SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Following the adjournment of the Illinois General Assembly’s spring legislative session, state Rep. Karina Villa, D-West Chicago, issued the following statement:
“Throughout this spring legislative session, I have used both my life and professional experiences to serve as a strong advocate for our local communities in Springfield.
“I am proud to have supported an increase in Illinois’ minimum wage. As the daughter of local small business owners, I fought for a plan to help low-income workers and businesses alike, and the legislation I supported that has now been signed into law balances families’ need for fair pay with the needs of small businesses.
“I used my experience as a school social worker and mental health advocate to make strides towards destigmatizing mental health education. I spearheaded legislation that will make mental health services and suicide prevention resources more widely available to our students, from kindergarten through college, and to low-income families.
“As a lifelong resident of our community, I understand the need for tax relief for homeowners and local residents. I advocated for property tax relief by supporting a measure to increase the senior citizens homestead exemption to ensure that local seniors are not forced out of their homes due to unaffordable property tax bills. I also fought for a Fair Tax plan to make the wealthiest pay their fair share, because middle-class families bear too much of the burden of Illinois’ unfair tax system – The Fair Tax plan I supported will bring relief to 97% of all taxpayers across Illinois.
“I took the first step in getting our state back on track by proudly supporting a bipartisan, balanced budget plan that prioritizes critical services, like meals on wheels and breast and cervical cancer screenings, while controlling state spending and paying down the enormous backlog of unpaid bills. I worked to ensure that school funding was a top priority, and I also supported a critically needed capital proposal to address Illinois’ crumbling infrastructure with projects here in our own community and throughout the state.”
“While I feel that lawmakers have made great progress in correcting errors and irresponsible choices made by previous administrations, there is still a lot of work to be done and difficult decisions to be made to get Illinois back to fiscal prosperity. I am committed to continuing my efforts to help build a stronger Illinois.”