Each year, the Illinois Environmental Council releases a scorecard assigning a percentage score to state legislators based on how they voted on bills affecting the environment.
A record number of 100 percent scores were awarded this year, including one to Rep. Larry Walsh Jr., D-Elwood, according to the IEC. Legislators are evaluated on whether they voted with the “pro-environment” position on a bill.
State Rep. David Welter, R-Morris, also earned a 100 percent score for 2018, up from a 78.6 percent score last year. Other notable state legislators who received a 100 percent score included Sen. Daniel Biss, D-Evanston, a former gubernatorial candidate, and Rep. Juliana Stratton, D-Chicago, the lieutenant governor-elect.
The IEC added that the number of 100 percent scores reflect the fact that legislators increasingly ask IEC’s lobbyists if bills will be considered for the scorecard.
Among other local state legislators, Sen. Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant, D-Shorewood, earned a score of 83.3 percent in 2018. Sen. Pat McGuire, D-Crest Hill, earned a 75 percent rating. Sen. Sue Rezin, R-Morris, scored a 75 percent rating.
In the House, Rep. Mark Batinick, R-Plainfield, earned a 77.8 percent rating in 2018, up significantly from a 33.3 percent rating in 2017. Rep. John Connor, D-Lockport, earned an 88.9 percent rating in 2018, down from 100 percent in 2017. Rep. Natalie Manley, D-Joliet, and Rep. Margo McDermed, R-Mokena, also earned an 88.9 percent rating this year.
Bills that the IEC supported this year included SB 2606, which would provide that state agencies have a policy in place to donate leftover food and identify food pantries, soup kitchens and other organizations in their area that accept food donations.
The IEC added that while the record number of 100 percent scores is a positive, it was tempered by the fact that many of the environmental community’s priority bills did not get a vote. For example, a bill that would have stopped federal rollbacks of the state’s environmental laws passed the Illinois Senate, but did not make it out of the House Environment Committee.
With some new faces in the General Assembly, the IEC said it’s looking forward to working with legislators on policies aimed at curbing emissions that contribute to climate change, reducing nutrient pollution in waterways and increasing preserved land.
News,City: Joliet,Region: Joliet
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November 27, 2018 at 12:13AM