or MAP grants.
The FASFA form can be found on the ISAC website: http://www.isac.org/home/fafsa/