Three Weeks Left, New Crime Fighting Legislation, Redbirds and Panthers in the House, and More

Three Weeks Left

We have three short weeks left before our scheduled May 19 adjournment, and we have yet to see an official state revenue estimate for fiscal year 2024 that should be the first step in crafting a new state budget. Passing a truly balanced budget will be one of my top priorities. 

This week we were in session three days and passed a total of 5 bills, none of which addressed the important issues facing our communities such has skyrocketing crime, taxes, and consumer prices.

Bills Passed the House on 4/26/2023
HB1097 Mary E. Flowers HIGHER ED-GRANT-EXONERATED04/26/2023HouseThird Reading – Short Debate – Passed 071-040-000
HB2317hRobert “Bob” Rita FIRST-TIME FISHING LICENSE04/26/2023HouseThird Reading – Short Debate – Passed 112-000-000
HB2911 Lakesia Collins AGING-OMBUDSMAN PROGRAM04/26/2023HouseThird Reading – Short Debate – Passed 112-000-000
HB3257 Robert “Bob” Rita DYED HERMIT CRAB, GOLDFISH04/26/2023HouseThird Reading – Short Debate – Passed 111-000-000
Bills Passed the House on 4/27/2023
HB3479hMark L. Walker FINANCIAL REGULATION-VARIOUS04/27/2023HouseThird Reading – Short Debate – Passed 090-021-000

Our scheduled Friday session was cancelled. This is no way to conduct business in the people’s House.

Protecting Families and Taxpayers

I and fellow members of the House Republican Truth in Public Safety, or TIPS, Working Group this week announced a new package of legislation we are championing to meaningfully improve public safety in our communities.

The Task Force focused on three specific areas in which changes are sorely needed:

  • Protecting Victims of Crime
  • The Real Pre-Trial Fairness Act
  • Recruitment and Retention of Law Enforcement Officers     

I am personally sponsoring House Bill 4050 which would clarify that school resource officers should not be required to wear body cams. All students that would be captured in the footage are juveniles, so all of their images would need to be redacted, making the footage useless. Officers working undercover would also be excluded from body cam mandates, because others working undercover may inadvertently be recorded and compromised, and that puts lives at risk.

One other crucial component of the bill would allow officers involved in “use of force” incidents to review their body cam footage before filling out their reports. A ‘use of force’ report is the most critical report a law enforcement official will fill out in his or her career, and it needs to be an accurate description of what happened.  In a high-stress situation recall can be limited, so being allowed to review the footage is especially important.

In addition, I am also sponsoring House Bill 3358 which would require each member of the General Assembly to complete annually a law enforcement ride-along and a simulation training program.

These bills, along with the other bills we’re proposing, are meaningful suggestions to ensure we’re supporting our first responders, and working with them for safer streets and safer neighborhoods…and that we’re also fulfilling our responsibility to taxpayers. To see all bills include d in the new House Republican Public Safety Package click here.

Heads Up! More Secretary of State Services will be by Appointment

More Secretary of State facilities will soon switch to appointment only for certain services.

Around the House

I was so happy this week to lead the Illinois House in honoring IHSA Class 2A wrestling champion Washington HIgh School Panthers! Congratulations on a fantastic season! Watch below!

State Senator Win Stoller and I (both MTHS class of 1989 and basketball co-captains) couldn’t be prouder of this group of young men. What an honor to host the State Champion Metamora Township High School Redbird basketball team in Springfield. Congrats to coach Danny Grieves and all the coaches, staff and players. 

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Back in the District

Thank you Congresswoman Lauren Underwood for inviting Team Tipsword to your new Joliet Congressional Office Open House.

I was proud to participate this week in the ribbon-cutting ceremony for phase 1 of the playground renovations at Metamora Grade School.

Metamora Grade School hosts Ribbon Cutting Ceremony for Playground Renovations (

It was such an honor to address the Assembly of 300 Women at the 127th Conference of the Illinois State Organization National Society Daughters of the American Revolution! My 7th Great Grandfather, Griffin Tipsword, served during the American Revolution. Generations of Tipsword’s are so Grateful to the DAR for keeping our family stories alive.