CHICAGO—To respond to recent allegations involving Springfield lawmakers and prevent future wrongdoing, State Senator Elgie R. Sims, Jr. has been named as the co-chair of a new joint legislative commission that will recommend changes to state ethics laws.

“The last several months have seen very troubling developments and the people of Illinois expect us to be and do better,” Sims said. “For the people to have faith in their government we must hold ourselves to the highest of standards, and when public officials do wrong, they should face the consequences. Those are the beliefs that will guide me as I serve on this commission.”

The Joint Commission on Ethics and Lobbying Reform was formed after the General Assembly passed legislation to create the commission to review the State Officials and Employees Ethics Act, the Illinois Governmental Ethics Act, the Lobbyist Registration Act, the Public Officers Prohibited Activities Act and the Ethics and Disclosure Article of the Procurement Code. The Commission will hold public hearings and issue a final report by March 31, 2020, giving the General Assembly enough time to act to implement reforms before the end of the upcoming spring session.

“It needs to be clear: our government must be held accountable and I look forward to this commission finding ways to prevent the situations which gave rise to recent developments,” Sims said. “I look forward to the opportunity to work with my colleagues in both chambers to come up with solutions which are in the best interest of our state and will make a measurable difference in improving the quality of our government.”

Category: Press Releases


Governor JB Pritzker, Representative Chris Welch and Senator Elgie Sims released the following joint statement after the NCAA announced they will allow student-athletes to be compensated for their names, images and likenesses:

“It’s clear that student-athletes deserve to have rights in a billion-dollar industry they helped build. After advocating for our legislation in Illinois, the NCAA took a welcome – though overdue – step forward to allow students to be compensated for their names and likenesses. We remain committed to being the voice of student-athletes in Illinois and will monitor this decision to ensure it is fully implemented. Today is a victory for student-athletes around the country who are fighting for fairness and equity, and we will continue to fight alongside you.”

Category: Press Releases

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SPRINGFIELD—A new law sponsored by Senator Elgie R. Sims Jr. (D-Chicago) will hold businesses that erroneously publish criminal history records accountable.

The plan requires companies that make errors on criminal history reports to correct them within five business days.

“Errors on criminal history reports can wreak havoc on a person’s life,” Sims said. “It can cost them a job or make it hard for them to find proper housing. This law will ensure companies that publish this information fix mistakes in a reasonable amount of time or face consequences for their negligence.”

Senate Bill 1599 expands the Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act so that a person or entity that publishes a person's criminal record information on a criminal history report that charges a fee for removal or correction of the information must correct any errors within five business days after notification of the error.

A person who faces harm as a result of a failure to correct published criminal record information within that time frame is entitled to damages of $100 per day, plus attorney's fees. 

“I am grateful to my colleagues and the governor for taking this issue seriously and helping to prevent loss of opportunities for people throughout the state,” Sims said. “This new law will help Illinoisans better protect their reputation and quickly correct any issues.”

SB 1599 was signed into law Tuesday and is effective Jan. 1, 2020.

Category: Press Releases

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SPRINGFIELD— A plan sponsored by State Senator Elgie R. Sims Jr. (D-Chicago) that aims to help lower the alarming maternal death rate in Illinois was signed into law Friday.

The plan will create a Diversity in Health Care Professions Task Force in an effort to develop strategies that will lead to increasing the number of minority health care professionals in Illinois.

“It is important that the health care field is a diverse one, as diversity improves the quality of the services and care provided,” Sims said. “Our health care providers are providing good, quality services; however, many times the health care needs of women, particularly black women and other women of color, aren’t taken seriously until it’s too late. This new law will help diversify the field of physicians and other health care professionals to ensure these mothers receive sound medical advice and the highest quality of care.”

The bill requires the task force to prepare annual summary reports and recommendations to the governor and legislature starting Dec. 1, 2020.

House Bill 2896 takes effect on Jan. 1, 2020.

Category: Press Releases

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