Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White applauded the General Assembly for passing five important bills initiated by his office. “As Secretary of State, I continue to look for ways to further improve customer service, upgrade road safety and expand the organ/tissue donor registry,” said White. “I applaud and thank the General Assembly for passing these five key measures which will do just that. I urge the governor to sign each of these bills into law.” The five bills headed to the governor for consideration include:
House Bill 394 – Allow advertising to offset costs of vehicle registration reminder notices
This measure will allow private companies to pay for advertising space on vehicle registration renewals. It is an effort to further ensure the Secretary of State’s office has the funding to continue mailing out reminder notices – especially if the budget impasse continues. Restrictions outlined in the bill on who cannot put their logo on the postcards include entities licensed or regulated by the Secretary of State, any person or entity manufacturing or distributing pharmaceuticals, medical marijuana or alcohol, and elected officers, candidates for elective office and campaign committees.
House Bill 395 – Brings Illinois Closer to Full Compliance with the Federal REAL ID Act
With the passage of this measure, Illinois is in its final stretch to fully comply with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) REAL ID Act. HB 395 authorizes the Secretary of State’s office to offer Illinois residents the choice to either obtain a REAL ID-compliant driver’s license/identification card (DL/ID) or a noncompliant DL/ID. With a REAL ID-compliant card, Illinois residents will be able to board an airplane and enter federal and military buildings. A noncompliant card will be used for driving privileges and personal identification, but cannot be used for boarding a plane or entering federal buildings. A valid U.S. passport is currently a REAL ID-compliant document and can be used for air travel and entering federal and military buildings. Illinois is currently 90 percent REAL ID compliant and DHS has indicated the state will reach full compliance sometime next year, well before the final federal deadline of late 2020.
House Bill 773 – Removes car dealership stickers and paperwork from car windows before test drives
This bill improves road safety by requiring the removal of stickers and paperwork on car windows before test driving a dealership’s vehicle. This is a common-sense solution that removes potential obstructions from the front and side windows of a vehicle, stemming from the tragic death of Brendan Burke who was killed in a car crash by a driver test driving a vehicle that had decals and paperwork obstructing the driver’s vision.
House Bill 1805 – Expands Organ/Tissue Donor Registry
This measure will allow 16- and 17-year-olds to register for the state’s First Person Consent Organ/Tissue Donor Registry when they receive their driver’s license or identification card. By joining the registry, 16- and 17-year-olds will be giving consent to donate their organs and tissue at the time of their death, with a single limitation. The procurement organizations, Gift of Hope Organ and Tissue Network and Mid-America Transplant, must make a reasonable effort to contact a parent or guardian to ensure that they approve of the donation. Under current law, an individual must be at least 18 years old to join the registry.
House Bill 2610 – Upgrades state’s mandatory insurance program
This bill requires insurance companies work in conjunction with the Secretary of State’s office to electronically verify that motorists in question have insurance. If electronic verification is unsuccessful, the Secretary of State’s office will follow up with a written request to the vehicle owner giving them the opportunity to prove they have insurance before suspending the vehicle owner’s registration. This program will better ensure that registered motorists have and maintain automobile insurance policies. Beginning in 2019, vehicle owners’ automobile insurance will be verified at least twice a calendar year at random intervals ensuring that vehicle owners are complying with the state’s mandatory auto liability insurance laws.