NAPERVILLE – Gov. Bruce Rauner joined Lt. Gov. Evelyn Sanguinetti, legislative leaders and local elected officials Friday to announce four bipartisan pieces of legislation to streamline local government, delivering more control to communities.
“Today we are one step closer to empowering our local communities and giving them the necessary tools to rein in their out of control costs,” Rauner said. “These four bills are just the start of delivering more value to taxpayers by reducing layers of redundant bureaucracy. I want to thank the lieutenant governor and the task force for their hard work, and I look forward to working with the legislature to get these bills passed.”
“I believe the recommendations put forward today will have a tremendous impact on the people of Illinois,” Sanguinetti said. “It was an honor to serve as the chairman of the Local Government Consolidation and Unfunded Mandates Task Force. I look forward to continue working with members of the task force as we work to streamline local government and make it more efficient for the taxpayers of Illinois.”
According to the U.S. Census of Government, Illinois has more local units of government than any other state in the nation at 6,963. Illinois also has the second-highest effective property tax rate in the nation. These four pieces of legislation help reduce state barriers to consolidation, and empower taxpayers and local leaders to pursue efficient and effective government.
The proposed legislation includes:
Citizens Empowerment Act: Empowers Illinois citizens and local governments to consolidate duplicative, excessive or unnecessary units of government via referendum.
DuPage County Consolidation Powers Expansion: Provides that the Local Government Reduction and Efficiency Division of the Counties Code applies to all counties, which currently only applies to DuPage County.
Evanston Township Consolidation Expansion: Extends to all coterminous townships and municipalities the same authority to consolidate that is currently only provided to Evanston.
Township Consolidation: Removes arbitrary barriers to township consolidation that exist in statute so local residents or units of government can consolidate if they so choose.