Civic News & Info
Governor Quinn Takes Bill Action **Friday, December 30, 2011** PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Civic News & Info
Written by Nafia Khan   
Wednesday, 04 January 2012 14:38

CHICAGO – December 30, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today took action on the following bills:


Bill No.: HB 355

An Act Concerning: Government

Makes numerous changes to the State Employee Health Savings Account Law to comply with the State Employee’s Group Insurance Act and IRS Code.

Action: Signed

Effective Date: Immediately


Bill No.: HB 1602

An Act Concerning: Wildlife

Allows people with temporary disabilities to receive permits to use crossbows while hunting.

Action: Signed

Effective Date: Immediately


Bill No.: HB 3036

An Act Concerning: Public Utilities

Contains a number of changes to amend smart grid legislation (PA 97-0616). Changes pertain to consumer and regulatory protections.

Action: Signed

Effective Date: Immediately


Bill No.: SB 773

An Act Concerning: Public Aid

Allows the Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS) to deposit federal Medicaid matching dollars into the Public Aid Recoveries Trust Fund (PARTF).

Action: Signed

Effective Date: Jan. 1


Bill No.: SB 1226

An Act Concerning: Education

Increases the enrollment at the Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences from 600 to 720 students. Requires all students to reside within the city of Chicago, with at least 50 percent of the student population residing within a 2.5 mile radius of the school.

Action: Signed

Effective Date: Immediately


Bill No.: SB 1762

An Act Concerning: State Government

Allows HFS to exempt applicants for 20 senior level positions from education requirements, provided they have backgrounds in healthcare administration, healthcare finance, healthcare data analytics or healthcare information technology.

Action: Signed

Effective Date: Immediately


Bill No.: SB 1795

An Act Concerning: Education

Transfers Illinois business and vocational schools from the jurisdiction of ISBE to the IBHE, and makes changes to the school approval process and general procedures.

Action: Signed

Effective Date: Feb. 1



Iowa Supreme Court Opinions PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Civic News & Info
Written by Iowa Judicial Branch   
Wednesday, 04 January 2012 14:37
Iowa Supreme Court Opinions

December 30, 2011

Notice: The opinions posted on this site are slip opinions only. Under the Rules of Appellate Procedure a party has a limited number of days to request a rehearing after the filing of an opinion. Also, all slip opinions are subject to modification or correction by the court. Therefore, opinions on this site are not to be considered the final decisions of the court. The official published opinions of the Iowa Supreme Court are those published in the North Western Reporter published by West Group.

Opinions released before April 2006 and available in the archives are posted in Word format. Opinions released after April 2006 are posted to the website in PDF (Portable Document Format).   Note: To open a PDF you must have the free Acrobat Reader installed. PDF format preserves the original appearance of a document without requiring you to possess the software that created that document. For more information about PDF read: Using the Adobe Reader.

For your convenience, the Judicial Branch offers a free e-mail notification service for Supreme Court opinions, Court of Appeals opinions, press releases and orders. To subscribe, click here.

NOTE: Copies of these opinions may be obtained from the Clerk of the Supreme Court, Judicial Branch Building, 1111 East Court Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50319, for a fee of fifty cents per page.

No. 11–0532


No. 11–1068

IOWA RIGHT TO LIFE COMMITTEE, INC., Plaintiff, vs. MEGAN TOOKER, In Her Official Capacity as Iowa Ethics and Campaign Disclosure Board Executive Director; JAMES ALBERT, JOHN WALSH, PATRICIA HARPER, GERALD SULLIVAN, SAIMA ZAFAR, and CAROLE TILLOTSON, In Their Official Capacities as Iowa

How to Overthrow the Status Quo? PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Civic News & Info
Written by Ginny Grimsley   
Wednesday, 04 January 2012 13:35
Promote Civic Responsibility – and Start Young, Expert Says

Across the nation, people take to the streets in record numbers to overthrow the greed and politics they say has hijacked the American dream. No longer can you work hard and get ahead, they say: The system is rigged to promote the rich, the powerful, and the greedy.

The disenfranchised Occupy protesters and the citizens of Main Street have united in untold numbers. Time magazine names "The Protester" its 2011 Person of the Year. The young people who turned out in droves to vote in 2008 are now abandoning the political process; seeing hope in neither the Republicans nor the Democrats, they’re disengaging out of disillusionment.

Former TV news anchor and reporter Mary Jane McKittrick, author of “Boomer and Halley -- Election Day: A Town Votes for Civic Responsibility” (, says it's time to remind people that civic duty is not solely the responsibility of elected officials.

"It's easy to blame Wall Street, the White House, Congress, the pundits, and everyone in between," says McKittrick. "But we fail to see the role we've all played in the fiasco. We voted for these people. We abdicated our responsibilities to them.  We let them have the power.

“Now we, the people, are powerless. No wonder our kids think the system is broken and they don't need to participate."

It’s a problem she saw coming and why she wrote “Boomer and Halley – Election Day,” winner of a Mom’s Choice Award for Juvenile Humor. It’s part of a series designed to help parents teach 4- to 8-year-olds civil values, including lifelong civic involvement. A successful Democracy depends on civic-minded citizens, but people don’t get that way overnight, McKittrick points out. It’s a value instilled in children from a very young age.

That’s not happening.

“We’re the 99 percent complacent; people have stopped being involved. America has stopped voting,” McKittrick said, citing a Project Vote analysis of the November 2010 elections, in which a majority of registered voters did not go to the polls.

A study of American teenagers’ civic participation from 1976 through 2005 found a general decline over the decades, according to the MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Transitions to Adulthood.

The high point for conventional participation, like writing to a public official, came in 1978. But even then, only 27 percent of 17- to 19-year-olds declared such intentions, according to a September 2009 article published by the MacArthur Foundation.

“Even alternative forms of engagement — such as boycotting and demonstrating — declined among high school seniors during the 1980s, reaching a low of 17 percent in 1986,” according to the authors.

That number settled at around 20 percent during the late 1990s through 2005, they wrote.

The “Yes we can!” campaign of then-presidential candidate Barack Obama in 2008 inspired record numbers of young people to get involved. But two years later, they dropped out of sight.

Young Americans, blacks and lower-income Americans participated in the election in historic numbers, according to the non-partisan non-profit Project Vote. But by 2010, 23 percent of 18- to 29-year-olds were “civically alienated,” a Tufts University study found, and they mostly stayed home during the Nov. 2, 2010 midterm elections.

“Non-voters were the majority in 2010,” according to Dr. Lorraine Minnite, who analyzed turnout for Project Vote.

Interestingly, people ages 65 and older – who have a rich history of civic involvement – constituted 21 percent of voters though they make up only 13 percent of the population.

“For the first time in quite awhile, we’re seeing Americans in the streets,” says McKittrick. “But no one’s talking to the kids about the protests. Children should be taught what they mean and shown how the situation can be turned around. This is a very teachable moment.”

Start now teaching children to pay attention, take responsibility and work through problems together, she says.

“Do that, and they’ll probably never have to Occupy a park.”

About Mary Jane McKittrick

Mary Jane McKittrick is the creator, author, producer and publisher of the Boomer and Halley series of children’s books, comic tales that teach core values such as honesty and responsibility. McKittrick is a former broadcast journalist and holds a dual bachelor’s degree in Theatre Arts and Speech Communication.

Hope Creek Care back payments received by Rock Island County PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Civic News & Info
Written by Shelly L. Chapman   
Tuesday, 27 December 2011 14:24

(Rock Island) It is with great pleasure that Rock Island County announces that it is in receipt of back payments from the state of Illinois for Hope Creek Care.  Within the last two weeks, Rock Island County has received a payment of $914,029.24 for Medicaid payments due from July, August and September 2011 and another $1,750,656.80 was received just this week which was due from October 2009.

Receipt of these payments is due largely to the assistance of Representative Pat Verschoore (D), Milan, District 72, from Senator Mike Jacobs (D), Moline, District 36 and from Representative Rich Morthland (R), Port Byron, District 71.  These legislators have supported Rock Island County and our nursing home, Hope Creek Care, for a great number of years.

With the receipt of these funds, Hope Creek Care is on the way to being back on solid financial ground.  We look forward to continued timely payments from the State and appreciate greatly the work Representative Verschoore, Senator Jacobs, and Representative Morthland put forth.


Rock Island County awarded Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Civic News & Info
Written by Shelly L. Chapman   
Tuesday, 27 December 2011 14:15

(Rock Island) The Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial been awarded to Rock Island County by the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada (GFOA) for its comprehensive annual financial report (CAFR).  The Certificate of Achievement is the highest form of recognition in the area of governmental accounting and financial reporting, and its attainment represents a significant accomplishment be a government and its management.

An Award of Financial Reporting Achievement has been awarded to April L. Palmer, Rock Island County Auditor, as the primarily responsible individual for preparing the award winning CAFR.  Ms. Palmer has been an employee of Rock Island County for over 18 years and has been serving in the capacity of the County Auditor since April of 2011.  She was formally appointed to the office on May 18, 2011 after serving as Chief Deputy to former Auditor Diana L. Robinson prior to that time.

The CAFR has been judged by an impartial panel to meet the high standards of the program including demonstrating a constructive "spirit of full disclosure" to clearly communicate its financial story and motivate potential users and user groups to read the CAFR.  The GFOA is a non-profit professional association serving approximately 17,500 government finance professionals with offices in Chicago, Illinois, and Washington, DC.

The Rock Island County Board is extremely proud of the accomplishments of Ms. Palmer and commends her for the achievement.  The CAFR is available for review on the Rock Island County website,


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