Local Government Lowdown

Get insights and analysis on all the latest Illinois government legal news from Tressler’s local attorneys.

Change To The Open Meetings Act Exemption Regarding Employment The Governor recently signed an amendment to the Open Meetings Act into law effective immediately. 5 ILCS 120/2(c). The law had allowed public bodies to go into closed session to discuss the appointment, employment, compensation, discipline, performance or dismissal of specific employees.  The amendment now extends that not only to employees of a public body but also those specific individuals who serve as independent contractors in…
The Tort Immunity Act is a useful tool for all public entities. Plaintiff attorneys who do not understand its impact often fail to understand that mere negligence is insufficient under the Act. Willful and wanton conduct is the standard for liability in most instances. The following case demonstrates that calling something willful and wanton does not make it so. Samantha Biancorosso, a sixth-grade student at Troy Community Consolidated School District No. 30C, was injured during cheerleading practice while…
The Illinois statute found at 105 ILCS 5/10-20.19c imposes certain requirements on Illinois school districts regarding recycled paper and paper products and solid waste management (“School Recycled Paper and Solid Waste Reduction Law”), with an apparently significant deadline approaching in mid-2020. Section (a-5) of the statute provides that: Each school district must periodically review its procurement procedures and specifications regarding the purchase of products and supplies; Those procedures and specifications must be modified to require…
The Illinois Equal Pay Act of 2003 (EPA) already prohibits employers from paying unequal wages to men and women for doing the same or substantially similar work. (820 ILCS 112/1 et seq.) It also prohibits employers from paying African American employees less than other employees under the same circumstances. On September 29, 2019, Illinois will join a short list of progressive states when a recent amendment to the EPA goes into effect to prohibit employers…
In a surprisingly cutting-edge move, the State of Illinois has enacted the Artificial Intelligence Video Interview Act.  Public Act 101-260 becomes effective January 1, 2020. An employer seeking to record video interviews and use artificial intelligence to analyze job applicant videos must, before the interview, 1) notify each applicant that artificial intelligence may be used to analyze the applicant’s video interview and consider the applicant’s fitness for the position; and 2) provide the applicant with…
The Illinois legislature recently passed Senate Bill 0075 – a sweeping piece of legislation expected to significantly alter the employment landscape for Illinois employers in 2020. This massive bill, over 195 pages in length, creates the Illinois Workplace Transparency Act aimed at protecting both public and private sector employees from unlawful discrimination and harassment in the workplace. The bill was sent to Governor J.B. Pritzker on June 10, 2019, for his approval/signature. If the Governor…
We are proud to announce that Erik Peck, partner at Tressler LLP, recently received the Paul Harris Fellow Recognition Award from the LaGrange Rotary Club, the Brookfield Rotary Club and Riverside Rotary Club for his work rebuilding a playground at a battered women’s shelter. Rotary established the Paul Harris Fellowship Recognition in 1957 to encourage and show appreciation for substantial contributions. Many notable figures have been named Paul Harris Fellows, including U.S. President Jimmy Carter, Russian…
On June 25, 2019, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker signed House Bill (HB) 1438, legalizing recreational marijuana use in the state of Illinois. The “Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act” will go into effect on January 1, 2020. You can hang it on your office wall as surely as you hung that Jimi Hendrix poster on your bedroom wall back in the ‘70s. Soon adults age 21 years and older may legally possess and consume cannabis, cannabis…
In Nieves v. Bartlett, the United States Supreme Court denied permitting an arrestee, Russell Bartlett, a cause of action for retaliatory arrest against the two arresting police officers.  Nieves v. Bartlett, 587 U.S. _____, No. 17-1174 (2019).  Bartlett was arrested for disorderly conduct and resisting arrest by Sgt. Nieves and Trooper Weight during Paxson, Alaska’s annual “Arctic Man” festival.  The arresting officers stated Bartlett was “highly intoxicated,” yelling and being aggressive at the time of…
Dorothy Crawley was a tenured teacher at Wells Preparatory Elementary School.  After receiving an anonymous tip that she had used sick days to take a Caribbean cruise, the Chicago School Board investigated and then filed charges against her alleging that, among other things, she made false representations in her employment record, violated Board policy prohibiting the use of sick days for personal time and engaged in conduct unbecoming of a school employee. The Board recommended…