Rep. Wehrli’s Legislative News: Veto Session, Ethics Reform & More

More needed after meager ethics reform vote.

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On the first day of veto session at the end of October, amidst ongoing public corruption investigations entangling multiple layers of Illinois government, I led a bipartisan group of legislators in a call for comprehensive ethics reform.

As a first step in the process of restoring public trust, I called for HB 361 to finally be taken up by the House. I filed the bill all the way back in January (along with others never given a House hearing) to increase the fines legislators face for engaging in numerous restricted activities and for violations of legislator rules of conduct. We also called for the creation of a completely bipartisan state ethics task force for further action.

While we were holding that press conference, the news of the latest corruption investigation involving the now former Rep. Luis Arroyo became public and rightly set off a long overdue firestorm demanding reform. By the next week, several more bills had been filed that directly target the corrupt behavior that led to the investigations of Arroyo and others over the past few months.

However, instead of any of the numerous bills filed months ago being considered, or even any of the several recently filed with bipartisan support, none were. We got House Joint Resolution 93 and Senate Bill 1639 at the 11th hour.

While I supported the legislation because a failure to take any action to address Illinois’ grossly lacking ethics laws would have been legislative malpractice, House Joint Resolution 93 and Senate Bill 1639 were meager improvements at best. Only after being reluctantly forced to take action, did the leaders of the majority party finally allow something to happen. However, and unsurprisingly, not only did they drop this on House members at the 11th hour, but they gutted or wholly ignored simple, common sense and bipartisan legislative solutions we had already offered.

The fight for ethics reform is not over and nor should it be. To actually restore a slim sense of public faith in the General Assembly, a lot more better happen in the spring, if not sooner.  Read More Here.


Video: The House should not have adjourned.

As the House moved to adjourn the veto session, I called on the House to stay in session and take further steps to address Illinois’ lax ethics laws as a dark cloud of corruption continues to hang over the state Capitol.  Watch the Video Here.


Appointed to Offshore Wind Energy Task Force.

Concern for the environment is not a partisan issue, and it is an honor to be selected for service on this important task force to evaluate policy and economic options to facilitate the development of offshore wind energy. I look forward to working on this bipartisan, comprehensive panel to produce legislative recommendations to further develop Illinois’ offshore wind energy.  Read More Here.


Story time at the library.

Join me for family story time at the Naperville Public Library on Wednesday, November 20 at 10:30 a.m. This 30-minute program of stories, songs and fun activities is for children of all ages. A parent or adult caregiver must attend with the child.  Read More Here.


Upcoming seminar to earn GATA certification.

I am partnering with fellow State Representatives Amy Grant (R–Wheaton) and Deanne Mazzochi (R–Elmhurst) to co-host a Grant Accountability and Transparency Act (GATA) Certification Seminar on Thursday, November 21. The seminar is designed to help local governments and non-profits who want to apply for state or federal grants obtain the required certification. It will take place from 1:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Naperville City Hall in the Council Chambers located at 400 S. Eagle Street in Naperville.  Read More Here.


Naperville launches ‘Caring Hands’ emergency response program.

From the City of Naperville: Residents who may require special assistance during an emergency are encouraged to consider providing Naperville first responders details of their specific needs before an emergency situation through the new Caring Hands program.  Read More Here.


Welcoming the Consul General of India to the Capitol.

It was great to welcome the Consul General of India, Shri Sudakar Dalela, to the state Capitol last week. Illinois and India have a wonderful relationship and the shared democratic values between our state and India are important to the continued growth of the more than $140 billion in bilateral trade between the U.S. and India.  Read More Here.


Solar rebate available for Naperville homeowners.

From the City of Naperville: The City of Naperville Electric Utility is offering up to a $1,000 rebate to homeowners who install either a roof-mounted solar energy system or a solar water heating system. The rebates are for projects that are installed between October 2019 and December 2020.  Read More Here.