With the arrival of the new year comes a series of new laws enacted by the State of Illinois. This year, over 200 new laws will take effect on January 1. These include bills for small technical corrections as well as major pieces of legislation. Click here to read a summary of these new laws which will be on the books next year. For more information on all the bills in the General Assembly, visit www.ilga.gov.
With the year-long Bicentennial celebration underway, let’s find out just how much you know about Illinois’ history. Take this quiz and learn how much you know about Illinois' past. Click here to start the quiz.
State Representative Peter Breen (R-Lombard) is partnering with One Light Self-Defense to bring a self-defense and self-awareness class to women in the 48th District on January 11.

The free class will be held at Park View Elementary School, 250 S. Park Boulevard, in Glen Ellyn from 6:00 pm until 9:00 pm. Adult women are invited to bring their teenage daughters with them. Due to the interactive nature of the class, participants should wear comfortable clothes and shoes. Bottles of water will be provided.

“Those who attend this class will learn valuable techniques about where to hit an attacker, how to release a hold, and methods to improve awareness and avoid potential attacks,” said Breen. “My hope is that everyone will leave the class with a better understanding of how to protect themselves during potentially dangerous situations.”

While the class is free, donations will be taken at the door to benefit Family Shelter Service of Wheaton, a local organization supporting women and children fleeing domestic violence situations.

Those who wish to attend the class are asked to RSVP no later than Friday, January 5 by calling the Breen office at (630) 403-8135 or by using the contact form found at reppeterbreen.org.
With the holiday season in full swing, there are many opportunities for families to gather at festivals and events throughout the 48th District. To help you navigate the many offerings in this area, I have compiled a list of community events that are taking place throughout the remainder of December. Each listing includes a hyperlink to take you to a web site for additional information. May you and yours experience the richest blessings of peace and joy during this holy time!

Glen Ellyn
Glen Art Theater – Free Holiday Movies: Saturday, December 9, 16 and 23 at 10:30 am, seats are limited and are available on a first come, first served basis, Glen Art Theater, 540 Crescent Blvd., Glen Ellyn

Visit Santa And Live Reindeer at the Glen Ellyn Fire Station: Saturday, December 9 from 1:00 pm until 3:00 pm, Santa and his reindeer will be at the Glen Ellyn Firehouse Dec. 9 for a meet-and-greet and photos, 524 Pennsylvania Avenue, Glen Ellyn

The Nutcracker Ballet: Saturday, December 16 at 2:00 pm and 7:00 pm, and Sunday, December 17 at 1:00 pm and 5:00 pm, meet Santa in the Lobby before the show, McAninch Arts Center, Belushi Performance Hall, 425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn

New Year’s Eve Spectacular: the New Philharmonic Orchestra performs at the McAninch Arts Center, 425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn, Sunday, December 31 at 2:30 pm, 5:30 pm and 9:00 pm

Lisle
Tree Lights at the Morton Arboretum: Friday, November 17 through Monday, January 1

Candy Cane Hunt, Cookies with Mrs. Claus: Saturday, December 9 at 10:00 am, Community Park Bandshell - 1825 Short Street, Lisle

Lombard
Holiday Lights in Lilacia Park: View the holiday lights and enjoy variety of activities, including:
  • Friday, December 8 from 6:00-8:00 pm, free visits with Santa and train rides, make holiday crafts
  • Saturday, December 9 from 6:00-8:00 pm, free visits with Santa and train rides, meet Rudolph and receive your very own Rudolph nose
  • Sunday, December 10 from 6:00-8:00 pm, free visits with Santa and train rides
  • Friday, December 15 from 6:00-8:00 pm, free visits with Santa and train rides, make a Victorian craft 
  • Saturday, December 16 from 6:00-8:00 pm, free visits with Santa and train rides, Polar Express Night in Lilacia Park, every participant will receive their very own bell
  • Sunday, December 17 from 6:00-8:00 pm, free visits with Santa and train rides
Living Nativity and Dinner: Sunday, December 10, 5:00 pm until 7:00 pm, First United Methodist Church, 155 S Main Street, Lombard

The Story of Holly and Ivy at Montini Catholic High School: Saturday, December 16 at 2:00 pm and 7:00 pm and Sunday, December 17 at 2:00 pm, Montini Catholic High School, 19W070 16th St, Lombard

Oakbrook Terrace
Drury Lane Theatre: Several opportunities to see productions of A Christmas Carol and 42nd Street

Wheaton
McCormick House at Cantigny Park Community Trees Display: November 17 through December 30 from 10:00 am until 3:30 pm, Cantigny Park, 1S151 Winfield Road, Wheaton

Holiday Carriage Rides: Saturday, December 9 from 12:00 noon until 3:00 pm at Martin Memorial Plaza, 134 W. Front Street, Wheaton

Visits with Santa: Saturday, December 9, 16, and 23 from 12:00 noon until 3:00 pm at Martin Memorial Plaza, 134 W Front Street, Wheaton

Brunch with Santa: December 23, seatings are at 10:00 am and 12:30 pm and highlights include a photo with Santa, balloon artist and face painters, Cantigny Park, 151 Winfield Road, Wheaton

Christmas Art Walk – A Gift to Remember: December 12 through 24, families are invited to explore, discover and walk through 12 stores downtown following a map through the city of Wheaton on a Christmas Art Walk

Cosley Zoo Festival of Lights and Tree Sales: Now through December 30 from 9:00 am until 9:00 pm daily, lights come on at 3:00 pm at Cosley Zoo, 1356 N. Gary Avenue in Wheaton

For the second time in a week, State Representative Peter Breen’s voting record has earned him a perfect rating by watchdog groups who follow legislation in Springfield and rank lawmakers according to their efforts to protect taxpayers and improve the Illinois economy.

On the heels of being named a “Taxpayer Friend” for earning a 100% score on the Illinois Tax Survey compiled by Taxpayers United of America, Breen was recognized on December 1 by the Illinois Technology and Manufacturing Association (TMA) for earning a 100% score for his support of manufacturing in Illinois. Breen was one of only 18 Illinois lawmakers to receive at 100% score with TMA.

“A thriving manufacturing industry is critical to improving the Illinois economy,” said Breen. “It’s an honor to be recognized for my work to help these job creators, by improving our manufacturing climate and reducing burdens placed on them.”

TMA President Steven Rauschenberger applauded Breen for being a champion for the manufacturing industry, and said, “Peter Breen continues to be a legislative leader who understands the importance of quality, high paying jobs in Illinois. His consistent voting record helps protect jobs in Illinois from unnecessary regulatory interference.”

The Technology and Manufacturing Association assists Illinois’ $100 billion manufacturing sector through advice, education, and other programs and also advocates for legislation to help the industry succeed in Illinois. Click here to view a list of the legislation included on the scorecard and a full ranking of every Illinois State Representative and Senator.
State Representative Peter Breen (R-Lombard) has earned a perfect score on the non-partisan Illinois Tax Survey compiled by Taxpayers United of America. His score is based on votes taken during the 99th General Assembly which involve the taxes Illinoisans pay to support state government.

“It’s an honor to be recognized as a ‘Taxpayer Friend’ for my work on behalf of the people of the 48th District,” said Breen. “As majority Democrats continue to push their tax and spend agenda, I will fight even harder against their attempts to take more money from the pockets of folks in DuPage County.”

While 32 members of the Illinois House were recognized with a “passing” score of 70% or above, Breen is one of only three lawmakers in the entire General Assembly who earned a perfect score of 100%.

“As a lawmaker, I focus my advocacy for my constituents in three primary areas: reducing the burden of unnecessary taxes, fees and regulations; exposing and opposing the special interest deals that have corrupted our state government; and improving our business climate to create economic opportunity,” Breen said. “Now, as the House Republican Floor Leader and lead debater on all bills, I have an even greater ability to advance the interests of our District, vocally opposing the repeated attempts by Speaker Mike Madigan and his Democrats continue raising taxes on Illinois families.”

For the Taxpayers United tax survey, lawmakers were scored on their votes on ten different bills, on issues ranging from new pension sweeteners for public employees to new unfunded spending programs.

“When we return to Springfield in January for the 2018 regular session, I will continue to stand up for taxpayers in our District, because too many of our friends and neighbors have already had to move due to the tax burdens and poor economic policy imposed by our state government,” said Breen.
This Tuesday, November 28 is Giving Tuesday, a global day of giving to worthwhile charitable organizations across the state, nation and globe. Celebrated annually on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving, Giving Tuesday is a coordinated event that promotes the act of charitable giving during the holidays. Whether you like to donate to large organizations or prefer to channel your donation dollars locally, Giving Tuesday allows us all an opportunity to participate in holiday and end-of-the-year giving. 

Click here to be directed to a database of local organizations and non-profits.
Fall Veto Session Concludes with Action Taken on Several Vetoed House and Senate Bills
Lawmakers were in Springfield last week for the final days of the 2017 fall veto session. Of the vetoes issued by the Governor during the spring legislative session, a significant number were overridden. I supported a number of the overrides, including the creation of the “Debt Transparency Act.” However, I opposed those overrides that would increase red tape on businesses and hurt our state’s economy. 

Legislators will spend the next few months in their home districts tending to the needs of local constituents. Members of the House of Representatives report back to Springfield on January 24, and Senators will return on January 30 for the 2018 regular session.

“Support Our Troops” Collection Underway in 48th District
There’s still time to make the holidays brighter for U.S. military members serving overseas, by donating items to my “Support Our Troops” drive. We are partnering with the Ladies Auxiliary to the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the local Lilac Post 5815 for this third annual drive, and items collected through November 30 will be delivered to military personnel serving overseas near or before Christmas. We have had good participation so far, but I’m hopeful we will be passing along many more boxes of gifts and supplies when the collection drive is completed at the end of the month. 

People from the 48th House District or the 24th Senate District (Sen. Chris Nybo’s district) may drop off their donations at our shared legislative office at 929 S. Main Street, Suite 105A in Lombard. Donations will be accepted through November 30 during normal business hours of 9:00 AM until 3:30 PM, Monday through Friday.

As we have done in the past, we would also like to send care packages specifically to local soldiers from our district. Friends and family with loved ones from the area who are currently serving in the military are encouraged to contact our office with their names and addresses.

Recommended items to be included in the care packages include:
  • Books, magazines, crossword and word search puzzles, coloring books, colored pencils, dominoes, checkers or chess games
  • iTunes Gift Cards, headphones/ear buds, DVD movies or television shows, small video games, international calling cards 
  • Baby wipes, deodorant, Kleenex, lotion, toothpaste/toothbrush, shampoo, soap, female hygiene items, shaving cream, razors 
  • Beef jerky, powdered drink mix, coffee, granola or protein bars, trail mix, dry snacks, mixed nuts 
  • Laundry detergent, fabric softener, dryer sheets, air fresheners 
  • Footballs, basketballs, soccer balls and frisbees 
Because the items will be mailed, aerosol cans/containers, food items that could melt or spoil and fragile items cannot be accepted.

Our troops overseas are very deserving of care packages that let them know that folks back home are thinking of them and appreciate their service and sacrifice. For more information about the collection drive, or to leave contact information for a specific member of the service, please call my office at (630) 403-8135.

General Assembly Sends Comprehensive Sexual Harassment Prevention Legislation to Governor
Members of the House and Senate approved a comprehensive piece of legislation last week that seeks to address the culture of sexual harassment in Springfield. SB 402 includes a mandate for annual sexual harassment training sessions for State Constitutional offices, state employees, lawmakers and lobbyists. The bill also includes a provision brought forward by House Republican Leader Jim Durkin, which would create a telephone hotline for persons seeking relief in cases of sexual harassment. Examples of help that the hotline could provide include assistance in filing a sexual harassment complaint, referral of a victim to counseling, or referral of a victim to protective services. House members received their training on November 8 and Senators received their training on November 9.

SB 402 was part of a package of sexual harassment reforms passed in the wake of allegations of misconduct at the Capitol. Other bills that seek to change the culture in Springfield include HJR 83, a resolution that condemns the culture of sexual harassment and calls on all lawmakers to work together to change the culture, and HR 687, which creates a task force on sexual discrimination and harassment. I voted in favor of all three items.

Legislative Inspector General Appointed
The Legislative Ethics Commission, a bipartisan working group within the Illinois General Assembly, has appointed Julie Porter as a special legislative inspector general. A former federal prosecutor in Chicago, Porter will play a key role in the General Assembly’s internal disciplinary process for members and staff. The appointment came in the wake of a nationwide inquiry into sexual harassment in American workplaces.

Reports of sexual harassment can be made on a confidential basis to the Legislative Ethics Commission. With approval of the Commission, the special legislative inspector general (LIG) will examine the reports. If a complaint appears to be valid, the LIG may conduct further inquiries, and may initiate a remediation process. In some situations, the remediation process may require a referral of a specific report and case to law enforcement.

Mark You Calendar for Jan. 11 Women’s Self Defense & Self Awareness Class in 48th District
On January 11, 2018, I will be sponsoring a free Women’s Self Defense & Self Awareness Class for adult women in the 48th House District. Teenage daughters will be able to accompany their mothers to this event. My staff and I are finalizing the location, but this will be a 6:00 PM until 9:00 PM interactive class, where participants will learn valuable techniques about where to hit an attacker, how to release a hold, and methods to improve awareness and avoid potential attacks. My hope is that those who attend will leave with a better understanding of how to protect themselves during potentially dangerous situations. Additional information about the event will be posted to my web site at reppeterbreen.org

Bicentennial Campaign will Honor 200 Illinois Veterans
State officials have announced the launch of HONOR 200, a signature program of the Illinois Bicentennial Celebration, honoring the work of 200 veterans whose contributions are above and beyond the call of duty.

The Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs will work with veteran's organizations throughout the state to promote HONOR 200 and solicit nominations for those who will be recognized as part of the program. Nominees will be evaluated on their achievements and on the extent to which their contributions have aided, benefited and provided inspiration to their community. Anyone can nominate an Illinois Veteran. Written nominations can be sent to the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs, 69 W. Washington Street, Chicago, IL 60601 or on-line at www.illinois.gov/veterans.

The Official Illinois Bicentennial Celebration will begin this December 3rd, 2017 with events in Springfield and Chicago. The celebration will continue with programs and events throughout 2018, ending with the Bicentennial Birthday Party on December 3rd, 2018 at the United Center. The HONOR 200 veterans will be recognized during the Birthday Gala. For information on the Bicentennial and to find out how your community can participate go to www.illinois200.gov.
There’s still time to make the holidays brighter for U.S. military serving overseas by donating items to a “Support Our Troops” collection being sponsored by State Senator Chris Nybo (R-Elmhurst) and State Representative Peter Breen (R-Lombard).

The lawmakers are partnering with the Ladies Auxiliary to the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the local Lilac Post 5815 for their third annual “Support Our Troops” collection drive. Items collected through November 30 will be delivered to military personnel serving overseas near or before Christmas.

“We have had good participation so far, but I’m hopeful we will be passing along many more boxes of gifts and supplies when the collection drive is completed at the end of the month,” said Breen. “Our troops overseas are very deserving of care packages that let them know that folks back home are thinking of them and appreciate their service and sacrifice.”

People from the 24th Senate District or the 48th House district may drop off their donations at the Nybo/Breen shared legislative office at 929 S. Main Street, Suite 105A in Lombard. Donations will be accepted through November 30 during normal business hours of 9:00 AM until 3:30 PM, Monday through Friday.

As they have done in the past, Nybo and Breen would also like to send care packages specifically to local soldiers from the 24th Senate District or 48th House District. Friends and family with loved ones from the area who are currently serving in the military are encouraged to contact the Nybo/Breen office with their names and addresses.

Recommended items to be included in the care packages include:
  • Books, magazines, crossword and word search puzzles, coloring books, colored pencils, dominoes, checkers or chess games 
  • iTunes Gift Cards, headphones/ear buds, DVD movies or television shows, small video games, international calling cards 
  • Baby wipes, deodorant, Kleenex, lotion, toothpaste/toothbrush, shampoo, soap, female hygiene items, shaving cream, razors 
  • Beef jerky, powdered drink mix, coffee, granola or protein bars, trail mix, dry snacks, mixed nuts 
  • Laundry detergent, fabric softener, dryer sheets, air fresheners 
  • Footballs, basketballs, soccer balls and frisbees 
Because the items will be mailed, aerosol cans/containers, food items that could melt or spoil and fragile items cannot be accepted.

For more information about the collection drive, or to leave contact information for a specific member of the service, call Sen. Nybo’s office at (630) 969-0990 or Rep. Breen’s office at (630) 403-8135.
Lawmakers return to Springfield this week for the final three days of the fall veto session. In addition to considering some measures that received either a partial or full veto from the Governor during the spring legislative session, some new bills will also be discussed.

During the first week of veto session (Oct. 24-26), members of the House successfully voted to override 11 vetoes, while three additional attempts at overrides failed to garner the 71 required votes. To view the current status of all vetoed bills, click here.

Legislation Filed to Battle Culture of Harassment Against Women in Springfield
Recent national news regarding sexual harassment allegations against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein has ignited a debate over the culture of harassment in Springfield. Several pieces of legislation were filed over the last two weeks in response to an open letter by legislators, lobbyists, and others identifying and condemning a culture of sexual harassment in the Capitol. As a result, members of the General Assembly are moving forward in a bipartisan manner to address the serious problem. A few of the measures would require sexual harassment training for all lawmakers and lobbyists, while another would create a harassment hotline number for victims. I support these efforts and hope they will help change this cultural problem in Springfield. No one should ever have to endure sexual harassment in their workplace, and we need to do everything in our power to increase behavioral standards and make sure all who work in and around the Capitol know that sexual harassment will not be tolerated.

Breen Continues to Push for Hearing on “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act”
When HB 40 was signed into law several weeks ago, it put Illinois taxpayers on the hook to pay for an estimated 20,000 to 30,000 abortions each year. Shortly thereafter, I wrote and filed HB 4114, which would create the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act.” HB 4114 would reverse key provisions of HB 40 by prohibiting units of government from using taxpayer funds for elective abortions. Within hours of my filing of HB 4114, I had a long list of bipartisan co-sponsors. In spite of strong bipartisan support for my bill, Speaker Mike Madigan has buried it in his powerful House Rules Committee.

I continue to push for a fair hearing and vote on my bill. Not only would HB 4114 address significant opposition by pro-life Illinoisans who do not wish to have their tax dollars spent on elective abortions, the bill would put Illinois back in line with longstanding federal statutes on this issue. The legislation is modeled after the federal Hyde Amendment, which prevents federal funding for abortions, other than for procedures sought in connection with pregnancies that result from rape or incest, or that threaten the life of the mother.

Breen Legislation that Helps Protect Illinoisans in Wake of Equifax Data Breach Sails through Illinois House
On September 7 of this year, one of the country’s three main credit agencies, Equifax, announced a cybercrime that exposed 145.5 million U.S. residents to the potential of identity theft. Of those who had their names, social security numbers, birth dates, addresses and other personal pieces of sensitive information compromised, 5.6 million were from Illinois. During the first week of veto session, legislation that helped prevent Illinoisans from becoming victims of identity theft sailed through the Illinois House in a unanimous vote. HB 4095 is a consumer protection bill that would make it easier for people to freeze their credit reports when fraud is suspected. Currently, credit agencies can charge up to $10 each time a consumer freezes their credit report, but HB 4095 would now set that fee at $0, prohibiting credit agencies from charging those who need to freeze their reports. The legislation also requires that consumers be allowed to request a credit freeze by either phone or online communication, not just via certified mail. The bill is now pending in the Senate, where action is expected this week.
On September 7 of this year, one of the country’s three main credit agencies, Equifax, announced a cybercrime that exposed 145.5 million U.S. residents to the potential of identity theft. Of those who had their names, social security numbers, birth dates, addresses and other personal pieces of sensitive information compromised, 5.6 million were from Illinois. On Thursday, legislation that helped prevent Illinoisans from becoming victims of identity theft sailed through the Illinois House in a unanimous vote.

State Representative Peter Breen (R-Lombard), Chief Co-Sponsor of HB 4095, said Illinoisans should have the right to protect themselves when data breaches of this magnitude occur without having to pay fees. “The Equifax breach was massive,” said Breen. “The sheer volume of information that was left exposed could have had devastating consequences for Illinoisans. As lawmakers, it is our duty to make it as easy as possible for our residents to protect themselves from identity fraud.”

In Illinois, credit agencies can currently charge up to $10 each time a consumer freezes their credit report, but HB 4095 would now set that fee at $0, prohibiting credit agencies from charging those who need to freeze their reports. The legislation also requires that consumers be allowed to request a credit freeze by either phone or online communication, not just via certified mail. “As soon as information about the Equifax data breach was made public, a bipartisan group of lawmakers went to work on legislation to help Illinoisans protect themselves,” Breen said. “It was a pleasure to help write this bill and I appreciated the unanimous support it received in the House.”

HB 4095 now moves to the Illinois Senate, where it will be considered when lawmakers return to Springfield on November 7. If approved in the Senate and signed into law, the provisions of the bill would take effect immediately.
Lawmakers are back in Springfield today to begin a six-day veto session that will take place from October 24-26 and November 7-9. It is the time-frame during which bills that received either a partial or full veto by the Governor can be reconsidered. Some new legislation may also be considered.

Back home in the 48th District, State Representative Peter Breen's End of Session Report began arriving in mailboxes this week. The comprehensive report includes a summary of legislative activity in Springfield during the spring 2017 session and during the special summer session. The report also includes information about Breen’s outreach efforts in his home district in DuPage County.

If you did not receive a copy of the Breen 2017 End of Session Report, click here to view a digital version.
The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) is seeking input on the state's rest areas.

To enhance traveler safety and comfort, IDOT maintains a system of 30 rest areas and 11 welcome centers on highways throughout the state, which serve more than 36 million visitors annually. IDOT wants to make sure these service centers are kept clean, safe, and updated with travel-related amenities to enhance the travel experience for Illinois residents and visitors.

Illinois' rest areas and welcome centers are open 24 hours a day and feature restroom facilities, picnic areas, lighted walkways, maps, security cameras, parking for recreational vehicles, and commercial trucks, among other services.

Help shape the future planning of rest areas by completing IDOT's Illinois Rest Area Survey.

For a paper copy of the survey please call 402-399-1405.
Strong majorities of Illinoisans, especially folks in the suburbs and downstate, oppose taxpayer funding of abortions, but with the signing of House Bill 40 at the end of September, Illinoisans will be put on the hook for an estimated 75% of the state’s 40,000 annual elective abortions, a cost of roughly $30 million. I wasn’t going to let that pass without responding, so I drafted legislation that would create the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act.” This new Act would prohibit units of government in Illinois from using taxpayer funds for elective abortions, reversing key provisions of HB 40. My bill is pending as HB 4114.

I modeled the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act after the federal “Hyde Amendment,” named after the late Henry Hyde, who served DuPage County in the U.S. Congress for decades. The Hyde Amendment prevents federal funding for abortions, other than for abortions sought in connection with pregnancies that result from rape or incest, or that threaten the life of the mother. Abortions under these circumstances constitute roughly 1% of all abortions.

While the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act reverses the substantive provisions of HB 40 and prevents taxpayer funding for abortion at all levels of government, it adds new public policy language on abortion, not including controversial 1975 “trigger language” about Roe v. Wade that was at issue in HB 40. That “trigger language” in HB 40 had no legal effect—and there’s no need to reopen a theoretical debate about abortion language from over 40 years ago. Instead, I wanted to start fresh with updated language and concepts that reflect the majority position of Illinoisans, especially folks in the suburbs and downstate, who care very deeply about this issue.

I will be pressing for full debate and a floor vote on HB 4114 during the upcoming fall veto session later this month, before HB 40 goes into effect in 2018.

Breen Chosen to Serve on PANDAS Advisory CouncilThis year I championed legislation that will provide insurance coverage for medically-advised treatments for Pediatric Acute-onset Neuropsychiatric Disorder and Syndrome Associated with Streptococcal Infections (PANDAS/PANS). That bill was signed into law over the summer. Because of my advocacy in that area, I have been appointed to serve on an advisory council that studies PANDAS/PANS and advises the Illinois Department of Public Health on research, diagnosis, treatment and education relating to the disorder and syndrome. I will be serving as part of a combined group of lawmakers, medical professionals and family members with children with PANDAS/PANS to increase public awareness and education of the condition. Since we have families right here in the 48th District who are coping with PANDAS/PANS on a daily basis, I look forward to our work and hope to shine a light of understanding on the impact and treatment of this condition.

As part of our work, the council will issue a report to the General Assembly each year that includes recommendations concerning:
  • Practice guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of the disorder
  • Mechanisms to increase clinical awareness and education among physicians, school-based health centers and providers of mental health services
  • Outreach to educators and parents
  • Development of a network of volunteer experts to assist in education and outreach
This photo was taken at this year’s PANDAS Dash 5K run/walk to support families with PANDAS/PANS. On the left is Kate Drury of Lombard, whose son, Charlie, developed PANDAS/PANS after a case of strep throat at the age of eight. Margie, Matthew, & I were honored to be able to participate in this great event!

Rep. Breen Meets with Small Business Advisory Council
Earlier this month it was a pleasure to speak at a breakfast meeting of the Western Suburbs Chapter of the Small Business Advisory Council about issues in Springfield and how the SBAC could be effective advocates on behalf of small business. We had a lively discussion about how Illinois is considered to be “business unfriendly,” and how I am working through my role as State Representative and House Republican Floor Leader to improve the business climate. Many members shared their concerns and ideas, and I appreciated their feedback and suggestions.

Lombard Senior Fair Draws Large Crowd
Each year I enjoy attending the Village of Lombard’s annual senior fair. I’m shown in this photo with Lombard Village President Keith Giagnorio and Senior of the Year recipients Anna Weselak and Dennis McNicholas. These two volunteers give a great deal of their time and talents in making sure the Lilac Village remains a wonderful place to live, work, and raise a family. Congratulations to them both!
Today, State Representative Peter Breen (R-Lombard) and State Senator Dan McConchie (R-Hawthorn Woods) filed the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act,” which would prohibit units of government in Illinois from using taxpayer funds for elective abortions, reversing key provisions of the recently enacted House Bill 40. Breen and McConchie are pressing for full debate and a floor vote on the measure during the upcoming fall veto session later this month, before HB 40 goes into effect in 2018.

“With the signing of HB 40, Illinoisans will be put on the hook for roughly 75% of the state’s 40,000 annual elective abortions,” said Breen. “Strong majorities of Illinoisans, especially folks in the suburbs and downstate, oppose taxpayer funding of abortions, and the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act will respect both their pocketbooks and their consciences. Considering the average cost of $1,000 per Medicaid abortion, we don’t have the $30 million required to cover 30,000 abortions every year.”

“The No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act is a critical piece of legislation that respects the moral and fiscal concerns of our residents,” said McConchie. “In states that have legalized Medicaid abortions, over 50% of all abortions become taxpayer-funded. The residents in my suburban district are overwhelmingly opposed to this new spending scheme.”

The legislators are relying on data from the Guttmacher Institute, the former research arm of Planned Parenthood, about income levels of those seeking abortions and payment data from other states that provide elective abortion funding. Guttmacher indicates that 75% of women seeking abortions are below 200% Federal Poverty Level, and that, in states with elective abortion, over 50% of all abortions are paid for by Medicaid. See, https://www.guttmacher.org/report/characteristics-us-abortion-patients-2014. Because Illinois’ Medicaid system extends eligibility to pregnant women up to at least 213% Federal Poverty Level, those who will be eligible for taxpayer funded abortions may be even higher than 75%. See, http://www.dhs.state.il.us/page.aspx?item=14091 (pregnant women considered at least family size 2, as Illinois law counts unborn children in family size). The legislators also received information from the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services showing that the average cost, over the past five years, for a Medicaid abortion and ancillary services is approximately $1,000 per procedure.

Breen drafted the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act on the model of the federal Hyde Amendment, which prevents federal funding for abortions, other than for abortions sought in connection with pregnancies that result from rape or incest, or that threaten the life of the mother. Abortions under these circumstances constitute roughly 1% of all abortions. Federal law already requires states to provide Medicaid abortions under these three conditions, and the proposed Act recognizes those federal provisions.

While the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act reverses the substantive provisions of HB 40 and prevents taxpayer funding for abortion at all levels of government, it adds new public policy language on abortion, not including controversial “trigger language” about Roe v. Wade that was at issue in HB 40.

“The ‘trigger language’ in HB 40 had no legal effect, and there’s no need to reopen a theoretical debate about language from over 40 years ago. Instead, we wanted to start fresh with updated language and concepts that reflect the majority position of Illinoisans, especially folks in the suburbs and downstate, who care very deeply about this issue,” Breen added.

“This controversial and culturally divisive act should not be one that taxpayers should be forced to fund,” said McConchie. “Likewise, there is no good reason for taxpayers to be on the hook for someone else’s personal decision.”

Additionally, while the federal government typically matches a state’s Medicaid expenses, it will not do so for elective abortions. Breen has stated previously that, based on the estimated direct cost to the state of $30 million for abortions, the true impact to the Medicaid system is actually double that, $60 million in lost medical services.

Within an hour of the filing of the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act, numerous legislators from across Illinois joined the bill as cosponsors. The bills are pending as HB 4114 & SB 2241. Legislators are also considering legal action in the coming weeks to challenge whether HB 40 can be effective before June 1, 2018, due to it being held beyond the May 31 deadline set by the state constitution for the passage of bills. The current effective date is set at January 1, 2018, and legislators estimate the five-month difference in effective dates could prevent taxpayer funding of 10,000 abortions or more.
After championing legislation this year to provide insurance coverage for medically-advised treatments for Pediatric Acute-onset Neuropsychiatric Disorder and Syndrome Associated with Streptococcal Infections (PANDAS/PANS), State Representative Peter Breen (R-Lombard) has been appointed to serve on an advisory council that studies the disorder and advises the Illinois Department of Public Health on research, diagnosis, treatment and education relating to the disorder and syndrome.

The PANDAS Advisory Council was created in 2015 through Public Act 99-0320 in the 99th General Assembly, and Breen will serve as part of a combined group of lawmakers, medical professionals and family members with children with PANDAS/PANS to increase public awareness and education of the condition. “It’s an honor to be chosen to serve on this important advisory council, especially since we have families right here in the 48th District who are coping with PANDAS/PANS on a daily basis,” said Breen. “I look forward to our work and hope to shine a light of understanding on the impact and treatment of this condition.”

According to Breen, he initially learned about the disorder after meeting Kate Drury of Lombard, whose son, Charlie, developed PANDAS/PANS after a case of strep throat at the age of eight. “In Charlie’s case, after being treated for strep throat, his immune system essentially began to attack his brain, which led to obsessive-compulsive and other harmful behaviors. The family had to pay out-of-pocket for years due to the relative unknown nature of the condition. On the heels of our recent legislation requiring insurance coverage of PANDAS/PANS, my hope is that we can highlight this disease so that other families obtain a diagnosis and begin treatment much sooner.”

As part of their work, the council will issue a report to the General Assembly each year that includes recommendations concerning:
  • Practice guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of the disorder
  • Mechanisms to increase clinical awareness and education among physicians, school-based health centers and providers of mental health services
  • Outreach to educators and parents
  • Development of a network of volunteer experts to assist in education and outreach
“No child should have to suffer through the neurological effects of this syndrome, and I look forward to helping to improve public understanding and treatment options available for those diagnosed with PANDAS/PANS,” Breen said.
Breen Responds to Rauner Authorizing Taxpayer-Funded Abortion on Demand
Last Thursday, Governor Bruce Rauner signed HB 40, highly controversial legislation that provides for taxpayer-funded abortion on demand for Medicaid recipients and state employees. Immediately following the press conference where Rauner pledged to sign the bill, I spoke to the media about a promise Rauner made back in April that he would veto HB 40.

Rauner promised the people of Illinois that he had “no social agenda,” and as such he firmly committed to legislators, the public, and even to Chicago’s Cardinal, Blaise Cupich, that he would veto HB 40 if it reached his desk. But he broke that commitment, signing a bill that puts taxpayers on the hook to pay for an expected 20,000-30,000 aborted lives per year. Furthermore, he signed the bill knowing it lacked a revenue source during a time when the budget was already out-of-balance. The backlash against the Governor was swift and continues to grow.

My opposition to his decision generated a great deal of media coverage in many media outlets, including the Washington Post, the New York Times and on Fox News. Use the links below to access a few of the more local articles and opinion pieces which include portions of my response to the signing of HB 40.

Chicago Sun Times’ Tina Sfondeles

Chicago Tribune’s Kristen McQueary

Chicago Tribune’s John Kass

Rep. Breen to Partner with Senator Nybo and Local Groups for 3rd Annual Drive to Benefit Overseas Troops
I’m pleased to announce that Senator Chris Nybo and I will once again be partnering with the Ladies Auxiliary to the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the local Lilac Post 5815 for a third annual “Support Our Troops” collection drive. Items collected throughout the months of October and November will be delivered to military personnel serving overseas near or before Christmas. Our shared legislative office at 929 S. Main Street, Suite 105A in Lombard will serve as the drop-off location for items to be donated to U.S. troops. Donations will be accepted through November 30 during normal business hours of 9:00 AM until 3:30 PM, Monday through Friday. By donating to this drive, we can show our appreciation and respect of those serving this country overseas. It’s a small way to make a big difference as these brave men and women spend the holiday season away from their families and loved ones.

As we have done in the past, Senator Nybo and I would also like to send care packages specifically to local soldiers from the area (IL Senate District 24 or IL House District 48). Friends and family with loved ones from the area who are currently serving in the military are encouraged to contact our office at (630) 403-8135 with their names and addresses.
Recommended items to be included in the care packages include: 
  • Books, magazines, crossword and word search puzzles, coloring books, colored pencils, dominoes, checkers or chess games 
  • iTunes Gift Cards, headphones/ear buds, DVD movies or television shows, small video games, international calling cards 
  • Baby wipes, deodorant, Kleenex, lotion, toothpaste/toothbrush, shampoo, soap, female hygiene items, shaving cream, razors 
  • Beef jerky, powdered drink mix, coffee, granola or protein bars, trail mix, dry snacks, mixed nuts 
  • Laundry detergent, fabric softener, dryer sheets, air fresheners 
  • Footballs, basketballs, soccer balls and frisbees 
Because the items will be mailed, aerosol cans/containers, food items that could melt or spoil and fragile items cannot be accepted. Thank you in advance for your participation in this year’s drive!

Breen’s Property Tax Event in Glen Ellyn Draws Large Crowd
Nearly 100 taxpayers from the 48th Legislative House District attended a free property tax forum I hosted in Glen Ellyn recently. The event offered attendees an opportunity to learn about the tax assessment process and how they could challenge an assessment they believe is too high.

I was joined at the event by Milton Township Assessor Chris LeVan and York Township Chief Commercial Assessor Jerald Rudman. Together we spoke to residents about the process that ties the value of their homes to the tax bill they receive, and outlined several exemptions and freezes that could lower tax bills in certain circumstances. We also outlined the steps required for appealing an assessment and took questions from the audience.

District 48 Summer Readers Treated to Pizza Party and Mini Golf in Glen Ellyn
We had a great turnout for our third annual summer reading party, which was held recently in Glen Ellyn. Students in grades pre-K through 5th grade who read eight or more books during their summer vacation from school were invited to join us for pizza and miniature golf at the Maryknoll Park Clubhouse in Glen Ellyn. We all had a wonderful time and I was pleased to see so many local children who kept their reading skills sharp over the summer! Many thanks to several local businesses, including Domino’s Pizza, Dunkin Donuts, Enchanted Castle, Zak’s Pizza, Walgreen’s and the Lombard Roller Rink, for either donating items or offering them at a reduced cost for the party.
Beginning October 3, State Senator Chris Nybo (R-Elmhurst) and State Representative Peter Breen (R-Lombard) will once again partner with the Ladies Auxiliary to the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the local Lilac Post 5815 for their third annual “Support Our Troops” collection drive. Items collected throughout the months of October and November will be delivered to military personnel serving overseas near or before Christmas.

“Supporting our troops is as easy as buying some of the suggested items the next time you’re in the store, and bringing them to our legislative offices. Your thoughtfulness will mean so much to the men and women who are a long way from home, especially during the holiday season,” Nybo said. “Rep. Breen and I want the brave young men and women who serve in our military—now and in years past—to know how much we appreciate their leadership and their commitment to freedom.”

The Nybo/Breen shared legislative office at 929 S. Main Street, Suite 105A in Lombard will serve as the drop-off location for items to be donated to U.S. troops. Donations will be accepted from October 3 through November 30 during normal business hours of 9:00 AM until 3:30 PM, Monday through Friday.

“By donating to this drive, we can show our appreciation and respect of those serving this country overseas,” said Breen. “It’s a small way to make a big difference as these brave men and women spend the holiday season away from their families and loved ones.”

As they have done in the past, Nybo and Breen would also like to send care packages specifically to local soldiers from the area (IL Senate District 24 or IL House District 48). Friends and family with loved ones from the area who are currently serving in the military are encouraged to contact the Nybo/Breen office with their names and addresses.

Recommended items to be included in the care packages include:
  • Books, magazines, crossword and word search puzzles, coloring books, colored pencils, dominoes, checkers or chess gamess
  • iTunes Gift Cards, headphones/ear buds, DVD movies or television shows, small video games, international calling cards 
  • Baby wipes, deodorant, Kleenex, lotion, toothpaste/toothbrush, shampoo, soap, female hygiene items, shaving cream, razors 
  • Beef jerky, powdered drink mix, coffee, granola or protein bars, trail mix, dry snacks, mixed nuts 
  • Laundry detergent, fabric softener, dryer sheets, air fresheners 
  • Footballs, basketballs, soccer balls and frisbees 
Because the items will be mailed, aerosol cans/containers, food items that could melt or spoil and fragile items cannot be accepted.

For more information about the collection drive, or to leave contact information for a specific member of the service, call Sen. Nybo’s office at (630) 969-0990 or Rep. Breen’s office at (630) 403-8135.
Equifax, an Atlanta based credit-rating agency, suffered a security breach on July 29th that exposed sensitive information of millions of Americans. Such information included social security numbers, driver’s license numbers, credit card numbers, birthdays, and addresses. It has been determined that 5.4 million Illinois residents have been affected by the breach.

The company has set up a website where you can check if your personal information was affected by the breach: www.equifaxsecurity2017.com.

Staff of the Attorney General’s Office are urging individuals impacted to protect themselves from the possibility of identity theft by doing the following:
  • Seriously consider placing a credit freeze on your credit reports with all 3 consumer reporting agencies: TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax;
  • Regularly request your free credit reports, inspect them closely, and promptly dispute any unauthorized accounts;
  • Inspect all financial account statements closely and promptly dispute any unauthorized charges;
  • Consider placing alerts on your financial accounts so your financial institution alerts you when money above a pre-designated amount is withdrawn;
  • Beware of potential phishing emails; don't open any email messages or attachments from unknown senders and do not click on any unknown links. Fraudsters will frequently send coercive and misleading emails threatening account suspension or worse if sensitive information is not provided. Remember, businesses will never ask customers to verify account information via email. If in doubt, contact the business in question directly for verification and to report phishing emails; and
  • Be on the lookout for spoofed email addresses. Spoofed email addresses are those that make minor changes in the domain name, frequently changing the letter O to the number zero, or the lowercase letter l to the number one. Scrutinize all incoming email addresses to ensure that the sender is truly legitimate.
With questions on the data breach, you can contact Equifax at 866-447-7559, or the Illinois Attorney General’s Identity Theft Hotline at 1 (866) 999-5630.
This week in Springfield, members of the General Assembly approved historic reforms to the school funding formula. The new evidence-based model is designed to help every individual student succeed. During the House floor debate on amended SB 1947, State Representative Peter Breen (R-Lombard) spoke about the bipartisanship and compromise that created the ultimate language included in the bill. During his remarks, he said, "Today with this compromise bill we have a chance to finally end the long war. We finally end the impasse. We take the school children out of the line of fire." Click here to watch Rep. Breen's full floor comments.
After two failed attempts on Monday to approve a revised school funding formula, members of the House of Representatives ultimately approved legislation that ends the impasse over the issue and guarantees funding for the 2017-2018 school year. In response to the 73-34-3 vote on amended SB 1947, State Representative Peter Breen (R-Lombard) has issued the following statement:

“With the passage of SB 1947, we end a school funding battle that has put school children in the line of political fire in Springfield. This bill offers every school-aged child the opportunity to succeed. We can now put this issue aside and focus our efforts on other pressing issues that affect our State.”

“This legislation represents that coveted middle ground where Representatives are getting what they need, but not necessarily everything they want. In particular for our schools in the 48th District, they will immediately see much-needed relief from costly unfunded Springfield mandates.”

“There are elements of this bill that I do not like. But as is the case with any negotiation, concessions from both sides brought us to a solution. This compromise ensures more funding for our local schools next year, along with additional administrative flexibility and the opportunity to seek property tax relief. But most importantly, this measure lifts the cloud of fear from kids, parents, and teachers whose schools were at risk of closing for lack of state funding.”
Citizens residing in Illinois’ 48th Legislative House District are invited to join State Representative Peter Breen (R-Lombard) and local tax assessment experts on Saturday, September 9 for a free seminar on understanding the property tax assessment process and learning how to appeal tax assessments. The 1 ½-hour event will be held from 9:00 AM until 10:30 AM at the Main Street Recreation Center, 501 Hill Street in Glen Ellyn.

Joining Breen at the informational session will be Milton Township Assessor Chris E. LeVan and York Township Assessor Deanna Wilkins. “I hear frequently from taxpayers who believe their property taxes are too high, and they are not aware that there are remedies available to them,” said Breen. “This event brings experts together to explain how tax bills are created and outline the steps for how taxpayers can participate in the appeals process if they believe they are being over-assessed.”

Due to space constraints, RSVPs are requested. If you would like to attend the property tax assessment seminar, please RSVP by calling Representative Breen’s office at (630) 403-8135.
As school children across Illinois begin returning to classrooms for the 2017-2018 school year, lawmakers were called to Springfield last week on the premise that we would resolve how we will fund Illinois’ public schools for the 2017-2018 school year. For the first time in the state’s history, the first state aid payment, due to school districts on August 10, was missed due to our inability to approve funding for the year. Pressure is mounting, which is just what House Speaker Mike Madigan and Senate President John Cullerton want. You see, as worries mount, pressure increases on lawmakers to approve legislation that benefits Chicago Public Schools at the expense of school children from all other parts of the state.

While the Senate took action on Governor Rauner’s amendatory veto of SB 1 on Sunday, August 13, the bill was not brought to the floor for a vote when members of the House of Representatives were in Springfield on Wednesday, August 16. Instead, Democrats reverted to their political playbook and engaged in partisan games and fake votes that did nothing to resolve the school funding crisis. We ended up leaving Springfield late that day without agreement on a school funding bill.

I am happy to report that the four legislative leaders have met twice and are meeting again today to discuss a possible compromise that would allow state aid payments to proceed without further delay. Since the only solution will involve true compromise, I am hopeful that partisanship and political gamesmanship can be set aside and the two sides can reach consensus on a formula that is fair and equitable for all Illinois school children and their families.

In my new role as House Republican Caucus Floor Leader, I was vocal in my disappointment about the lack of real work being done on the important issue of school funding. Click here to listen to my floor comments.

Breen Property Tax Event Scheduled for September 9 in Glen Ellyn
I hope you’ll join me on September 9 when I hold my second annual seminar where District 48 residents can learn about the process used to create property tax bills and about the steps to take to appeal an assessment if you believe you are being over-assessed. The event will take place from 9:00 until 10:30 AM on the 9th at the Main Street Recreation Center, 501 Hill Street in Glen Ellyn. Space is limited for this free community outreach event, so please call my Lombard office at (630) 403-8135 if you plan to attend.

Rep. Breen Supports HR 569 Condemning Terrorism in Charlottesville
In response to the violence in Charlottesville, VA that left one dead and several others injured, members of the House of Representatives approved a House Resolution last week condemning violence and hate. HR 569 repudiates and condemns white supremacists, neo-Nazis, the Ku Klux Klan, and any other group that espouses hate and seeks to undermine the ideals of Illinois and the nation. The resolution also condemns the acts of violence in Charlottesville as domestic terrorism. I spoke during the floor discussion of the resolution and expressed my disgust over the events that transpired in Charlottesville. Click here to watch my full floor comments.

Breen Joins Republican Colleagues in Pressing for Repeal of Cook County Sugar Tax
On the heels of being hit with a 32% income tax hike, the residents of Cook County were recently saddled with a costly tax on sweetened beverages. I recently joined State Representatives Michael McAuliffe (R-Chicago), Christine Winger (R-Bloomingdale), Grant Wehrli (R-Naperville) and Keith Wheeler (R-Oswego) in Chicago at the James R. Thompson Center to introduce legislation to immediately repeal the one-cent-per-ounce Cook County Sweetened Beverage Tax. The tax, which went into effect on August 2, will result in Cook County consumers having to pay on average 67 percent more for a 2-liter of pop, 43 percent more for a gallon of juice drink or sweetened iced tea, and 29 percent more for a 12-pack.

Specifically, HB 4082 would prevent any home rule county from imposing a tax on sweetened beverages based on volume sold and repeal local laws already in effect regarding these types of taxes. The City of Philadelphia recently enacted a similar, 1.5-cent-an-ounce tax on sweetened beverages to pay for universal preschool. Following the implementation of the tax, beverage sales fell by as much as 50 percent and more than 400 jobs were lost. Additionally, actual beverage tax collections for the first six months are $6.9 million below the city’s estimate of $46.2 million.

I also filed HB 4084, which takes a broader approach in prohibiting these types of taxes. While similar to HB 4082 in desired effect, HB 4084 prohibits all local governments from imposing any tax that is based on weight or volume. This would apply to the Cook County sweetened beverage tax, but would also thwart other similar attempts to tax substances based on weight or volume. Both bill would repeal the Cook County tax, but differ slightly in how it would be accomplished.

Breen Legislation with Potential to Save Small Businesses & Nonprofits Millions is Signed into Law by Gov. Rauner
Last week Governor Rauner signed into law a bill I authored that has the potential to save Illinois small businesses and not-for-profits millions in electronic filing fees. HB 3514, now Public Act 100-0186, corrects an unfair practice that penalized businesses and nonprofits by charging an automatic ‘expedited service fee’ of $25, $50 or more on every electronic (rather than paper) filing with the Secretary of State’s office. E-filing reduces errors, saves paper and saves money, so small businesses and charities should be encouraged, not discouraged, to file documents electronically.

Leaders within the Illinois business community applauded the passage and signing of the bill. Mark Grant, Illinois Director for the National Federation of Independent Business, said, “There’s no justification for state government to charge a premium for e-filing when it actually streamlines the process and reduces costs to the state. This law is common sense and we want to thank Representative Breen for sponsoring it and Governor Rauner for signing it into law.”

Todd Maisch, President and CEO of the Illinois Chamber of Commerce agreed, saying, “Small businesses are the backbone of our economy, and lawmakers need to be doing whatever they can to ease burdensome regulations. HB 3514 allows businesses to file forms electronically without triggering an automatic expedition fee, and we appreciate Representative Breen’s willingness to bring this cost-saving legislation forward.”

The provisions of the new law will take effect on July 1, 2018.

Governor Rauner Signs Breen Bill that Saves Township Taxpayers Money
Earlier this month, Governor Bruce Rauner signed a bill I wrote that will save townships money when they dispose of surplus wood chips generated through routine tree maintenance. HB 2423, now in the statutes as Public Act 100-0054, provides townships with flexibility in the process for distribution of waste materials generated from tree and branch removal. 

The need for the legislation was brought to me by Milton Township Highway Commissioner Gary Muehlfelt and York Township Highway Commissioner Dick Schroeder. They told me that, while townships regularly take down dead or diseased trees and fallen branches, there was no provision in the statutes to allow townships to deliver the wood chips to residents who would like to use them as a landscaping material. And it costs much more for our townships to deliver those surplus wood chips to specialty landfills, instead of providing them to taxpaying residents who can put them to good use.

Upon the signing of the bill, Commissioner Muehlfelt said, “This small change in the law will make a big difference in how we can dispose of the mulch that is created from our routine tree maintenance. I appreciate Representative Breen's willingness to bring this idea forward and incorporate it into a new law.”

Commissioner Schroeder agreed, and said, “By allowing township officials to use their best judgment in how they will dispose of tree waste, our costs are reduced and taxpayers can have access to free mulch for their yards and gardens. It is a win-win for the taxpayers who support township services and for residents who would benefit from the free mulch.”

Breen’s Legislation Allowing 360-Lid Technology for Craft Brewers Signed into Law
At the Illinois Bicentennial Craft Beer Competition held at this year’s State Fair, Governor Bruce Rauner announced that he signed into law my legislation to allow craft brewing companies in Illinois to utilize new “360-lid” technology. During his remarks, he thanked the owners of Noon Whistle Brewing in Lombard for bringing forward the idea for the legislation. These 360-lids are the newest innovation in beer can technology, and permitting their use will provide Illinois brewers with a competitive edge in the marketplace. By essentially removing the entire lid of a beer can, an aluminum drinking vessel is created that allows consumers to better enjoy the aromas associated with IPAs and other hoppy beers. With the signing of HB 2386, Illinois becomes the 15th state to allow these new lids. HB 2386 is now listed in the statutes as Public Act 100-0051.

Rauner Signs Breen Bill to Improve Government Transparency
Unfunded mandates include any State-initiated action that requires a local unit of government to absorb a new function at their own cost. As taxpayers continue to plead for property tax relief, it is important to shine a light on the true cost of unfunded mandates and how they drive up the cost of government. 

A new layer of transparency with regard to unfunded mandates is now available due to legislation I authored that was signed into law earlier this month. SB 2066 improves transparency as it relates to the cost of unfunded mandates on local governments. The provisions of the new law apply to items listed in the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity’s (DCEO) catalog of state mandates.

When government passes along these mandates, costs really increase over time. If elected officials can see the cumulative effect of these mandates, my hope is that they’ll make unfunded mandate relief a priority. The idea for the legislation was brought forward by Lt. Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti, and the new law is listed in the Illinois statutes as Public Act 100-0242.
A new layer of transparency is now available in Illinois government thanks to a bill sponsored by State Representative Peter Breen (R-Lombard) that was signed into law this month.

SB 2066 improves transparency as it relates to the cost of unfunded mandates on local governments. The provisions of the new law apply to items listed in the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity’s (DECO) catalog of state mandates.

“As taxpayers continue to plead for property tax relief, it is important to shine a light on the true cost of unfunded mandates from Springfield and how they drive up the cost of our local government,” said Breen, the bill’s Chief House Sponsor. “When government passes along these mandates, costs really increase over time. If elected officials can see the cumulative effect of these mandates, my hope is that they’ll make unfunded mandate relief a priority.”

Unfunded mandates include any State-initiated action that requires a local unit of government to absorb a new function at their own cost. The idea for the legislation was brought forward by Lt. Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti. “The Lt. Governor’s Consolidation and Unfunded Mandates Task Force explored the staggering costs tied to unfunded mandates in Illinois and determined that legislators needed to be aware of how significantly their actions are increasing the tax burden on Illinoisans.”

The new law is listed in the Illinois statutes as Public Act 100-0242.
A new law authored by State Representative Peter Breen (R-Lombard) with the potential to save Illinois small businesses and not-for-profits millions in electronic filing fees has been signed into law.

HB 3514 was signed by Governor Bruce Rauner on Friday as Public Act 100-0186. Breen, a fierce advocate for small businesses in Illinois, said the provisions of the new law correct what he viewed as an unfair practice that penalized businesses and nonprofits for filing forms electronically rather than on paper. “I was shocked to learn that businesses and nonprofits were being charged an automatic ‘expedited service fee’ of $25, $50 or more on every electronic filing with the Secretary of State’s office,” said Breen. “E-filing reduces errors, saves paper and saves money, so small businesses and charities should be encouraged, not discouraged, to file documents electronically.”

Upon learning of the bill’s signing, Mark Grant, Illinois Director for the National Federation of Independent Business, thanked Breen for his role as a champion for small business. “There’s no justification for state government to charge a premium for e-filing when it actually streamlines the process and reduces costs to the state,” Grant said. “This law is common sense and we want to thank Representative Breen for sponsoring it and Governor Rauner for signing it into law.”

Todd Maisch, President and CEO of the Illinois Chamber of Commerce agreed, and added that the bill’s passage sends a message of support to small business owners. “Small businesses are the backbone of our economy, and lawmakers need to be doing whatever they can to ease burdensome regulations,” Maisch said. “HB 3514 allows businesses to file forms electronically without triggering an automatic expedition fee, and we appreciate Representative Breen’s willingness to bring this cost-saving legislation forward.”

The provisions of the new law will take effect on July 1, 2018.
In response to the violence over the weekend in Charlottesville, VA that left one dead and several others injured, members of the House of Representatives stood united on Wednesday as they approved a House Resolution condemning violence and hate. HR 569 repudiates and condemns white supremacists, neo-Nazis, the Ku Klux Klan, and any other group that espouses hate and seeks to undermine the ideals of Illinois and the nation. The resolution also condemns the acts of violence in Charlottesville as domestic terrorism.

State Representative Peter Breen (R-Lombard) spoke during the floor discussion of the resolution and said, "Hatred is not welcome in any form in the State of Illinois." Click here to watch Breen's full floor comments.