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This week in the House, Representative Steve Andersson spoke in favor of a mental health bill, and called for more awareness on the issue of mental illness.

Andersson voiced his support for Senate Bill 565, which would require age-appropriate developmental and social and emotional screenings to be included as part of a standard health examination. He further discussed the importance of mental health, and the opportunity this bill would have to promote the early diagnosis of mental illness.

Andersson urged legislators to not only support the legislation, but to also recognize mental illness and the growing impact it has. He noted that as many as one in five children under that age of 18 has or will have a serious mental illness. Yet, despite that staggering number, the average delay between onset and diagnosis of a mental illness is ten years. Andersson supports SB 565 as he believes the earlier mental illness can be identified and diagnosed the better chance that child will be given.

“Mental illness is real. Too much time is wasted after the onset of mental illness and before assistance or treatment is given,” said Andersson. “This bill provides for early intervention, and gives parents a shot at helping their children—so they can know the signs, catch mental health early on and get the treatment they need as soon as possible.”

Andersson supports efforts to bring more awareness to mental illness, and advocates for the support of mental health initiatives like SB 565.

The bill is currently in its third reading in the House. More of Rep. Andersson’s remarks on the legislation can be seen in the video below.

 

Tonight, House Democrats passed a budget bill over $7 billion underfunded. The 500 plus page spending bill was presented last minute, giving House Republicans only hours to review the bill prior to voting.

Senate Bill 2048 appropriates roughly $14 billion that with court order, continuing appropriations, and consent decrees would push state spending over $40 billion.

In addition to overspending, the measure would push income taxes to over 5.5 percent for a 47 percent tax hike. Representative Andersson (R-Geneva) stood with his House Republican colleagues to express disappointment and anger at the broken process that resulted in the $40 billion spending bill—that which 63 voting in favor moves on for further confirmation.

“This spending bill will nearly double our state’s current unpaid bills, and is money our state simply does not have,” said Andersson. “Above all, there was no dialogue involved in this process and we were given no time to review the bill before voting. Debate was cut off and required procedures were denied. Tonight’s debate was nothing short of illegal and any momentum gained from the working groups and the progress being made among the rank and file was all but ruined.”

With the budget impasse nearing its year-long mark, compromise has yet to be achieved. Andersson still remains hopeful that a reasonable solution can be still be met.
Representative Andersson has launched his second annual summer reading program, Ahoy Matey, for all students in K-5th grades in the 65th District. Participating students must read 10 books of their choosing, and return their completed reading lists to Rep. Andersson’s district office by August 21st to be invited to a special recognition party in the fall.

Last year’s program had over 60 children participate, and Andersson hopes to continue the momentum of reading success. Last September, Rep. Andersson hosted the children and their families at a pizza party where each child received a special certificate of recognition and he is looking forward to doing the same this fall.

“I am excited to hold my second summer reading program to promote continued learning during the summer,” said Andersson. “It is so important to keep kids excited about reading in the months off school, and I hope this program will do just that. Ahoy Matey encourages reading in a fun way, to really engage the students and drive their love of reading.”

For more information on the program or to request a reading program brochure, contact Rep. Andersson’s District Office at (630) 456-5460.
Representative Steve Andersson passed House Resolution 824, which commemorates the 25th anniversary of the Illinois Brass Band, a 30 member British style brass band. The group has been extremely successful over its tenure, and is a six time national champion of the North American Brass Band Association.

Over the years, The Illinois Brass Band has presented dozens of concerts indoors and out, and has also produced six recordings to date. Supported in part by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, The Illinois Brass Band is a 501(c)(3) recognized organization.

Representative Steve Andersson and The State of Illinois commemorate Saturday, June 11, 2016, as Illinois Brass Band Day — celebrating their 25th Anniversary hitting all the right notes since 1991!

State Representative Steve Andersson passed Senate Bill 2593 in the House today. This bill amends the Property Tax Code and was originally filed in the Senate by Senator Karen McConnaughay (R-St. Charles).

Andersson was the Chief sponsor of this legislation in the House. The bill provides for property tax appeal petitions to be filed electronically, and allows the decision by the Property Tax Appeal board to also be delivered electronically to the applicant.

Andersson presented the bill in the House on the grounds that it would promote a more efficient process, and allow residents to more easily file their appeals. “This bill provides for a faster process, and cuts down on the paper waste,” said Andersson. “Previously, the only way to file a petition was by mail. This bill will allow petitions to be sent by mail or electronically. It is an added option for residents, so they can choose to file by paper or electronically—and allows residents better access to the property tax appeal system.”

Senate Bill 2593 passed in the Senate with 112 voting for the measure, and now having passed in both chambers will move forward for final confirmation.
Today a human services appropriations bill was presented and debated in the House. This measure, Senate Bill 2038, provides $700 million in immediately available funds for human service providers across the state.

Human service providers provide a variety of vital services in Illinois, and this bill will provide the necessary funding to help keep them functioning. Rep. Steve Andersson (R-Geneva) voted for the bill.

“This is a positive step forward,” said Andersson. “This bill provides essential services for our residents, and is the next necessary step in the budgeting process. While there is much more to accomplish, this funding measure will help prevent agency closures, and keep vital services running and available to those in our state that need them the most. This is not a perfect or permanent solution, but is progress.”

Today the bill passed in the House with 111 voting in favor of it.
Representative Steve Andersson was selected to participate in the 2016 Emerging Leaders Program at the University of Virginia.

The program is an annual event, and a collaborative effort of the State Legislative Leaders Foundation and the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business Administration. This summer, 50 legislators from across the nation will come together through this program, and participate in challenging classroom discussions—ones that seek to inspire legislators to meet challenges and responsibilities with confidence, understanding and vigor.

Since its start, over 500 legislators have benefitted from the program and have continued their public service careers, even moving to position of leadership. Rep. Andersson is looking forward to attending the upcoming program. “I am honored to be selected for this great opportunity,” said Andersson. “I hope to gain insight and perspective in meeting and working with fellow state legislators from the 47 others states. I am excited to have been selected and look forward to this summer’s event.”

The program is made possible through grants from Advance America, Comcast, Entertainment Software Association and Walmart, and this year will take place from July 11-14th.