Friday, August 24, 2018 || By Michael Romain || @maywoodnews
Featured image: Sen. Kimberly Lightford (4th). |
Two bills that were sponsored by state Sen. Kimberly Lightford (4th), the assistant majority leader who represents most of Proviso Township, were signed into law this week by Gov. Bruce Rauner.
One of the laws would reduce the penalties associated with driving with a suspended license while the other would implement a pilot program that allows parenting courses to be included in high school health education curriculum.
According to a statement released by Senate Democrats, Lightford’s traffic-related bill, which the governor signed on Aug. 21, would “reduce penalties from a Class A misdemeanor to a traffic citation for individuals driving with a suspended license due to unpaid parking fines, automated camera enforcement or unpaid child support.”
Currently, people who drive with a suspended or revoked license or permit may be charged with a Class A misdemeanor, which can result in up to a year in jail — the same penalty for someone whose license was suspended for a DUI.
Lightford’s measure, House Bill 3920, “allows an individual to receive three citations for driving with a suspended license for parking fines, automated camera enforcement or unpaid child support before it becomes a Class A misdemeanor,” according to the statement.
“There is a big difference between not having enough money to pay bills and irresponsibly putting lives in danger. They should be penalized accordingly,” Lightford stated.
The law goes into effect on Jan. 1, 2019.
“Putting people in jail for being too poor to pay parking fines or child support is counterproductive,” Lightford stated. “We should be focused on helping people get on their feet instead of making life even harder for them.”
Another proposal sponsored by Lightford, which Rauner signed into law on Aug. 23, “would implement a pilot program to make parenting courses part of the health education curriculum for high school students,” according to a statement put out by Senate Democrats.
“We currently do not offer courses that teach young people about raising children and having healthy relationships as adults,” Lightford stated. “These lessons are important in making sure our young people are making responsible decisions.”
House Bill 4442 requires the State Board of Education “to administer a three-year pilot program providing support to school districts that utilize a unit of instruction on parenting education.”
The program would start in the 2019-20 school year and would touch on a variety of subjects, such as child abuse prevention, parenting education and interpersonal relationships, among others. The law goes into effect on Jan. 1, 2019. VFP
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