Managing The Decay



December 1, 2022

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VETO Session Ends with More Taxes and Illinoisans Still Threatened by Pro-Criminal SAFE-T Act


Shelbyville, Illinois–Today marked the last day of VETO session in Springfield.  A handful of bills were debated and passed including changes to the unemployment insurance (UI) fund and adjustments to the SAFE-T Act.   


an “Agreed Bill” process where both employers and labor worked together on the changes in statute. The bill will require rate hikes on employers and the state to pay back to the federal government the remaining $1.363 billion loan of the $4.5 billion Illinois borrowed to cover unemployment expenses related to the COVID lockdowns. Models predict employers will save an estimated $913 million with the agreement instead of not doing anything. Benefits will remain at the same level.

The SAFE-T Act changes were minor, including the allowance of detention in some instances of trespassing and giving prosecutors more flexibility in bringing certain cases to trial.  Important substantive changes related to cashless bail, anonymous complaints on police officers, compelling victims to testify in detention hearings and lessening penalties for repeat offenders which were in the original bill were not considered.

State Representative Brad Halbrook responded, “Once again, the answer to a problem the state created was to tax businesses more. I voted against the “Agreed” bill that will raise rates on employers to fix a problem created by the Pritzker administration. As regards the minor changes to the SAFE-T Act, criminals will remain having more consideration in the judicial system than the public, victims seeking justice will be exposed to additional harm as they can be forced to testify in detention hearings and Illinoisans’ safety will recede as dangerous criminals are released pending trial. To further insult law-abiding citizens, Democrats introduced legislation to give felons in jail the right to vote.”

To book State Representative Brad Halbrook for an interview, contact his office at 217-774-1306.


No Republicans Voted For The SAFE-T Act

Illinois Democrats are blowing off their responsibility to revisit the details of the law thereby ignoring the devastating consequences it will unleash. As it stands currently, the SAFE-T Act is an affront to public safety, the legislative process and our communities as a whole.

One aspect of the Act has already been instituted in Chicago and Cook County and has been wreaking havoc since 2017. It allows defendants released to electronic monitoring (EM) two weekly furloughs plus 48-hours of ‘free roaming’. These defendants are going off the rails. Soon this chaos will be spreading across all of Illinois if the SAFE-T Act is not entirely rejected or profoundly reformed.


Step Right Up, Folks!

On Tuesday, Governor Pritzker announced how he plans to repay the remaining unemployment debt Illinois owes the federal government. In reality, Illinois has been fiscally derelict while simultaneously handing out election year goodies, being one of only four states that still hasn’t fully repaid its loan.


End The ‘Consent Calendar’

The Consent Calendar allows the Illinois House leadership to bundle hundreds of bills together and pass them with a single roll call vote. The Illinois Freedom Caucus is calling for an end to this. While the list of bills is comprised mostly of ceremonial legislation, more substantive legislation that is included can be easily overlooked. Also, the process to remove an objectionable bill from the lengthy list is nearly impossible.


Christmas Tree Prices Are Up $20-50 This Year

Multiple factors are contributing to the sticker shock.


Government unions are a powerful political force in Illinois, but the unions themselves wrote the laws that require them to represent ALL workers.

The Illinois Labor Relations Board recently issued a decision confirming government unions cannot discriminate against nonmembers, and union membership status can play no role in a grievance or disciplinary procedure.


Illinois Democrats Just Want What’s Best For You

Yeah, right. There is no shortage of bad ideas coming out of Pritzker’s brood of vipers. They continue to propose ridiculous legislation. They pretend to be working on behalf of Illinoisans, when all they really care about is enriching and empowering themselves.

Here is the latest:

Pro-Criminal Legislation

More Of The Green New ‘Steal’



Christmas Lights Road Trip Through Illinois

This website maps out an adventure to get you in a festive spirit and see the best Christmas lights in Illinois! It also has a guide to some of the best winter attractions Illinois has to offer.

More From The Illinois Freedom Caucus:

SAFE-T ACT Trailer Bill #3


 The last couple of years in Springfield we have used the phrase “trailer bill” a lot more than usual. This phrase is used to reference a bill that is meant to directly impact or change a previous piece of legislation. The recurring use of this phrase sprung from the Democrats so called SAFE-T ACT, which is anything but safe. When you sit down to review the many flaws and mistakes in this legislation, it suddenly makes sense why the Democrats shoved the bill through with an hour's notice at 3AM almost 2 years ago. Now, for the 3rd time, we have debated and voted against a trailer bill that does nothing to solve the overall issues of the Act, and panders to more special interst groups. 
Freedom Caucus Member, State Rep. Blaine Wilhour, released the following thoughts on trailer bill #3: "“The changes to the SAFE-T Act are an attempt to address some of the specific concerns critics raised during the election such as the trespass provisions,” Wilhour said. “But while there are changes being made, the underlying principles of the Act remain the same. The original intent of only doing citations for trespassing remains in place and so from a practical standpoint what is really changing here? It is motion without movement. It is another example of the double speak that has become so common place in Springfield vernacular. We are once again doing something for the sake of doing something without actually doing anything. Proponents of these changes get to send out a press release and tout what a great job they did in fixing the SAFE-T Act when in reality very little changes with the passage of this bill. The intent of the SAFE-T Act was to fundamentally change our criminal justice system to reflect the far-left policies that prioritize criminals above the safety of our communities and despite these changes, that is still what the SAFE-T Act accomplishes.”

Unemployment Trust Fund Payback


As a result of Governor Pritzker's COVID lockdowns, the unemployment system was overrun with claims. We have now learned that there was 2 Billion Dollars in taxpayer money given out to fraudulent claims because the State of Illinois' infrastructure was unprepared for JB's orders, and they did nothing to fix it. Our unemployment trust fund went in the hole before anyone knew it, leaving yet another fiscal issue for Illinois. However, the State of Illinois was given billions of dollars in ARPA money from the federal government. Could this money have been used to pay our UI Trust debt? Yes. Was it used? No. 

Illinois Freedom Caucus Member, State Rep. Adam Niemerg stated, “ Other states used their ARPA money to pay off unemployment debt and make responsible payments. Illinois Democrats instead decided to dole out money for pet projects in their re-election campaigns, and stick the bill to taxpayers and business owners like usual.” 


The federal government loaned the fund $4.5 billion. Last March, instead of fully repaying the loan, the state paid the federal government $2.7 billion and paid another $450 million in September. The legislation approved this week accounts for the remaining balance on the federal loan. The so-called compromise would provide $1.8 billion in funding to make the Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund solvent. About $1.36 billion would go to pay back the federal government while about $450 million would go to the fund as a low-interest loan businesses will have to pay back. The payback will come from a 2.4% unemployment insurance rate increase to business over 5 years. 


As Freedom Caucus Member, State Rep. Dan Caulkins would say, “this is the sad story of Springfield. Create a problem, dream up a solution, and call yourself heroes.” 



Upcoming Concerns on Gun Control Legislation


Breaking⚠️: Democrats File Egregious Anti-2nd Amendment Legislation 
      Folks, this is the true horror of Springfield politics. Before we could even process the failed fiscal and public safety policy being pushed by the far left, the people of Illinois are slammed with another Unconstitutional bill. HB5855 is an egregious violation of our Constitutional Freedoms not only as citizens of Illinois, but of the United States! This bill eliminates gun ownership for anyone under 21 not in the military, and is a ban on AR-15 style rifles. If this is a sign of what will be pushed this coming session, we must be vigilant and ready to push back! The Freedom Caucus will always protect the 2nd Amendment!

Link to Bill:


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