Deputy Chief Jogmen awardState Senator Laura Murphy (D-Des Plaines) recognized Park Ridge Deputy Chief of Police Lou Jogmen for his work to promote rail safety, which recently earned him the national Green Cross for Safety Advocate Award.

“Deputy Chief Jogmen showed great leadership on this initiative and the inaugural Illinois Rail Safety Week,” Murphy said. “He is a shining example of the Park Ridge community, and I am honored to present him with this Illinois State Senate Certificate of Recognition for his work to promote public safety.”

The National Safety Council, a nonprofit that works to eliminate preventable deaths, presented the award to Jogmen this summer. This national award is given each year to one person who substantially influenced a safety issue using evidence-based practices and data to raise awareness and prevent further injuries and deaths.

“Unfortunately, despite all of the good work being done, Illinois traditionally found itself near the top of the list of states with regard to injuries and deaths on or near our railroads,” Jogmen, who has worked for the Park Ridge Police Department for nearly 24 years, said.

“The Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police Traffic Safety Committee set out to bring awareness to this issue and to improve the rail safety culture in Illinois by partnering with stakeholders and communities throughout the state, including my home community of Park Ridge.”

Jogmen is the Traffic Safety Committee chairman for the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police. He led the first Illinois Rail Safety Week in 2014, the model of which has since been used to promote awareness of distracted driving.

“The growing success of Illinois Rail Safety Week demonstrates how Illinois law enforcement can come together around a serious issue,” Jogmen said.

“It also serves to illustrate that Illinoisans are committed to making our state safer and stronger. I am happy to accept this recognition on behalf of the members of the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police Traffic Safety Committee and all of those individuals who have worked so tirelessly throughout Illinois to help keep our residents safe around our railroads.”

SPRINGFIELD – Legislation sponsored by State Senator Laura Murphy (D-Des Plaines) to protect individuals who speak out at public zoning appeal hearings from being sued was recently signed into law. Senate Bill 731 expands provisions regarding reviews of zoning board of appeals decisions to all municipalities, not just Chicago.

Senator Murphy on the Senate floor“Community members have a right to voice their opinions at zoning hearings without fear of being sued,” Murphy said. “Community input is an important aspect of zoning decisions. This legislation strengthens freedom of speech protections in reviews of zoning board of appeals decisions.”

Senate Bill 731 clarifies that only the zoning board of appeals and applicants that come before the board are considered a “party of record.” The legislation also states that notice must be provided to participants in a zoning hearing of their ability to intervene.

“I hope this law encourages more people to voice their concerns without fear of reprisal,” Murphy said.  

This legislation was developed following a constituent inquiry. It goes into effect on Jan. 1, 2018.

SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Laura Murphy (D-Des Plaines) issued the following statement on the Senate’s action to override Gov. Bruce Rauner’s amendatory veto of Senate Bill 1, a proposal to improve Illinois’ school funding system:

Senator Murphy on the Senate floor“Today I voted to override the governor’s veto and reform the school funding system so that all schools in the state are fairly and adequately funded and so that homeowners can enjoy meaningful property tax relief in the future. Illinois’ current system relies too heavily on local property taxes, burdening homeowners across the state.

“Gov. Rauner attempted to insert anti-business provisions into a school funding reform bill when he vetoed it. His changes would have shifted even more of the costs of funding schools onto property tax payers and hurt our communities’ economic development efforts.

“I could not support the governor’s efforts to burden the middle class and homeowners. I proudly voted to fix our school funding system so that schools are adequately funded without overly relying on property taxes.”

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Read more: Murphy pushes back against Rauner’s anti-business school funding veto

murphyheadshotSPRINGFIELD—State Sen. Laura Murphy (D-Des Plaines) issued the statement below after Gov. Rauner issued an amendatory veto of Senate Bill 1, a proposal that would change how Illinois schools are funded.

“Illinois has among the highest property taxes in the nation, with a majority of those local tax dollars going to schools. Reforming the school funding formula is the only serious way to provide homeowners with meaningful property tax relief.

“Gov. Rauner’s decision to veto Senate Bill 1, which shifts the burden of paying for schools from local property tax dollars onto the state, is truly disappointing. I continue to stand committed to working toward fixing a school funding system that will give homeowners meaningful property tax relief and provide adequate funding for our schools.”

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