SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake) released the following statement Tuesday after the passage of the Fiscal Year 2022 budget:

“Following a year of financial turmoil for so many people, businesses, and schools, passing a comprehensive, balanced budget that helps bolster the middle class, encourages economic growth, and increases evidence-based education funding was of utmost importance.

“Despite the effects the pandemic had on the state’s bottom line, we were able to shift our focus to ensure we kept our promise to public schools to increase evidence-based funding and reduce tax burdens on local homeowners.

“The budget passed today is a win for everyone. I look forward to watching the funding from the budget help thousands of Illinoisans get back on their feet.”

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SPRINGFIELD – A longstanding champion of ethics reform in Illinois, State Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake) helped pass a measure to hold elected officials to the highest standards.

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“Ethics needs to be taken seriously and members of the General Assembly need to be held accountable,” Bush said. “This measure is about adopting ethics changes that will address the systemic culture within Illinois government.”

Senate Bill 539 makes a number of changes to current ethics laws, including prohibiting elected officials from lobbying other units of government for entities that lobby them, instituting a revolving door for executive branch elected officials and legislators becoming lobbyists and pro-rating salaries of General Assembly members who leave office prior to the end of their term, among other items.

Senator Bush has been a steadfast advocate of ethics-related measures since first entering the General Assembly in 2013. Most recently, she passed sweeping reforms targeting harassment and discrimination and included major reforms to the state’s ethics investigation process.

“Today’s move is just one step toward meaningful stride of restoring public trust in its elected officials,” Bush said. “Our work does not end until every person under the dome – from lawmakers to lobbyists – acts with morality and ethics.”

The measure passed has passed both chambers.

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SPRINGFIELD – To expand access to birth control – especially for women with limited financial resources – State Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake) passed a measure to allow people to receive contraceptives without visiting a doctor.

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“Birth control is a basic health care service and should be treated as such,” Bush said. “Providing greater access to contraceptives is providing a more equitable health care system.”

Many women struggle to access hormonal contraceptives, which historically have only been prescribed through a physician. They may not know where to go, or are unable to afford doctor’s appointments. Pharmacists, however, are typically much more accessible than a physician.

To give women easier, more affordable access to birth control, Bush championed a measure to allow pharmacists to issue hormonal contraceptives, including oral tablets, vaginal rings and topical patches.

Under the legislation, pharmacists who wish to participate would have to meet several educational requirements to provide them with the best tools to help patients complete a self-screening risk assessment. Once the assessment is finished, the pharmacist would provide counseling and education on all methods of contraception, then help the patient choose a form of birth control. 

Currently, 16 states and Washington, D.C. allow pharmacists to prescribe and dispense self-administered hormonal birth control.

“It’s simple: Birth control saves lives and prevents unplanned pregnancy,” Bush said. “Family planning and reproductive health care is a personal choice that should not be limited by economic or social status.”

Bush has been a steadfast advocate for women’s reproductive rights since first joining the General Assembly. She has spearheaded a number of measures to protect women’s health, including the monumental 2019 Reproductive Health Act, which repealed outdated abortion laws that have been blocked by the courts and ensured that reproductive health care is treated like all other health care and not as a crime.

House Bill 135 has passed both chambers.

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SPRINGFIELD – Illinois has more lead lines that bring drinking water into homes than any other state, but under the Lead Service Line Replacement Notification Act passed by Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake), that will change.

052620210397“Lead service lines are a health threat that poisons our children, undermines our residents’ confidence in our municipal government and costs billions of dollars,” Bush said. “This is a feasible and equitable path forward that would require all cities in Illinois to tackle a problem that we know harms Black and Latinx communities the most.”

Contained in House Bill 3739, the Lead Service Line Replacement Notification Act requires water utilities statewide to replace all lead service lines and creates a low-income water assistance program to help fund financial assistance and water projects that include lead pipe replacement.

As more cities across the country have seen increased amounts of lead in their drinking water – including Chicago, Aurora, Joliet, Cicero and Rockford – the health risk has also increased. Aside from keeping the harmful chemical out of people’s water, Bush’s measure would create up to 11,000 jobs and $115 billion in economic activity each year.

“We are finally on a path toward bringing safer drinking water into our communities,” Bush said. “Prioritizing this measure was prioritizing the health of all Illinoisans – and I appreciate my colleagues who stood by my side to pass this dire piece of legislation.”

The measure has now passed both chambers.

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Springfield Office:
218 Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
Phone: (217) 782-7353

District Office:
10 N. Lake St., Suite 112
Grayslake, IL 60030
Phone: (847) 548-5631