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SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Laura Ellman (D-Naperville) has introduced two measures that would begin phasing out harmful PFAS chemicals in Illinois.

“PFAS chemicals are also known as ‘forever chemicals’, because they’re too small to filter and their internal bonds are so strong that they don’t break down,” Ellman said. “There’s evidence that exposure to PFAS can cause a variety of health problems. We must act now if we want reduce the exposure of these chemicals in our water.”

Per-and polyfluoradlkyl substances (PFAS) are a large group of toxic chemicals that have the ability to repel oil and water, reduce friction and put out fires. For these reasons, they are used in everyday products such as waterproof apparel, nonstick cookware and food wrappers. They are especially prevalent in firefighting foam.

There is evidence that exposure to PFAS can lead to adverse health effects, like cancer, reproductive issues, and liver and kidney problems, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Studies have found PFAS contamination of drinking and groundwater in 49 states, including Illinois.

The first measure introduced by Ellman would establish a takeback program for PFAS-based firefighting foam through the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency. The program would allow fire departments to switch to PFAS-free alternatives, protecting firefighters from potentially toxic exposure, while keeping chemical waste out of landfills and waterways.

The second measure would put Illinois on a path to phase out the production, distribution, sale and use of PFAS in Illinois to keep first responders, consumers and the environment healthy.

“What has made these chemicals so useful, is also what has made them the problem,” Ellman said. “They’re durable and break down slowly, which causes a toxic buildup in our environment.”

Senate Bills 561 and 562 now await committee assignment in the Illinois Senate. 

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SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Laura Ellman (D-Naperville) was appointed to the Illinois Legislative Audit Commission Friday. Ellman is one of six senators who will serve on the bipartisan commission.

“I’m pleased to be given the opportunity to continue the important work of the commission on behalf of the people of Illinois and the 21st district,” Ellman said. “Ensuring bipartisan oversight of our      state agencies is a necessity to any functioning government.”

The bipartisan commission is responsible for the oversight of the State Audit Program, reviews the administration of public funds,      and oversees actions to improve agency policies. The membership includes 12 legislators appointed by members of the Senate and House of Representatives and is equally assigned between the two chambers and parties.

The commission is mandated to review all audits conducted by the State Auditor General.

Primary responsibilities of the commission include:

• Host public hearings on all major audits of state agencies to review problems, review agency administration, and secure corrective action.

• Make recommendations to the General Assembly and agency management for corrective legislation and other methods to strengthen weaknesses revealed through audits or at commission hearings.

• Monitor agency progress in implementing corrective action.

For additional information on the commission and upcoming meetings, visit www.ilga.gov. 

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SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Laura Ellman (D-Naperville) released the following statement in response to Gov. Pritzker’s budget address:

“The governor’s proposed budget showed a fairly realistic and responsible framework for the state. For example, one aspect of this budget that I was pleased to see was the state’s fully funded pension payment. Even during a pandemic, we need to maintain our commitment to fiscal discipline. I was glad to see that priorities I consider important for District 21 – child care, help for seniors, student aid – are maintained. While this proposal is not perfect, I’m looking forward to working with all of my colleagues to ensure we produce a responsible budget, serving current needs with an eye to the future.”

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NAPERVILLE – State Senator Laura Ellman (D-Naperville) announced Tuesday she will serve as chair of the Senate Financial Institutions Committee during the 102nd General Assembly.

“It’s an honor to represent the residents of the 21st district as the new chair of the Senate Financial Institutions Committee,” Ellman said. “Our financial institutions play a massive role in our state and local economies.”

The Senate Financial Institutions Committee primarily deals with legislation and policy that will affect the state’s financial services sectors which includes industries such as banking, insurance and real estate.

Ellman will also serve as chair of the appropriations subcommittee, vice chair of the Energy and Public Utilities Committee, and as a member the Senate Transportation, Higher Education and Agriculture Committees.

As the new committee chair of the Financial Institutions Committee, Ellman intends to produce a more equitable, and accessible financial environment for Illinoisans across the state that will ensure every community prospers.

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

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M113 Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
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