SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – As the 101st General Assembly adjourned their spring legislative session, state Rep. Terra Costa Howard, D-Glen Ellyn, issued the following statement to highlight her legislative priorities and accomplishments during her first session:
“One of my top priorities as state representative has been to help expand our local economy and create high-paying jobs. As a small business owner, I understand that investments in our local communities translate to growth in our economy, which is why I spearheaded bipartisan legislation to increase investment in local infrastructure and economic development in DuPage County. My legislation will give our local governments more flexibility in spending revenue from the hotel tax, enabling them to make critical investments in roads, bridges, and other infrastructure improvements that create and support jobs.
“To address the state’s dire financial condition, I advocated for a balanced budget that reflects my commitment to controlling spending and paying down the State’s enormous backlog of unpaid bills, while also investing in education and critical services and holding the line on taxes imposed on our middle-class families.
“I have been a champion for property tax relief for local homeowners. When media reports revealed that a legal loophole allowed tenants of the DuPage Airport Authority to skip out on nearly $770,000 in overdue property tax payments, I took action. With sweeping bipartisan support, I passed legislation that will penalize airport tenants that refused to pay their fair share. Homeowners can’t get away with refusing to pay their property tax bills without consequences. Now those businesses will be held to the same standard.
“As a guardian ad litem who advocates for people who are vulnerable and in trouble, I am proud of my efforts to pass new legislation to fight human trafficking. Under these laws, human traffickers and others who profit from the exploitation of vulnerable women and children will face harsher penalties, and all law enforcement officers in Illinois will get additional training on identifying and investigating suspected human trafficking situations.
“I know that we still have important work to do to get Illinois back on track, but I am very proud that we accomplished so much in this session. I am looking forward to spending the summer listening to my constituents, hearing their priorities, and then coming back to Springfield with fresh ideas that will help to make our state government work better and more efficiently for the people of the 48th District.”