SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Laura Ellman’s (D-Naperville) measure to remove an outdated law that prohibits drinking alcohol on trains, which hasn’t been enforced in nearly a century, was      signed into law on Friday.

“When I learned people have technically been breaking the law by ordering drinks on the Amtrak, I decided it was time to remove that law,” Ellman said. “Responsible adults should be able to legally enjoy these types of drinks on a train, and now they can.”

House Bill 3878 of the 101st General Assembly repeals the Railroad Intoxicating Liquor Act of 1911, which prohibits drinking alcohol on trains and around train stations, and gives conductors the ability to arrest violators and charge them with a Class C misdemeanor.

“Laws that aren’t generally enforced are still laws and technically still can be enforced,” Ellman said. “For years now, many trains have included alcoholic beverages on their menus. Now they won’t technically be breaking a law that was put in place during Prohibition.”

Ellman encourages people to use safe transportation, such as Metra, as an alternative to driving under the influence.

NAPERVILLE – State Senator Laura Ellman (D-Naperville) is announcing that school districts in the 21st District will receive      $66.1 million in additional funding to help address the many challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I’d like to acknowledge all of the hard work and sacrifice students, teachers, and parents have given for more than a year now,”      Ellman said. “I’m confident that this funding will help all of us move forward and eventually beyond this once-in-a-lifetime pandemic.”

The funding comes as part of the most recent federal COVID-19                                                                                                relief packages. Schools, students and parents have overcome challenges that no one could have imagined before the pandemic began, including remote and hybrid learning, digital connection issues, new processes for receiving state and federal aid that normally flow through schools, and more.

Local school districts are set to receive the following amounts:

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Ellman committee

SPRINGFIELD – A measure sponsored by State Senator Laura Ellman (D-Naperville) that would require insurers to cover important tests for people with or at risk of developing diabetes passed committee on Wednesday.

“Diabetes is a serious, sometimes preventable condition,” Ellman said. “You have a right to know if you’re at risk, and your insurance should cover the request.”

According to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, an identified risk factor for people who have or may have prediabetes and diabetes is vitamin D deficiency and low blood sugar levels. Ellman’s measure would require insurers to cover A1C and Vitamin D tests that are recommended by health care providers for people who may have or have prediabetes, type 1 and type 2 diabetes.

The A1C test, also known as the hemoglobin A1C, is a simple blood test that measures the average blood sugar levels of an individuals over the three months prior to the test being administered. It’s one of the most common tools used to diagnose prediabetes.

“Managing diabetes isn’t simple, and unmanaged diabetes can lead to serious health issues later in life,” Ellman said. “Insulin is expensive. The least we can do is make preventative tests as accessible and affordable as possible.”

According to the National Council for State Legislators, as of 2014, nearly 29.1 million people in the United States have diabetes, and an additional 86 million are considered to have prediabetes.

Senate Bill 1854 passed the Senate Insurance Committee with no opposition and will now head to the Senate floor for further consideration.

Ellman

SPRINGFIELD – Legislation sponsored by State Senator Laura Ellman (D-Naperville) designed to recognize the historical and present-day contributions of Muslim culture in the state of Illinois passed committee Tuesday.

 “This measure looks to strengthen the awareness of cultural contributions made by the Muslim community across the nation and the state of Illinois,” Ellman said. “It’s our job to make sure all Illinoisans feel represented in this state. This measure makes sure we begin that process.”

 The measure would require all Illinois public schools to cover contributions made by Muslims and Muslim Americans in history classes. Currently, the teaching of history in Illinois public schools must include the roles African Americans and other ethnic groups. This legislation would emphasize the importance of Muslim contributions in the state of Illinois.

 The measure would also honor one of the most famous practicing Muslims in modern American history by creating a new commemorative state holiday, declaring Jan. 17 Muhammad Ali Day in Illinois.

 “Ali was known for his bravado in the ring, but for his lifelong humanitarian efforts, he served quietly,” Ellman said. “He really did float like a butterfly and sting like a bee.”

 Senate Bill 564 passed the Senate Education Committee with a vote of 11-3 and will now head to the Senate floor for further consideration.

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475 River Bend Rd., Suite 500
Naperville, IL 60540
Phone: (630) 601-9961

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Springfield, IL 62706
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