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CCFB News» January 2021

Delegates Approve Cook County Farm Bureau Policy Submittals

01/05/2021 @ 9:55 am

As a conclusion to this year’s grassroots policy process, Farm Bureau delegates from throughout Illinois approve Cook County Farm Bureau’s policy submittals during the virtual 2020 Illinois Agricultural Association® annual meeting.

 

Compensation of Public Officials

We support legislators only receiving compensation for the days they are in office.

 

Existing law allows for lawmakers to receive a full month salary even if they resign their seat effective the first of the month.

 

Legislative Bodies

We support prohibiting lawmakers from concurrently serving as an elected official and as a paid lobbyist.

 

In Illinois, it’s legal for an elected official to be a paid lobbyist, if they aren’t lobbying the same branch of government they were elected to represent. A recent proposal would prohibit members of the General Assembly from working as lobbyists or in a manner that would require them to register as a lobbyist while they are an elected official. The proposal further bars their immediate family members, spouses, or others living with them, from being paid as lobbyists. The ban would also keep those individuals from communicating with executive officials in both state and local government for the purpose of trying to influence administrative action in those offices.

 

Chicago City Council members took similar action at the end of 2019, fulfilling one of Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s anti-corruption promises. The City Council resolution bans aldermen, city workers, state lawmakers, and other elected officials from lobbying City Hall or other city departments for private gain.

 

A recent analysis by WLS-TV found Illinois has had more public corruption convictions than any other state since 2000. The state has put away 891 individuals for their roles in various schemes during the past two decades.

 

Law and Order

We support the regulation and taxation of recreational marijuana.

 

This language is essentially cleanup language for Farm Bureau policy. Since January 2020 anyone 21 and older can legally purchase recreational cannabis from a dispensary in Illinois.

 

Taxes and fees from cannabis are to be deposited into a Cannabis Regulation Fund, which then defrays the administrative costs of the state agencies responsible for administering the program. The state agencies and offices that receive funding from the Cannabis Regulation Fund for direct and indirect costs associated with the implementation, administration, and enforcement of the Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act include:

 

  • Governor’s Office for the Cannabis Regulation Oversight Officer (sometimes known as the “Cannabis Czar”) and its staff and activities
  • Department of Revenue
  • Department of State Police
  • Department of Financial and Professional Regulation
  • Department of Agriculture
  • Department of Public Health
  • Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity and
  • Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority.

 

Policy generation is an ongoing process for Farm Bureau; Governmental Affairs Committee members will prepare and release the first of several ‘micro’ Viewpoint Surveys in the upcoming months. Members with ideas for policy topics are encouraged to contact Bona Heinsohn at 708-354-3276.

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