Dear Neighbor:

While summer in the 12th District means baseball games at Wrigley Field, al fresco dining, and trips to the Lincoln Park Zoo or one of our many local beaches, summer can also bring dangerously hot temperatures. Take a minute to read the City of Chicago's extreme heat tips and remember that you can call 311 to request a well-being check for an elderly friend, neighbor, or family member.

On Monday I will be co-hosting the last of three seminars for condominium associations, facilitated by John H. Bickley III of Kovitz Shifrin and Nesbit. These seminars have been incredibly helpful to condominium associations of all sizes, and Monday's seminar will cover smoking issues, collecting foreclosures and assessments, and rules and regulations. Monday's free seminar will run from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at the St. Vincent dePaul Center at 2145 North Halsted, and all are welcome to join. Please register here if you plan to attend.

The legislature adjourned on May 31 after finishing work on a number of important issues, including the state budget for the FY 13 fiscal year beginning July 1, 2012. Pension reform negotiations stalled in the final days of the spring legislative session, and it is possible that legislators are called back to Springfield this summer for a special session to debate a new proposal. I have included a brief roundup of the state budget, Medicaid, pensions, and other legislative issues in this e-newsletter. As always, I welcome your feedback and thoughts as I continue to work through the summer to prepare for the fall veto session.

Please do not hesitate to contact me or a member of my staff if we can ever be of assistance to you or your neighbors.

Very truly yours,

Sara Feigenholtz
State Representative
12th District

  • In the News
  • State Budget
  • Legislative Session Roundup
  • Condominium Association Seminar Series
  • Senior Health & Resource Fair
  • Satellite Office Hours
  • World Elder Abuse Awareness Day
  • Celebrate "Green Week" with Alderman Smith!
  • Community Events

  • State Budget

    Based on the projected revenues, the General Assembly approved a package of budget bills for the upcoming fiscal year beginning July 1, 2012 to preserve vital services while balancing our checkbook. The governor is currently considering these bills.

    Ultimately, the spending plan adopted by the General Assembly was $600 million less than the governor's proposed budget and allowed us to dedicate $1.3 billion to paying off backlogged bills. Making our full pension payments, dedicating significant funds to the state debt, maximizing revenue from federal matching funds, and developing line-item budgets that emphasize efficiencies are helping us put Illinois back on the right fiscal path.

    Legislative Session Roundup

    Pension Reform: Pension reform measures stalled in the last days of the legislative session and negotiations between the governor and legislative leaders will continue through the summer. It is possible that, if an agreement is reached, the legislature could be called into a special session to consider a new proposal. I will keep you updated as this issue develops.

    Legislative Pay Freeze: For the fourth year in a row, I voted to take 12 unpaid furlough days and block pay raises for elected officials. If we are to ask Illinois families to sacrifice during these difficult economic times, we must be willing to do the same and lead by example. In addition to furlough days, House Bill 3188 eliminates cost of living increases in FY13 for members of the General Assembly, constitutional officers, and state's attorneys. The bill was approved by the General Assembly and will be considered by the governor.

    Ending Legislative "Perks": The legislature approved House Bill 3810, which I co-sponsored, to eliminate the controversial General Assembly Scholarship Program that has allowed lawmakers to award eight 1-year tuition waivers annually to students living in their districts. The program became ripe with abuse over the years as there has been very little regulation or oversight to the program. I have not participated in this program in several years because it has never been funded and costs universities and taxpayers up to $13 million each year. The bill was approved by the General Assembly and will be considered by the governor. More information on financial aid opportunities for students can be found on my website.

    Corporate Flexibility: My legislation to help entrepreneurs who seek to advance their business' triple bottom line of people, planet, and profit won the approval of the General Assembly and will be sent to the governor. Senate Bill 2897 creates a new, voluntary Illinois corporate form - a benefit corporation - that gives entrepreneurs the flexibility to build socially and environmentally sustainable businesses. Smart businesses that recognize both social profits as well as shareholder profits will be the companies that thrive and drive long-term economic growth in the 21st Century. The bill was approved by the General Assembly and will be considered by the governor.

    Law Enforcement Eavesdropping: Currently, Illinois law imposes on any resident a felony penalty (punishable by up to 15 years in jail) to audio record a law enforcement officer in public, including recording unprofessional behavior. The House passed Senate Bill 1808, which I co-sponsored, to overturn this ban and permit the recording of officers performing a public duty in a public space. The bill is awaiting concurrence by the Senate.

    Small Business Healthcare Cooperatives: I co-sponsored Senate Bill 2885 to make it easier for individuals and small businesses to access affordable health insurance by allowing them to voluntarily form non-profit cooperatives. The bill was approved by the General Assembly and will be considered by the governor.

    Gaming: Last year, the General Assembly approved a gaming expansion bill that was opposed by the governor. This year, the General Assembly passed a new gaming plan in Senate Bill 1849 that would allow for the construction of a Chicago casino (and four others located in suburban Cook County, Rockford, Park City, and Danville), increase the number of positions at existing riverboats (although less than the original bill), and strengthen oversight of the Gaming Board. Unlike the legislation passed last year, this bill does not include gaming at airports or the state fair. The bill was approved by the General Assembly and will be considered by the governor.

    Internet Dating Safety: It is important that laws keep up with the times - as internet dating gains popularity, we have to make sure our laws are keeping up with the trend. Senate Bill 2545 helps to protect the safety of online daters by requiring dating websites to explicitly state whether or not their users undergo background checks. The bill was approved by the General Assembly and will be considered by the governor.

    Funding Rape Crisis Centers: I sponsored House Bill 1645 to provide a revenue source to sexual assault and rape crisis centers, services, prevention, and treatment. The bill creates a surcharge for strip clubs that offer or allow alcohol and gives club owners two fee options: pay a flat fee based on annual gross receipts or pay a $3 per patron fee. No establishments in the city of Chicago are affected by this bill. House Bill 1645 was approved by the General Assembly and will be considered by the governor.

    Healthcare for Low-Income Families: I co-sponsored Senate Bill 3261 to require hospitals to provide medically necessary care to any patient with an income of 200% of the federal poverty level or less. Most hospitals provide free or heavily subsidized care, or charity care, far beyond this threshold, and this measure will help to ensure that the neediest residents can get the health care they need.

    SMART Act: This week, the governor signed the SMART Act, or Medicaid reform, into law. Senate Bill 2840 reduces Medicaid spending by $1.6 billion. Further details on the bill can be found in my previous e-newsletter. The governor also signed into law the cigarette tax increase (to bring the total state tax on cigarettes to $1.98 per pack) and the Cook County waiver that will allow thousands of Cook County residents to enroll in Medicaid to to bring in federal matching dollars currently untapped by the Cook County hospital system.

    Condominium Association Seminar Series


    Senior Health & Resource Fair

    Senior Health & Resource Fair, in partnership with Weiss Memorial Hospital
    Thursday, June 28
    12:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
    Weiss Memorial Hospital, WISE Senior Center, 4700 North Marine

    Highlights of this free event include information and services from:
  • Zumba classes
  • Health screenings
  • AP Lifeline/Relief Medical
  • Asian Human Services
  • Illinois Attorney General
  • Bethany Retirement Community
  • Brightview Care Center
  • Center on Halsted
  • Chicagoland Methodist Senior Services
  • Cook County Commissioner Bridget Gainer
  • Cook City Sherriff's Office
  • Cremation Society
  • Illinois Department on Aging
  • Kids in Danger
  • Mid-America Care
  • The Levy Center
  • Illinois State Treasurer's Office
  • Truman College
  • VetNet
  • Walgreens
  • White Crane Wellness Center
  • Illinois Citizens for Better Care
  • Illinois Department of Insurance
  • Lincoln Park Village
  • Alderman James Cappleman
  • Regional Transit Authority
  • Glen Healthcare Network
  • National Kidney Foundation of Illinois
  • Special musical performance by the Time of Your Life Players

  • Zumba Gold Class Schedule, sponsored by Glen Healthcare Network:
    12:30 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.
    1:30 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.
    2:30 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.

    Check my website for the latest updates!

    Satellite Office Hours

    *Please note the time change for 46th Ward satellite office hours.
    Satellite Office Hours/

    World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

    June 15, 2012 marks World Elder Abuse Awareness Day. Take a minute to learn the signs of abuse and ways to prevent it, and encourage others to do the same.

    The National Center on Elder Abuse says neglect is the most common form of abuse and warning signs can include lack of basic hygiene or clean clothing, a cluttered or dirty home, lack of medical aids, and untreated bed sores. Financial abuse and exploitation, emotional abuse, and physical abuse are other equally dangerous kinds of abuse.

    Creating a strong social network of family, friends, neighbors, and other senior citizens can prevent the isolation that often fosters abuse and neglect. Many local churches, synagogues, libraries, hospitals, and not-for-profit organizations run programs aimed at building a sense of community among seniors. The NCEA also recommends having income deposited directly into your checking account and even utilizing a professional money management service. Having an aging plan in place - wills, trusts, or a power of attorney - early helps to ensure that only someone trusted has access to important financial decisions.

    If you suspect elder abuse, exploitation, or neglect, you can report it to the state's 24-hour Elder Abuse Hotline at 866-800-1409. More information on elder abuse and ways that residents can help spread the word can be found on NCEA's website at www.ncea.aoa.gov.

    Celebrate "Green Week" with Alderman Smith!

    Green Week

    Community Events

    46th Ward Town Hall
    Wednesday, June 20
    7:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
    4750 North Sheridan

    The 46th Ward will be holding a Town Hall on Environmental Sustainability. The Town Hall will discuss various techniques that save energy and money in the home, and also environmental initiatives taking place in the city. Representatives from the Institute of Cultural Affairs, the Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance and the City of Chicago Department of Water Management will provide presentations and answer questions. Light refreshments will be provided. For questions or to RSVP contact Dana at Dana@james46.org or (773) 878-4646.

    Lincoln Park Chamber of Commerce, Lakeview Chamber, and Roscoe Village Chamber, Rooftop Party & Networking Event
    Wednesday, June 20
    5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
    Lakeshore Sport + Fitness, 1320 West Fullerton

    Connect with fellow business owners from across the city as the Lincoln Park Chamber of Commerce, Lakeview Chamber, and Roscoe Village Chamber partner once again for this annual June multi-chamber networking event. Enjoy cocktails, hors d'oeuvres and live music set atop the beautiful, newly renovated rooftop deck at Lakeshore Sport and Fitness in the heart of Lincoln Park! Tickets are $30 if RSVPed and paid for before June 18 and $40 at the door. For more information contact the Lincoln Park Chamber of Commerce at 773.880.5200 or visit the LPCC website here.

    Weiss Memorial Hospital, Diabetic Day
    Thursday, June 21
    11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
    Weiss Memorial Hospital, 4646 North Marine

    Check your blood sugar, consult with endocrinologist Dr. Renee Schickler, taste healthy foods, and more. Call 773-564-5666 for more information.

    Movie in the Park, "Chip-Wrecked'
    Sunday, June 24
    Begins at dusk
    Hawthorne School, 3319 North Clifton

    Summertime is here, and that means it is time for outdoor movies in the park! Round up the kids and join us for these three blockbuster hits, proudly sponsored by the Central Lakeview Merchants Association! All movies start at dusk.

    43rd Ward Bike Ride
    Saturday, June 30
    8:30 a.m.
    Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, 2430 North Cannon

    Alderman Smith is concluding our inaugural Green Week with a 43rd Ward Bike Ride. Registration starts at 8:30 a.m. and the ride starts at 9:00 a.m. The 3 mile ride is a tour through the 43rd Ward and starts and ends at the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum. Children are welcome but please note the group will be riding with traffic. It is very important to have an accurate number of riders in advance, so please RSVP to Andrew at andrew@ward43.org if you are interested.

    In the News

    Windy City Times
    May 29, 2012
    Illinois Medicaid changes could harm those with HIV

    Galesburg Register-Mail
    May 30, 2012
    Budget showdown looms between House and Senate

    Chicago Sun-Times
    May 31, 2012
    Strip club tax goes to Quinn's desk

    Chillicothe Times Bulletin
    May 31, 2012
    Lt. Gov. comments on strip club surcharge

    News Gazette
    May 31, 2012
    'Strip club tax' sent to governor

    May 31, 2012
    Ill. lawmakers pass strip club tax

    May 31, 2012
    Strip club tax bill awaits Governor Quinn's signature

    Morris Daily Herald
    June 1, 2012
    Lawmakers vote to tax strip clubs, loosen campaign finance rules

    Lakeview Newspaper
    June 2012
    Feigenholtz Legislation to Keep Day Care Centers Open Passes House

    Lakeview Newspaper
    June 2012
    Feigenholtz and Williams Hosting YMCA Women's Health and Resource Fair

    Lakeview Newspaper
    June 2012
    Feigenholtz Collecting Cell Phones for Soldiers During Military Appreciation Month

    Medill Reports
    June 5, 2012
    Women's health: A menu of options

    Progress Illinois
    June 5, 2012
    Not a Misprint: Homeless Services Expanded in New State Budget

    June 6, 2012
    "shameful reality . . . misplaced priorities"

    Windy City Times
    June 6, 2012
    Letter to the Editor: Family Affair

    Chicago Pride
    June 11, 2012
    Rep. Feigenholtz, Central Lakeview Merchants Association host listening session

    Decatur Tribune
    June 14, 2012
    Governor Quinn Signs Law to Save Medicaid

    June 14, 2012
    Feigenholtz updates residents on Illinois Medicaid reform, now signed by Quinn

    Chicago Tribune
    June 15, 2012
    Quinn says Medicaid cuts were needed to prevent collapse

    phone: (773) 296-4141