State Representative Peter Breen (R-Lombard) has been named a “Friend of Manufacturing” by the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association (IMA) for his votes that impacted the manufacturing sector in 2017-2018.

“After years of neglect and even hostility, it’s time for our state government to support the manufacturing and business community—Illinois’ economic climate depends on the success of these job creators,” said Breen. “It’s an honor to be recognized for my work to help manufacturing companies to start and grow in our state.”

Upon announcing the award recipients, IMA Vice President & CEO Mark Denzler said, “While we often hear from lawmakers that they are concerned about jobs and economic development, the IMA’s Legislative Voting Scorecard will actually show which elected officials support Illinois job creators. The IMA appreciates those lawmakers who have a strong record of support for the manufacturing sector.”

The IMA is a not-for-profit trade association for Illinois manufacturers. Founded in 1893, it is the oldest and largest statewide manufacturing trade association in the United States. The IMA’s mission is to strengthen the economic, social, environmental and governmental conditions for manufacturing and allied enterprises in the state of Illinois, resulting in an enlarged business base and increased employment.

Illinois State Representatives were scored on their votes on 23 different bills that were brought to the House floor for a vote during the 100th General Assembly, and those receiving a score of 80% or higher received the award. Click here to view the full scorecard and a list of bills that were judged.
A large group of Pre-K through 5th grade students who participated in State Representative Peter Breen’s Summer Reading Safari program joined the lawmaker this week for a celebration of their accomplishments as young readers.

Approximately 60 readers and family members gathered at the Lombard Log Cabin on Main Street in Lombard for a party that included treats provided by Mariano’s, Dunkin Donuts and Culver’s. After presenting each reader with a certificate of achievement, Breen read two of his favorite children’s books to the group; "Hey, Al" by Arthur Torinks, and "Fortunately", by Remy Charlip. A drawing was also held with prizes supplied by Brookfield Zoo, Enchanted Castle and the Lombard Roller Rink.

“My annual summer reading program continues to be very successful, and I was pleased to see so many young readers reach their summer reading goals,” said Breen.

Breen’s Summer Reading Safari program is available to all children in grades Pre-K through 5th grade who reside in the 48th Legislative House District, and those who reach a summer reading goal of finishing eight book are invited to a fall reading celebration party.
Rep. Breen Named “Champion of Free Enterprise” by Illinois Chamber of Commerce
One of my primary focuses in the General Assembly has been promoting small business and job growth. I was pleased to learn earlier this month that I have been named a “Champion of Free Enterprise” by the Illinois Chamber of Commerce for my 2017-2018 record in support of policy initiatives that support Illinois businesses and in opposition to measures that seek to over-regulate and overburden our state’s job creators. 

Upon announcing my selection as an award winner, Todd Maisch, President and CEO of the Illinois Chamber of Commerce said, “While many Illinois lawmakers provide lip service to the need for pro-growth reforms, Representative Breen is committed to supporting and defending Illinois employers throughout the State. Representative Breen's leadership on the 5G Internet legislation was extremely beneficial and ensures consumers throughout Illinois will stay on the forefront of wireless technology.”

Click here to view a summary of all bills that were scored.

Breen Joins DuPage Area Lawmakers to Help Loaves & Fishes with Collection of Personal Care Items
This summer, my office sponsored its first joint shred truck and food collection event, which was so popular, we’re going to make it an annual event. Your generosity resulted in over 800 individual food and personal care items being donated to the Glen Ellyn Food Pantry. Together, we “Packed the Pantry” so full that the various items didn’t fit in the collection room! 

This month I am partnering with several of my DuPage County Republican colleagues to assist Loaves & Fishes with the collection of personal care items. Loaves & Fishes is a not-for-profit food pantry that feeds up to 800 DuPage County families per week, including many from the 48th District. At Loaves & Fishes, families in need can visit the pantry and shop for free in a grocery store-like setting. Unfortunately, the pantry is experiencing a shortage of personal care items to supplement the food staples families need. Items in short supply right now include:
  • diapers and wipes 
  • laundry detergent 
  • toilet paper 
  • shampoo 
  • toothpaste 
  • household cleaning products 
My legislative office at 929 S. Main Street, Suite 105-A in Lombard is one of nine legislative offices in DuPage County that are serving as drop-off locations for Loaves & Fishes donations. The office is typically open between the hours of 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, Monday through Friday.

More than 100 Taxpayers Attend Rep. Peter Breen’s Property Tax Seminar in Glen Ellyn
We had a standing-room-only crowd of over 100 residents at our recent free property tax forum in Glen Ellyn. Those in attendance learned about the tax assessment process and how to challenge an inaccurate assessment. I was joined at the event by Milton Township Assessor Chris LeVan and York Township Assessor Deanna Wilkins, along with their staff. The assessors explained the process that ties the value of folks’ homes to the eventual tax bill that arrives in their mailboxes. They also outlined the exemptions that can be used to lower assessments and the steps required for appealing an assessment. Following the presentation, we all took questions from audience members on a variety of topics. Feedback was very positive, and everyone left with a better understanding of the process.” Click here to view the Power Point presentation that was used during the forum. 

Grant Money Delayed Since 2009 for Ray Graham House Improvements Released for Payment
State funds awarded to the Ray Graham Association for infrastructure and safety improvements that have been delayed since 2009 are finally on their way to this fine local nonprofit. The funds were initially awarded as part of the Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity’s (DECO) Illinois Jobs Now! Capital Plan, but only a portion of the funds were ever delivered.

The Ray Graham Association was awarded an $11,000 grant in 2009, but the money never arrived. They eventually received $2,750 in 2014, but the balance remained bottled up in Springfield. Through action announced by the Governor’s Office on Management & Budget (GOMB), the remaining $8,250 has now been authorized to be released.

The Ray Graham Association supports more than 2,000 DuPage County residents and their families annually by providing a supportive and independent living environment for those with developmental disabilities, and by helping children and adults with disabilities live a successful and rewarding life.

College of DuPage to Receive More Than $700,000 in State Funds for Campus Renovation and Improvement Projects
DuPage County residents pay some of the highest taxes in the country, and we regularly send significantly more dollars to Springfield than we get back for local service delivery. But recently, we were able to secure some of those state resources for vital improvement projects at the College of DuPage (COD). 

More than $709,000 in State funds included in the Fiscal Year 2019 budget for use by the Illinois Community College Board are headed toward COD, to assist with a variety of improvement and renovation projects at the college’s primary Glen Ellyn campus and at the Carol Stream campus. This is $709,000 that would have had to be procured through other sources, like higher property taxes, without the funding from the state.

Projects receiving funding include:
  • Asphalt and concrete repairs, surface patching and sealing, pavement sealing on roads and in parking lots throughout campus 
  • Electronic lock systems upgrades to replace outdated, deteriorating or damaged access control wiring and addition of new electronic locks on currently unserved egress doors to main campus security 
  • Berg Instructional Center boiler overhaul of equipment over 15 years old to prevent service interruption or complete failure of heating equipment 
  • Miller Homeland Security Center/Health Sciences Center equipment recommissioning to optimize functionality, energy efficiency and to comply with federal guidelines 
  • Replace Student Resource Center electric boiler which is well beyond its useful service life 
  • Technical Education Center flue stack replacement resulting from deteriorating and rusting seals 
  • Berg Instructional Center boiler breeching and asbestos abatement 
  • Carol Stream boiler replacement of a unit that has exceeded its useful life 
  • Technical Education Center building automation system (BAS) replacement of the obsolete system which is original to the building and no longer supported by the manufacturer 
September is Preparedness Month in Illinois
In the case of a public emergency in this area, are you prepared? Would you know how to reach your family and how to remain safe? During closing ceremonies of the 2018 Illinois Emergency Management Agency Training Summit in Springfield, Governor Rauner proclaimed September as Preparedness Month in Illinois. Illinois’ designation aligns with National Preparedness Month. 

The theme for this year’s National Preparedness Month campaign is “Disasters Happen. Prepare Now. Learn How.” The state is partnering with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in the month-long campaign that encourages Americans to take simple steps to prepare for emergencies in their homes, businesses and communities. Having a plan that includes where to go and how to communicate during disasters, as well as an emergency supply kit, could save the lives of your family, friends, neighbors and employees.

The Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) offers disaster preparedness information on the Ready Illinois website (www.Ready.Illinois.gov), a one-stop resource for detailed information about what to do before, during and after disasters. During large-scale disasters, IEMA uses the Ready Illinois website, Facebook and Twitter pages to provide critical information about the incident, including shelter locations, road closures, safety information, photos and more. For more information about emergency and disaster preparedness, visit ready.illinois.gov.

Still Time to Take Breen’s 2018 Legislative Survey
I am still collecting responses to my 2018 online survey. I hope to receive wide participation by the residents of the 48th District. This year’s survey includes some multiple choice questions and an area for an open-ended response. The survey is now open. Please take a few minutes to share your input. You can click here to get started. 

Illinois Launches College and Career Planning Tool
For the first time, Illinois high school students will have access to data that shows how much they might earn if they graduate from colleges and universities located in the state. 

ILCollege2Career.com, unveiled at the governor’s quarterly Children’s Cabinet meeting this month, links employment and higher education data so users can compare the relative earnings value of college degrees. The data is broken down by schools and area of study, so that students can compare the earnings potential of business degrees, for example, from different public and private institutions in the state.

The idea is to help students and parents make college decisions based on an evaluation of real-time successes of a school’s graduates, in addition to other factors such as cost, average debt levels, and likelihood to graduate on-time. The tool will also show the benefits of investing in higher education, as it demonstrates how connected our thriving higher education system is to the workforce development of our state.

ILCollege2Career.com is the product of collaboration between the Governor’s Office, Illinois Board of Higher Education (IBHE), the Illinois Community College Board (ICCB), the Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC), and the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES).

The launch of the web site follows a number of recent education achievements in the state including:
  • $25 million allocated for higher education in Fiscal Year 2019 and merit-based scholarship program AIM HIGH to encourage Illinois’ best and brightest high school grads to stay in Illinois for college 
  • A law that requires the ISAC to develop a three-year pilot program to better educate students on loan amounts, repayment and interest; 
  • A new law that creates a task force to study how student college or career interest data can be collected and shared between high schools and colleges so higher education institutions will be able to enhance their programs and services to support the specific needs of their incoming student body; 
  • Revisions to the Monetary Award Program (MAP) to prioritize access for existing grant recipients, and; 
  • Strengthened degree-advising services that make it easier for students to transfer credits between Illinois schools. 
Opioid Prescriptions Declining in Illinois
The legal dispensing of opioid pain management medications, including OxyContin, declined in 2017. The data was seen as evidence that steps are being taken to reduce opioid abuse in Illinois. In many cases of opioid abuse and addiction, a patient is introduced to opioids through the legitimate use of prescription painkillers. Physicians who provide treatment to persons with one-time pain management needs, such as post-operative patients, are being taught to prescribe lower doses of opioids in smaller quantities. Programs approved by the Illinois General Assembly are being used to improve anti-opioid continuing education efforts for all medical caregivers, including physicians and pharmacists.

This recently-released Illinois opioid data came from the statewide Prescription Monitoring Program, a database monitor operated by the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS). The database monitor has been recommended to medical care providers since the 1970s, but in 2017 the General Assembly changed the law to mandate prescribing physicians to enroll in the Program. Work done by the Illinois General Assembly, with the consultative input of the Illinois State Medical Society, now ensures that Illinois professional regulators and law enforcement have high-quality, universal data to use to fight against opioid drug abuse and addiction.
State Representative Peter Breen (R-Lombard) announced today that the Governor’s office on Management and Budget (GOMB) has signed off on the release of $709,055 in State funds to assist College of DuPage (COD) with a variety of improvement and renovation projects at the college’s primary Glen Ellyn campus and at the Carol Stream campus.

“The College of DuPage is a world-class institution of higher learning that serves more than 28,000 students each semester,” said Breen. “Keeping the campus buildings and infrastructure in a state of good repair is costly, and I am pleased to see the State of Illinois making an investment in our local community college.”

In announcing the project funding on Tuesday, Governor Bruce Rauner said, “Infrastructure investment is a catalyst for job creation and economic development. We signed a bipartisan budget in June that includes funds for improvement projects that benefit local businesses and residents. This kind of investment is how government can play a positive role in the Illinois economy.”

Total project costs at COD are estimated at $955,000, with COD agreeing to pay $245,945 while the State pays the remaining $709,055. Projects receiving funding include:
  • Asphalt and concrete repairs, surface patching and sealing, pavement sealing on roads and in parking lots throughout campus 
  • Electronic lock systems upgrades to replace outdated, deteriorating or damaged access control wiring and addition of new electronic locks on currently unserved egress doors to main campus security 
  • Berg Instructional Center boiler overhaul of equipment over 15 years old to prevent service interruption or complete failure of heating equipment 
  • Miller Homeland Security Center/Health Sciences Center equipment recommissioning to optimize functionality, energy efficiency and to comply with federal guidelines 
  • Replace Student Resource Center electric boiler which is well beyond its useful service life 
  • Technical Education Center flue stack replacement resulting from deteriorating and rusting seals 
  • Berg Instructional Center boiler breeching and asbestos abatement 
  • Carol Stream boiler replacement of a unit that has exceeded its useful life 
  • Technical Education Center building automation system (BAS) replacement of the obsolete system which is original to the building and no longer supported by the manufacturer 
“DuPage County residents pay some of the highest taxes in the country, and they regularly send significantly more dollars to Springfield than we ever get back for local service delivery,” Breen said. “I am thrilled to see some of those state resources coming back to the local level at COD to offset the costs of these projects.”

The COD capital projects allocation is part of $11.3 million in project funds that were released for use this week by community colleges throughout Illinois. Additional funds for other community college capital projects are expected to be announced in the coming weeks.
State Representative Peter Breen (R-Lombard) has been named a “Champion of Free Enterprise” by the Illinois Chamber of Commerce for his 2017-2018 voting record in support of policy initiatives that support Illinois businesses and against measures that seek to over-regulate or overburden the state’s job creators.

Every two years the Illinois Chamber recognizes those legislators whose voting records most support the business community with their Champions of Free Enterprise Awards. “One of my primary focuses in the General Assembly has been promoting small business and job growth. It’s an honor to have that work recognized by the Chamber of Commerce,” said Breen.

“The Chamber’s legislative ratings let Illinois families, small businesses, and taxpayers know if legislators voted in favor of private sector job creation and a stronger economy, said Todd Maisch, President and CEO of the Illinois Chamber of Commerce. “While many Illinois lawmakers provide lip service to the need for pro-growth reforms, Representative Breen is committed to supporting and defending Illinois employers throughout the State. Representative Breen's leadership on the 5G Internet legislation was extremely beneficial and ensures consumers throughout Illinois will stay on the forefront of wireless technology.”

The Chamber’s ratings are based on legislators’ votes on the key business legislation during the 100th General Assembly. The votes in the Senate and House were selected based on their impact on the business community. In cases where more than one roll call was taken on a bill, the most significant vote impacting the resolution of the issue was selected for scoring.

When scoring, the Chamber was looking for a “no” vote on the 32% tax increase, proposed red tape for call center operators, an electricity rate increase, expensive regulations to Internet web site operators, a $15 minimum wage, a gross receipts tax on investment management services and insincere workers’ compensation reform. The Chamber was looking for a “yes” vote on legislation that bring Illinois to the forefront of 5G Internet, state preemption of autonomous vehicles, comprehensive procurement reform, and renewing the state’s EDGE tax credit. Click here to view a summary of all bills that were scored.

“Cutting government red tape and promoting business development are critical to growing a healthy, vibrant Illinois economy,” said Breen. “As a legislator, this is a policy area I take very seriously because business—especially small business—drives the Illinois economy. Our path toward future financial stability and prosperity depends on reining in our spending, reducing taxes and fees, and eliminating undue roadblocks to Illinois residents who are starting and building businesses.”

Legislators with Illinois Chamber ratings averaging 85% or better over the previous two General Assemblies have demonstrated their commitment to legislation that frees the entrepreneurial spirit and qualify for the award.
State Representative Peter Breen (R-Lombard) is working with a coalition of DuPage County Republican legislators to address a shortage of specific items at Naperville’s Loaves & Fishes pantry. Throughout the month of September, Breen and eight other Republican lawmakers are spearheading a collection drive to replenish the pantry’s supply of personal care items.

“Loaves & Fishes is a local not-for-profit that provides a valuable service to struggling DuPage families,” said Breen. “About 800 families per week rely on Loaves & Fishes to provide food and other essentials, and I am glad to help bring attention to the pantry’s needs and to serve as a drop-off location for donations.”

When families in need visit Loaves & Fishes, they can shop for free in a grocery store-like setting. According to Loaves & Fishes President and CEO Mike Havala, the pantry is experiencing a shortage of personal care items to supplement the food staples families need. Items needed include:
  • diapers and wipes 
  • laundry detergent 
  • toilet paper 
  • shampoo 
  • toothpaste 
  • household cleaning products. 
“We are very grateful to the DuPage County Representatives and Senators for their collection of personal care items,” said Havala. “Having these essential items offers added dignity to struggling families and individuals.”

Those who wish to donate may drop items off at the following legislative offices in DuPage County:
  • State Rep. Peter Breen- 929 S. Main St. Suite 105A, Lombard, 9:00 am to 4:00 pm M-F 
  • State Senator Michael Connelly- 552 S. Washington St., Suite 104, Naperville, 8:00 am to 5:00pm M-F 
  • State Senator John Curran- 7501 South Lemont Road, Suite 315, Woodridge, 10:00 am to 3:00 pm M-F (please call prior to drop off) 
  • State Rep. Jim Durkin- 16W281 83rd St. Burr Ridge, 8:30am to 5:00 pm M-F 
  • State Rep. Deanne Mazzochi- 1 S. Cass Avenue, Suite 205, Westmont, 9:00 am to 4:00 pm M-F 
  • State Senator Jim Oberweis- 959 Oak Street, North Aurora, 9:00 am to 5:00 pm M-Th, 9:00 am to 4:00 pm F 
  • State Rep David Olsen- 633 Rogers Street, Suite 108, Downers Grove, 9:00 am to 3:00 pm M-F (please call prior to drop off) 
  • State Rep. Grant Wehrli- 55 S. Main Street, Suite 383, Naperville, 10:00 am to 2:00 pm M-Th 
  • State Rep. Christine Winger- One Tiffany Pointe, Suite G3, Bloomingdale, 9:00 am to 4:00 pm M-F

At the end of August, State Representative Peter Breen mailed a comprehensive 2018 Legislative Report to households in the 48th District. The Report includes a summary of legislative accomplishments and information regarding a legislative survey. To access the full report, click here.