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Cook-Witter, Inc. 2018 General Election Guide is a review of the candidates who are running for office in this upcoming election.


Legislative Agenda Summaries – Illinois Society of Association Executives (ISAE)


Sexual Harassment


As of January 1, 2018, every individual who is a lobbyist and every association that contracts with a lobbyist must have a sexual harassment policy that includes specific elements, some of which may not already be in the association’s sexual harassment policy.


Every impacted association must have a policy that includes the following:


·         Prohibits sexual harassment;

·         Details how an individual can report;

·         Includes specific options for making confidential reports;

·         Prohibits retaliation for reporting;

·         Whistleblower protections;

·         Consequences for sexual harassment; and

·         Consequences for making a false report Prohibiting the Use of Public Funds at Conventions

House Bill 4246 (Rep. McSweeney R-52, Cary) bans the use of public funds to attend conventions, House Bill 4247 (Rep. McSweeney R-52, Cary) bans the use of public funds for sponsorships or booth exhibits at conventions, and House Bill 4248 (Rep. McSweeney R-52, Cary) combined the two proposals. The only proposal that obtained bipartisan support is House Bill 4247, which bans the use of public funds for sponsorships or booth exhibits at conventions; however, the sponsor eventually filed amendment language to exempt booths or sponsorships involving tourism or economic development before the bill stalled in the House.


Not-For-Profit Grading


House Bill 5479 (Rep. Dan Burke D-1, Chicago) establishes a grading system for entities incorporated under the Illinois General Not For Profit Corporation Act. The grading system methodology is meant for the evaluation of an entity’s performance with respect to the use of money received as donations and as grants from taxpayer sources, in particular, the amount of money used on administrative costs. Provides that corporations failing to meet a minimum score shall be deemed ineligible for grants made available through the expenditure of state funds. The legislation was assigned to the State Government Administration Committee, but did not pass move any further.


Personal Information Protection Act


Many ISAE members are subject to the Illinois Personal Information Protection Act as a result of maintaining personal information of their association membership, including log-in and password information for an online account. Among other things, the Act mandates specific responses from the association when there is a data breach.


Two competing pieces of legislation specify the period that an association would have to notify Illinois residents of a data breach. Rather than requiring notification in the most expedient time possible and without unreasonable delay, which is the current law, House Bill 4174 (Rep.

B.Wheeler R-64, Crystal Lake) requires notification within 48 hours and House Bill 4367 (Rep. B.Wheeler R-64, Crystal Lake) requires notification within 14 days after discovery of the breach. Neither bill was assigned to a substantive committee for a hearing, but privacy issues will continue to receive legislative attention.


Tourism Promotion


House Bill 4757 (Rep. Williams D-11, Chicago; Sen. Bennett D-52, Champaign) and Senate Bill 2899 (Sen. Haine D-56, Alton; Rep. Hoffman D-113, Belleville) initially mandated full funding for the Tourism Promotion Fund and use of the Local Tourism Fund for local tourism and convention bureaus. Following amendments to HB 4757, the legislation was modified with regard to a grant program for local tourism and convention bureaus by authorizing the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity to reserve up to 3% of total local tourism funds available for costs of administering the program to conduct audits of grants or conduct promotional activities. HB 4757 passed both chambers and is expected to be approved by the Governor.


Senate Bill 2528 (Sen. Murphy D-28, Des Plaines; Rep. Mussman R-56, Schaumburg) and House Bill 4990 (Rep. Crespo D-44, Streamwood; Sen. Murphy D-28, Des Plaines) make Tourism Promotion Fund money available for prior and future contracts regarding local government convention centers through June 2022. SB 2528 stalled in the House, but HB 4990 passed both chambers and is expected to be approved by the Governor.


For members that utilize amenities or host events in DuPage County, Senate Bill 2483 (Sen. T.Cullerton D-23, Villa Park; Rep. Olsen R-81, Downers Grove) provides that not less than 75% of a DuPage County municipality’s hotel tax shall be used to promote tourism within that municipality. The legislation moved through the Senate with bipartisan support, but stalled in the House chamber.


Open Meetings Act & Freedom of Information Act


Late in the legislative session, Senate Amendment 1 was filed on Senate Bill 36 (Sen. Tom Cullerton D-23, Villa Park). The amendment adds certain entities to the Open Meetings Act, including for-profit and not-for profit tourism organizations that receive public funds as well as convention or civic center boards located in any county (rather than in counties that are contiguous to the Mississippi River with populations of more than 250,000 but less than 300,000). If the amendment is approved, the legislation would make similar changes concerning for-profit and not-for-profit tourism boards or organizations in the Freedom of Information Act. SB 36, Senate Amendment 1 further requires all not-for profit tourism organizations to create a website, and requires any not-for-profit tourism organization receiving public funds to disclose all expenses and employee salary information on its website. The amendment was not approved before the end of session and the legislation did not move any further.

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