bush 010323GRAYSLAKE – Following nearly a decade of public service in the General Assembly, State Senator Melinda Bush retired from the Senate Saturday.

“It has been an honor serving as a state senator for nearly a decade – passing 100 laws and counting,” said Bush (D-Grayslake). “From working to secure an equitable funding model for our state’s schools, to providing economic development to our local communities, to leading the fight for ethics reform in Springfield, I am proud to have brought a multifaceted approach to the General Assembly.”

Bush – a lifelong resident of Lake County – represented children and families in the 31st Senate District for nearly 10 years.

“When I think back on the last decade, I think about the impactful, emotional moments that have taken place in Springfield as we passed monumental legislation that made our state more inclusive and equitable,” Bush said.

Senator Bush spent her career advocating for women, most notably serving as the chief sponsor of the Reproductive Health Act, a historic bill which repealed outdated abortion laws to ensure that women in Illinois still have the right to choose, should Roe v. Wade be overturned. Her action in 2019 would go on to enshrine those rights when the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the case in the summer of 2022.

She also served as chair of the Senate Environment Committee for eight years, sponsoring a number of pieces of legislation including the Coal Ash Pollution Prevention Act, a landmark environmental protection bill that ensures polluters – not taxpayers – pay for needed cleanup of toxic coal ash and plants that produce it, as well as the Lead Service Line Replacement Act, making Illinois only the second state to require lead pipes to be replaced to ensure safer drinking water in our communities.

“I am proud to have been part of some of the most monumental pieces of legislation in Illinois history,” said Bush. “Each day I spent in the General Assembly reminded me how rewarding it is to be part of something bigger than yourself. I am grateful for the opportunity to make real, significant change in our state.”

Senator Bush also sponsored the Climate and Equitable Jobs Act, which guarantees Zion – a community that stores spent nuclear waste – will receive up to $9 million a year in Energy Transition Community grants.

Further, through her work to end the opioid crisis, Bush passed a law to expand access to the life-saving opioid antidote Naloxone and was also the chief sponsor of a law require prescribers to register with the Prescription Monitoring Program, and increase the amount of knowledge prescribers have about a patient’s prescription history.

"This truly has been the honor of my life and I will be forever grateful for the opportunity to serve,” Bush said.

Bush is looking forward to her next chapter and continued involvement in the community.