ILLINOIS
CHOOSE LIFE

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Status Report Archive


Status of Legislation

February, 2004  --  Choose Life license plate bills were introduced in both the Illinois House and Senate on February 6th.  Both bills were referred to the Rules Committee of each chamber respectively.  Progress for either bill requires that the Rules Committee assign the bill to a committee for consideration and hearings.

May, 2003  --  Choose Life license plates have been stymied in Illinois for 2003 through the actions of Illinois House and Senate Democratic leadership that prevented HB10 and SB1502 from receiving committee approval.  New bills will be submitted in the Illinois House and Senate during the legislative session that begins in January 2004.

March, 2003  --  HB10, to establish Choose Life license plates, was stopped in the Illinois House of Representatives on March 13, 2003 when it failed to receive approval from the State Government Administration Committee. SB1502, an equivalent bill introduced in the Illinois Senate, had a similar fate when the Health & Human Services Committee voted against it.  These actions will prevent Choose Life license plates from becoming a reality in Illinois during 2003. 

February, 2003  --  HB10 was introduced in the Illinois House of Representatives on January 8, 2003 to establish Choose Life license plates.   After some clarification on wording issues, Rep. Randy Hultgren became chief sponsor of HB10 and has submitted an amendment to change the wording of HB10 to reflect SB2426 from last session.  The Hultgren Amendment needs to be adopted.  HB10 has been assigned to a sub-committee by Jack Franks, chairperson of the State Government Administration Committee in an attempt to kill it.  SB1502 has been introduced in the Illinois Senate on February 20, 2003 to establish Choose Life license plates.  If it remains held in the Rules Committee, that would kill it.  Either bill, if passed, can make Choose Life plates a reality in Illinois. 

December, 2002  --  SB2426, a bill to enact Choose Life license plates in Illinois, was sponsored in the 92nd General Assembly by Senator Patrick O'Malley.  This bill was not released from the Senate Rules Committee in the Fall veto session that ended in December 2002.  This ends any chance for it to be passed in this legislative session so it will be re-introduced in the 93rd General Assembly that opened in January 2003.  Jim Finnegan observed, "Disappointing, but not the least surprising or intimidating to our effort.  I had never felt we had much of a chance this year.  Dan (Proft) and Senator O'Malley are correct in stating that the work we all have done will stand us in great stead going into 2003."  Jim added, "We have a strong story to tell.  As Senator O'Malley has pointed out, it will be extremely difficult for anyone to argue against adoption.  None of us expected the usual suspects such as NOW, PP and ACLU to stay silent.  By the same token, everywhere they have attacked  this noble effort they have lost in court, the latest in the U.S. Supreme Court, allowing the sale of Choose Life plates in the state of Lousiana."

Press Conferences

February 25, 2004 -- Choose Life License Plate Press Conference

ILLINOIS CHOOSE LIFE, INC. NEWS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE February 24, 2004                         

Contact: Dan Proft  (630) 464-1032

General Assembly again presented with opportunity to  "Choose Life" Specialty License Plate legislation introduced in House and Senate

Springfield, IL.Forces that seek to promote adoption as a loving option are once again calling on the General Assembly to create a specialty license plate that Illinois citizens may choose to purchase for their vehicles, a portion of the proceeds from which will go to support adoption service providers in Illinois.

Legislation has been introduced in both chambers to authorize the creation of such a specialty license plate thanks to the leadership of State Representative Randy Hultgren (R-Wheaton) and State Senator Kirk Dillard (R-Downers Grove).  Hultgren is the lead sponsor of House Bill 5883 and
Sen. Dillard is the leader sponsor of Senate Bill 3089.

    Press Conference Details:
When:       Wednesday, February 25, 2004
Where:      State Capitol, Springfield (Blue Room)
Time:       1:00 pm

To date, Choose Life Illinois has gathered the signatures of more than 25,000 Illinois citizens from 543 cities and 90 of the state's 102 counties. 

This movement to assist adoption service providers has generated support across racial and political lines.  Among the initiative's supporters is Bishop Simon Gordon of Triedstone Full Gospel Baptist Church, one of the largest African-American churches in the Chicagoland area.

Also involved with this effort are Scott and Janet Willis, the parents of six children who were tragically killed in their family van in 1994 in an accident that led to the unearthing of the licenses-for-bribes scandal under previous Governor, George Ryan. 

"The sale of licenses and license plates have been used in this state in a corrupt manner over the past decade," said Scott and Janet Willis in a letter they wrote to Governor Blagojevich and legislative leaders last year.  "We are convinced that the sale of license plates to promote life is a fitting answer for the abuse of the system in the past."

The pending legislation, if passed, would enable Illinoisans to purchase "Choose Life" license plates for their automobiles for an additional $25 over the standard license plate fee.  $23 of the $25 would then be set aside by the state in a special Choose Life fund for distribution of these monies to organizations around Illinois who council for adoption and directly to support birth mothers who choose adoption as well.

Since 1997, twelve states have approved "Choose Life" adoption aid license plates and another 18 states are considering similar legislation.

 

March 9, 2003 -- Choose Life License Plate Press Conference

ILLINOIS CHOOSE LIFE, INC. NEWS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE March 7, 2003                         

Contact: Dan Proft  (630) 464-1032

Bishop Simon Gordon, Rev. Scott Willis To Lead Coalition In Calling for “Choose Life” License Plates; 2,000 people expected to attend press conference calling for passage of legislation

Chicago, IL…On Sunday, Triedstone Full Gospel Baptist Church will be the site of a unified call for passage of the Choose Life license plate legislation currently pending in the Illinois General Assembly.

                    Press Conference Details:

When:   Sunday, March 9th

Where:  Triedstone Full Gospel Baptist Church
        1415 W. 104th Street, Chicago

Time:   2:30 PM (immediately following the 12 Noon service)

The “Choose Life” Illinois coalition transcends racial and political divisions.    

Scott and Janet Willis, the parents of six children who were tragically killed in their family van in 1994 in an accident that led to the unearthing of the licenses-for-bribes scandal, have become involved with Choose Life license plate endeavor. 

“The sale of licenses and license plates have been used in this state in a corrupt manner over the past decade,” said Scott and Janet Willis in a letter they wrote to Gov. Blagojevich and legislative leaders.  “We are convinced that the sale of license plates to promote life is a fitting answer for the abuse of the system in the past.”

Joining Bishop Gordon and the Willises will be State Representative Randy Hultgren (R-Wheaton), the House sponsor of “Choose Life,” and a bipartisan coalition of state legislators, crisis pregnancy center operators, pro-family grassroots leaders, religious clergy, and adoptive parents and children.

The coalition will call on the House State Government Administration Committee, chaired by Rep. Jack Franks (D-Woodstock), to pass House Bill 10, and for the Senate Health and Human Services Committee, chaired by Sen. Barack Obama (D-Chicago), to pass Senate Bill 1502, out of their respective committees when they meet on Wednesday. 

To date, the Illinois “Choose Life” license plate initiative has collected signatures of support from more than 18,500 Illinoisans in 88 of the state's 102 counties and from 508 different communities representing 99% of the state's population.

The pending legislation, if passed, would enable Illinoisans to purchase “Choose Life” license plates for an additional $25 over the standard license plate fee.  $22 of the $25 would then be set aside by the state in a special Choose Life fund for distribution of these monies to organizations around Illinois who council for adoption and directly to support birth mothers who choose adoption.

Since 1997, seven states have approved “Choose Life” license plates and another 15 states are considering similar legislation.
                                                           

December 2, 2002 -- Initial Choose Life License Plate Press Conference

A press conference was held on December 2, 2002 to annouce the effort to get legislation (SB2426) passed in Illinois to create the Choose Life specialty license plate.   Coverage of this story occurred on WLS (890) and WBBM (780) radio and Fox News at 9pm (TV channel 32).  Below is the press release issued to annouce this press conference:

Choose Life Illinois
www.ilchoose-life.org
phone: (847) 526-1152

MEDIA ADVISORY

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE           Contact:     Dan Proft
December 2, 2002                     630.464.1032    

Black, White, Republican, Democrat: 
Broad-based Coalition Calls For Passage of "Choose Life" License Plates
State Sen. O'Malley, Bishop Simon Gordon lead the charge

Chicago, IL.  State Senator Patrick O'Malley (R-Palos Park) and Bishop Simon Gordon of the Triedstone Full Gospel Baptist Church in Chicago, will lead a group that consists of grassroots pro-family leaders, crisis pregnancy center operators, and adoptive parents and children, in calling on the Illinois General Assembly to pass SB 2426, authorizing the creation of "Choose Life" specialty license plates in Illinois.

Press Conference Details:
When:      Monday, December 2nd
Where:     Thompson Center, 100 W. Randolph, Chicago, 14th Floor
Time:       1:00pm

To date, the Illinois "Choose Life" license plate initiative has collected signatures of support from nearly 15,000 Illinoisans in 81 different counties from 450 different communities.

If legislation to create the license plates were passed, Illinoisans would be able to buy these plates for their automobiles for an additional $25 over the standard license plate fee.  $23 of the $25 would then be set aside by the state in a special Choose Life fund for distribution of these monies to organizations around Illinois who council for adoption.

If SB 2426 is not passed during this week's Veto Session of the General Assembly, legislation to authorize creation of the license plates would have to be reintroduced when the new General Assembly takes office next year.

State Senator Patrick O'Malley ran in the Republican Primary for Governor in March 2002.   In addition to Triedstone, Bishop Simon Gordon is also the Overseer for the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship of Illinois, representing 118 churches in Cook County.

Six states currently have "Choose Life" license plates available for sale.