Updated: Jan 2, 2020
HB4247 PROHIBITS THE USE OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT FUNDS FOR EXHIBITION SPACE AT CONFERENCES AND CONVENTIONS AND DRAMATICALLY LIMITS IMPORTANT ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT ACTIVITIES
We have been closely following a trio of bills introduced by Rep. David McSweeney (52d Dist., Cook, McHenry, Lake Counties) concerning the use of public funds by local governments for attendance and exhibits at state, regional, and national conferences. For a variety of reasons, these bills will have a dramatic affect on governmental operations and innovation. Local government officials regularly attend conferences to learn from other government officials and people who work with government. Often, these interactions lead to important innovations that make the operations of local government more efficient, effective, and responsive.
However, only one of the three bills is progressing through the General Assembly. HB4247, as amended, specifically targets and prohibits the use of local government funds to pay for exhibit space at conferences. This bill has obtained significant bipartisan support and had a second reading in the House on March 8, 2018, with a short and uneventful debate. Thank you to everyone that submitted an online Witness Slip. There were a total of 147 Witness Slips that opposed the bill, many of them APA-IL planners!
Local governments routinely like to have exhibits as conferences, such as the International Council of Shopping Centers Chicago Deal Making Conference, to advertise available development opportunity sites and connect with retail developers, promoting economic development goals and objectives of not only their communities, but more broadly the state as a whole.
HB4247 will limit the ability of local governments to engage in important economic development activities typically conducted at conventions or gatherings of personnel, by prohibiting use of local government funds for display, information, and entertainment space at conventions and gatherings of personnel has gathered several co-sponsors and, as of now, has the greatest likelihood of getting a House floor vote soon.
Recommendation: Immediately Contact your state legislators to Oppose HB4247, as amended.
Who should I contact? How do I find my legislators?
To find your elected officials, go to the Illinois State Board of Elections website and search for your legislators by your home or work address. Some legislators will have their email listed on the results page, for others please go to their websites and find their "contact" button or link.
Call Rep. McSweeney’s (R) 52nd District’s Springfield office at 217-782-4247 or email him and let him know you oppose HB4247.
Contact any of the Bill's House Sponsors: Rep. David McSweeney (R) 52nd District - Allen Skillicorn (R) 66th District, Grant Wehrli (R) 41st District, Jonathan Carroll (D) 57th District, Martin J. Moylan (D) 55th District, John Connor (D) 85th District, Katie Stuart (D) 112th District, Deb Conroy (D) 46th District, Sue Scherer (D) 96th District, Sam Yingling (D) 62nd District, Monica Bristow (D) 111th District, Natalie Phelps Finnie (D) 118th District and Jerry Costello, II (D) 116th District.