Illinois State Representative Sam Yingling’s Co-sponsored Transparency and Consolidation Measures Pass Overwhelmingly in House
Measures sponsored by state Rep. Sam Yingling, D-Grayslake, to make local governments more accountable and responsive to taxpayers passed the Illinois House of Representatives with overwhelming bipartisan support.
“As stewards of taxpayer money, legislators have the responsibility to ensure that taxpayer money is being spent responsibly,” Yingling said. “These measures will help residents track how their hard-earned dollars are being spent and consolidate services to ensure that they are getting the best services for their money.”
Yingling sponsored two bills, House Bill 5522 and House Bill 4501, which are heralded by Republican and Democratic lawmakers alike as major wins for taxpayers. House Bill 5522 opens the books on local taxing bodies and their contracted vendors, requiring local governments and school districts with operating budgets of at least $1 million to maintain websites that provide access to documents about budgets, spending and operations. House Bill 4501 allows local government bodies with appointed boards to consolidate by voter referendum. Both measures passed with broad bipartisan support and await consideration by the Senate.
“If we are to truly turn our state around economically, then we must continue to support common sense policies that save taxpayers money and continue to weed out waste and abuse,” Yingling said. “Both measures will help keep local taxing bodies responsive to their taxpayers and will help restore taxpayer trust in their government.”
Yingling represents the 62nd District, which contains portions of Gages Lake, Grayslake, Gurnee, Hainesville, the Round Lake communities, Wauconda and Wildwood
Synopsis As Introduced
Amends the Open Meetings Act. Requires a unit of local government or school district with an operating budget of $1 million or more to maintain an Internet website and post to that website, for the current calendar or fiscal year, the following information: (1) information about elected and appointed officials; (2) notice of and materials prepared for meetings; (3) procedures for requesting information from the unit of local government or school district; (4) annual budget; (5) ordinances; (6) procedures to apply for building permits and zoning variances; (7) financial reports and audits; (8) information concerning employee compensation; (9) contracts with lobbying firms; (10) taxes and fees imposed by the unit of local government or school district; (11) rules governing the award of contracts; (12) bids and contracts worth $25,000 or more; (13) a debt disclosure report; and (14) public notices. Provides that any citizen who is a resident of the unit of local government or school district may bring a mandamus or injunction action to compel the unit of local government or school district to comply with the Internet posting requirements. Limits home rule powers. Amends the State Mandates Act to require implementation without reimbursement. Amends the Freedom of Information Act. Provides for a statutory exemption for any electronic copy of a record or information maintained on specified websites. Amends the Department of Central Management Services Law of the Civil Administrative Code of Illinois to make conforming changes. Amends the Notice By Publication Act. Provides that whenever an officer of a court, unit of local government, or school district is required to provide notice by publication in a newspaper, publishing website address to the document will be sufficient. Effective immediately
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