Publications

Articles on Local Government

Special service area commissions created for municipalities, counties

June
2017
Illinois Law Update
Page 18
The Property Tax Code was amended to create "special service area commissions" that may be established by the corporate authorities of a municipality or county for the purpose of managing a particular service area.

Financially Distressed Local Governments: In Illinois, Relief Options Are Limited

By Richard J. Mason
April
2017
Article
Page 40
The author takes a look at current debt-relief options for financially distressed cities and finds them wanting.

Reasonable description of land is sufficient for condemnation

September
2016
Illinois Law Update
Page 18
On June 30, 2016, the Appellate Court of Illinois held that the circuit court did not err in finding that the Illinois State Toll Highway Authority was authorized to condemn land around I-90.

House bill proposes to give counties more control over weight limits for vehicles on highways

August
2016
Illinois Law Update
Page 18
House Bill 6427 would amend the Illinois Highway Code and the Illinois Vehicle Code to allow counties to impose weight limits on vehicles.

County ordinances may not penalize tenants or landlords for contacting emergency services

February
2016
Illinois Law Update
Page 18
Under new sections added to the Counties Code, 55 ILCS 5/5-1005.10, and the Municipal Code, 65 ILCS 5/1-2-1.5, no county shall enact a regulation penalizing tenants or landlords based on certain contact with emergency services.

Counties can seek payment of default for fines and costs for collection

September
2015
Illinois Law Update
Page 18
The Counties Code has been amended to add a section allowing a county to collect payment of a fine or penalty.

Cities and park districts may enter into lease agreements with corporations and societies for the operation of aquariums or museums

July
2015
Illinois Law Update
Page 18
The Park District Aquarium and Museum Act has been amended to allow a city or park district to enter into a lease agreement with a corporation or society such that the corporation or society takes on the role of improving, maintaining, and operating an aquarium or museum.

New method of discontinuing local mass transit service

June
2015
Illinois Law Update
Page 16
The Local Mass Transit District Act has been amended to allow for discontinuance of services in districts created under section 3.1 of the Act.

Township boards may exempt certain expenses from pre-payment auditing

June
2015
Illinois Law Update
Page 16
A township board must meet to examine and audit accounts prior to any bill payment. Certain payments are exempt.

New state and local government record retention and destruction standards

May
2015
Illinois Law Update
Page 16
The Secretary of State has updated the recordkeeping and retention standards for state and local governments.

Tax collection to improve county roads

October
2014
Illinois Law Update
Page 472
From now until August 1, 2024, road districts, consolidated or otherwise, may accumulate no more than 50% of the taxes collected from a subdivision in order to improve nondedicated roads that are in the subdivision from and for which the taxes were collected.

Population increased for liquor control commissioner restriction. PA 098-0010

August
2013
Illinois Law Update
Page 392
Under the Liquor Control Act of 1934, the mayor or board of trustees president (or their designee) shall be the local liquor control commissioner for their respective locality. 235 ILCS 5/4-2.

Update: Finding Illinois Municipal Ordinances Online (and Free!)

By Tom Gaylord
January
2013
Column
Page 46
A fresh look at websites that offer free online municipal codes.

Governmental tort immunity for ice and snow on recreational property

By Adam W. Lasker
December
2012
LawPulse
Page 626
Plaintiffs can't recover from a local government for injuries caused when they slip on snow and ice on recreational property, the Illinois Supreme Court ruled recently.

Recovery for damage to local government-owned roadway property. PA 097-0373

June
2012
Illinois Law Update
Page 292
Illinois lawmakers have amended the Illinois Highway Code to allow local governments to request recovery for the costs of repairing or replacing damaged or destroyed local government-owned roadway property.

Illinois Municipal Code and implied preemption

October
2010
Illinois Law Update
Page 508
On July 27, 2010, the Appellate Court of Illinois, First District, reversed a decision of the Circuit Court of Cook County, finding that a local ordinance defining an abandoned gasoline station as a nuisance was not preempted by section 11-31-1 of the Illinois Municipal Code (65 ILCS 5/11-31-1). 

2010 Spring Session Roundup

By Jim Covington
August
2010
Column
Page 404
A summary of key Illinois legislation passed this spring.

Legal Immunities for Local Governments in Public Health Emergencies

By Christina Marie Webb
June
2010
Article
Page 314
A brief review of immunities available to local governments, governmental employees, and volunteers if they're sued for conduct arising from public health emergencies.

Not all dividing lines constitute “the border” line for the purposes of territory disconnection

June
2010
Illinois Law Update
Page 292
On March 30, 2010, the Appellate Court of Illinois, Second District, on a matter of first impression, affirmed the decision of the Circuit Court of Kane County, denying a territory subdivision's petition to disconnect from the Village of Campton Hills.

2009 Spring Session Roundup

By Jim Covington
August
2009
Column
Page 396
A summary of key legislation.

Counties Code amended to address public facilities. PA 095-1002

April
2009
Illinois Law Update
Page 174
The Illinois General Assembly amended section 5-1006.5 of the Counties Code by adding terms which address "public facilities" in the "Special County Retailers' Occupation Tax" provision.

Act authorizes school districts to release juvenile truancy records. PA 095-1016

March
2009
Illinois Law Update
Page 122
The Illinois General Assembly amended the Illinois Municipal Code by changing Sections 1-2.2-20 and 11-5-9. 65 ILCS 5/1-2.2-20, 11-5-9. 

Illinois Zoning Law Six Years after Klaeren

By George L. Schoenbeck
February
2009
Article
Page 84
Legislation and subsequent cases have resolved some ambiguities in the landmark Klaeren decision while giving rise to others.

Additional requirements on municipalities awarding waste collection franchises. PA 095-0856

January
2009
Illinois Law Update
Page 16
The Illinois Municipal Code has been amended by modifying section 5/11-19-1 to add new language concerning the awarding of waste collection franchises. 65 ILCS 5/11-19-1. 

The term “emergency” in the Employee Benefits Act encompasses a variety of situations

January
2009
Illinois Law Update
Page 16
On November 4, 2008, the Illinois Appellate Court, Second District, affirmed the judgment of the Circuit Court of Lake County finding that the plaintiff was entitled to benefits under the Public Safety Employee Benefits Act (Employee Benefits Act), 820 ILCS 320/1 et seq.

Changes made to requirements for local government health plan

December
2008
Illinois Law Update
Page 612
The Department of Central Management Services made a number of amendments to Title 80, Part 2160, relating to the Local Government Health Plan ("plan"). 80 Ill Adm Code 2160. 

Counties Code amended. PA 095-0805

December
2008
Illinois Law Update
Page 612
The Counties Code has been amended by adding section 42000 dealing with county ownership of a wind farm. 55 ILCS 5/42000. This new section provides that a county may "own and operate a wind generation turbine farm [wind farm]." 

Retalitory discharge: local governments not immune under Workers’ Comp Act

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
November
2008
LawPulse
Page 548
 Public employees can sue for being fired in retaliation for filing a workers' comp claim, the Illinois Supreme Court holds.

The Open Meetings Act v. client confidentiality

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
October
2008
LawPulse
Page 498
A trial court's search for truth and the public's right to know may conflict with what local governments believe to be their right to confidential communications with counsel.    

No discretionary immunity for retaliatory discharge of employee

June
2008
Illinois Law Update
Page 284
On April 17, 2008, the Illinois Supreme Court reversed the circuit court's holding barring the plaintiff's retaliatory discharge claim against the Waukegan Park District due to the District's immunity under the Local Governmental and Governmental Employees Tort Immunity Act (Tort Immunity Act), 745 ILCS 10/1-101 et seq.

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