Justice for Breonna Taylor Graphic

CHICAGO— Senator Elgie R. Sims, Jr. (D-Chicago) released the following statement after news Wednesday that a grand jury charged ex-police officer Brett Hankison on three counts of wanton endangerment and did not charge two Louisville police officers, Jonathan Mattingly and Myles Cosgrove who also fired weapons in the shooting that killed Breonna Taylor:

“Today’s decision was disappointing to say the least. The charges fall incredibly short of holding these bad actors accountable and just add to the devastation felt by Breonna Taylor’s family and our communities.

“The fact that none of the officers was charged directly for Breonna’s death makes it clear that our justice system does not equally value Black life, and that has to change.

“We must not allow our anger and frustration to deter us from seeking justice and equity. It is vital that we remain peaceful to effect change and honor Breonna’s memory. I will continue to work with my colleagues and community leaders until our justice system provides justice to all people.”

Category: Press Releases

road work

CHICAGO—As a result of an infrastructure package backed by Senator Elgie R. Sims Jr. (D-Chicago), the 17th District will see $258 million in infrastructure projects during the six-year span of the plan, with $24 million in road improvements set to begin in the next year.   

“This is a meaningful investment to preserve local roads and bridges,” Sims said. “We are taking a responsible approach to not only address safety and traffic issues, but to prevent them before they arise.”  

The largest project will be overlaying work in Crete and Beecher. It will cost $5.5 million and involve repairing deficiencies and resurfacing roads. 

Another $4.3 million project will span Lynwood and Glenwood. It will include widening the road, bi-directing a left turn lane and improvements to help people with disabilities.

Burnham will see $1.6 million worth of bridge repairs and maintenance.  

A $1.2 million project will also be done in Burnham and Calumet City. It will include surface maintenance at the right time (SMART) overlaying work, which is resurfacing an area that has previously had an overlay before major repairs are needed. According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, if it is done at the right time, it can prevent serious distress. This project will also involve improvements for people with disabilities. 

"Aside from making our roads safer, these projects will provide quality jobs and help people recover from the financial impact of the pandemic,” Sims said.  

Passed in 2019, the historic and bipartisan Rebuild Illinois plan is the largest capital program in state history. In its first year, the program improved 1,706 miles of roadway, and repaired or reconstructed 128 bridges across Illinois.  

IDOT’s complete Multi-Year Plan can be found on its website

Category: Press Releases

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CHICAGO—State Senator Elgie R. Sims, Jr. (D-Chicago) released the following statement in response to 79 people being shot in Chicago over the July 4th weekend, including two children:

“We should not have to live in a society where our young people, or anyone for that matter, have to fear for their safety.

“As a community, we must stand together to ensure that we are protecting our young people and providing the resources to make sure that individuals are held accountable.

“The safest areas aren’t the communities with the most police. The safest communities are the ones with the most resources. Where you find under-resourced communities is typically where you see the gun violence happening.

“I plan to work with residents and leaders on all levels to increase investments and work to stop the rampant gun violence in our communities.”

Category: Press Releases
sims on floor
 
CHICAGO—The minimum wage in Illinois increased to $10 on Wednesday because of a 2019 law co-sponsored by State Senator Elgie R. Sims Jr. (D-Chicago). 
 
“We are seeing many years' worth of efforts to help working families finally come to fruition,” Sims said. “I take pride in our work here in Illinois to provide a wage that matches the rising cost of a family’s basic needs.” 
 
The state’s minimum wage increases to $10 per hour July 1, the second in a series of increases required by the law passed last year. That legislation requires the wage to increase by $1 on Jan. 1 of each year going forward until it reaches $15 per hour in 2025. 
 
Sims also disagreed with business leaders who have sought to delay or repeal the law because of the pandemic and its associated economic downturn. 
 
“Those earning minimum wage haven’t seen an increase since 2010,” Sims said. “I understand that this is a difficult time for businesses, but we cannot continue to make working families wait for a pay raise. This is already long overdue.” 
 
The law raises the minimum wage statewide, though some communities, including Cook County and Chicago, have set higher local minimum wages – measures which Sims supports. 
Category: Press Releases

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