(SPRINGFIELD) Illinois has taken a step toward becoming the 37th state to ratify the 1972 federal Equal Rights Amendment. The State Senate voted 43 to 12 yesterday on a resolution to add the Equal Rights Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The amendment guarantees equal rights for all citizens, regardless of sex and it needs 38 states to ratify it in order to change the U.S. Constitution. Illinois was one of 15 states not to ratify the amendment before a 1982 deadline. While the action will not change Illinois law, it will provide protections for women nationally, plus it will likely spark new debate in Washington, D.C. where Congress has the power to consider the validity of state ratifications any time after the deadline. The state resolution now advances to the State House of Representatives for consideration there within the week.
(SPRINGFIELD) Illinois lawmakers sued for sexual harassment cannot use tax money to pay settlements under a bill that flew through the State House yesterday on a 113 to 0 vote. The measure will try to prevent what’s been disclosed about some lawmakers since the #MeToo anti-harassment movement caught fire last fall. Misconduct allegations fell on a number of prominent men in entertainment, the media, and politics, and it was revealed that some members of Congress had used the public’s money to settle complaints. The bill will ensure that personal funds must be used in harassment cases. The bill moves to the State Senate.
(SPRINGFIELD) The nation’s tax deadline is now less than a week away. Both the Internal Revenue Service and Illinois Department of Revenue are reminding taxpayers to file their tax returns electronically to make sure everything gets submitted in time. For more information on last minute filing and/or other details on state taxes, go online at www.tax.illinois.gov or if any federal questions, logon at www.irs.gov.