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Collins advances lower rates for prison phone calls

collins 052716SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Jacqueline Y. Collins (D-Chicago 16th) advanced legislation today to address the legal and social justice concerns of families affected by the incarceration of a loved one. Currently, a telecommunications company and the state split millions in profits from collect calls prisoners make to family members at a rate of 11.8 cents per minute. Collins’ legislation would cap that rate at seven cents per minute, with no additional service fees.

“The driving objective of our criminal justice system should be rehabilitation, not profit,” Collins said. “Exorbitant rates, fees and minimum charges for phone calls isolate inmates from their loved ones, tearing the fabric of families and communities.”

Link fights to protect car buyers

link usedcarSPRINGFIELD—Consumers soon could receive more warranty protection when buying a used car in Illinois thanks to legislation sponsored by State Senator Terry Link (D-Vernon Hills).

Under House Bill 4377, used automobile sales would include an implied warranty that would last for 15 days after the purchase or until 500 miles are driven, whichever comes first. The implied warranty would allow a buyer to give notice of a breach of warranty to the seller to allow for a remedy.

Harmon passes legislation to fund fire, police line-of-duty awards

Harmon03032016Scholarships for the children of Illinois firefighters and police officers who die in the line of duty would be funded again under legislation that passed in the Illinois Senate on Thursday.

Senate Bill 2051, sponsored by Senator Don Harmon (D-Oak Park), would appropriate $975,000 for college scholarships for children of deceased police officers, firefighters and correctional officers, as well as $5 million for payment of line-of-duty awards.

The payments have been held up because of the state budget stalemate.

Hastings modernizing child support laws

HastingsIncomeSharesSPRINGFIELD – Senator Michael Hastings (D-Tinley Park) sponsored legislation to modernize the state’s child support laws by requiring both parents’ income to be considered in determining child support.

“Illinois has a lot of archaic laws. The child support laws on the books do not consider the modern family when determining the necessary child support for many families,” Hastings said.

House Bill 3982 would update a portion of  Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act for the first time since 1984.