• RSS News – Lou Lang

    • Illinois Rep. Lou Lang, left, and Gov. Bruce Rauner - Crain's Chicago Business (blog) August 5, 2015
      Chron.comIllinois Rep. Lou Lang, left, and Gov. Bruce RaunerCrain's Chicago Business (blog)Lou Lang—Skokie Democrat, harsh critic of GOP Gov. Bruce Rauner, deputy majority leader in Speaker Mike Madigan's House—happened to hit up that very same governor for a job for his daughter. Or, more accurately, a renewal of the part-time post she ...Rauner s […]
    • Looming deadline doesn't worry medical marijuana sponsor - Peoria Public Radio September 2, 2015
      Peoria Public RadioLooming deadline doesn't worry medical marijuana sponsorPeoria Public RadioState Representative Lou Lang -- a Skokie Democrat – says, while the deadline should have been met, panel has already received even more petitions for qualifying conditions. That includes some for the same ones the board previously approved.and more »
    • Four questions about the week's big heroin vote answered - Chicago Daily Herald September 1, 2015
      Chicago Daily HeraldFour questions about the week's big heroin vote answeredChicago Daily HeraldLou Lang, a Skokie Democrat, says he'll try to start overriding Rauner's veto in the Illinois House Wednesday. If he does, and the Senate follows in later weeks, the whole package becomes law despite the governor's objections. The vote could be […]
    • Chicago pols try to keep it all in the family - Crain's Chicago Business August 8, 2015
      Crain's Chicago BusinessChicago pols try to keep it all in the familyCrain's Chicago BusinessThat was the governor's response recently when I asked him about my report that as the state budget war developed last spring, House Deputy Majority Leader Lou Lang—a top lieutenant of Speaker Michael Madigan's—asked the Rauner folks if they could […]
    • Rauner dumps treatment from anti-heroin measure, citing cost - Chicago Tribune August 24, 2015
      WUIS 91.9Rauner dumps treatment from anti-heroin measure, citing costChicago TribuneLou Lang, D-Skokie. "The governor is taking the position that we can't afford to save these lives." Lang said it was too early to say if he will ask lawmakers to override Rauner's changes. Initial estimates pegged the cost of the legislation at $25 ...Lang […]
    • Erickson: Budget impasse could make for a long winter - Bloomington Pantagraph August 30, 2015
      Chicago Sun-TimesErickson: Budget impasse could make for a long winterBloomington Pantagraph... Senate and face a possible veto by Rauner. As Illinois moves from summer into fall, few lawmakers are holding out much hope for a quick solution. "I think we may still be here when it begins to snow," said Deputy House Majority Leader Lou Lang, D ...Eric […]
    • Illinois Medical Cannabis Community is a great resource - ChicagoNow (blog) August 31, 2015
      ChicagoNow (blog)Illinois Medical Cannabis Community is a great resourceChicagoNow (blog)Except that since the program still isn't up and running, Representative Lou Lang sponsored a bill to extend it another 18 months...YAY!...and we got 4 months...BOO! And because we are Illinois and special, we have some of the most stringent medical ...and more »
    • Ill. Gov. Removes Medicaid Coverage From Heroin Treatment Bill - Northwest Public Radio August 27, 2015
      Ill. Gov. Removes Medicaid Coverage From Heroin Treatment BillNorthwest Public RadioSCHAPER: Democratic State Representative Lou Lang says 80 percent of those seeking treatment for opioid dependence in Illinois could qualify for Medicaid coverage. And he notes that the federal government would actually pick up much of that cost.
    • State: Highland Park doctor 'phonied up medical marijuana papers' for medical pot - Chicago Sun-Times August 29, 2015
      Chicago Sun-TimesState: Highland Park doctor 'phonied up medical marijuana papers' for medical potChicago Sun-TimesLou Lang, D-Skokie, who championed the medical marijuana program, said he thinks the governor is being “shortsighted.” “I also believe he is trying to make it look like he cares about these patients, but in fact a four-month extension […]
    • Budget fight ices funds for roads - Herald & Review (blog) August 30, 2015
      WNIJ and WNIUBudget fight ices funds for roadsHerald & Review (blog)"I think we may still be here when it begins to snow," said Deputy House Majority Leader Lou Lang, D-Skokie. HIGHER POWER: High-level talks between legislative leaders and Rauner have done little to move the needle when it comes to finding a way out of ...Shaw: A way for Rauner […]
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Video: Lou Lang Says Illlinois House Human Services Budget Protects Vulnerable Illinois Residents

(Springfield, IL) — May 16, 2011. State Rep. Lou Lang (D-Chicago) has welcomed the new Illinois human services budget approved by the Illinois House of Representatives last week.

Lang, a House Deputy Majority Leader, said the $1.2 billion cut to human services program both provides necessary state austerity while securing vital services for vulnerable Illinois citizens.

State Rep. Sara Feigenholtz (D-Chicago), the Chair of the House Human Services Appropriations Committee, who drew praise from Lang, speaks about the human service budget cuts.

The House and Senate must reconcile competing Illinois budget versions before sending to Governor Pat Quinn‘s desk.

Chicago Tribune, State Journal-Register, Rockford Register Star Endorse Lou Lang’s Illinois Medical Marijuana Bill

(Chicago, IL) — May 5, 2011. In the past few days, Illinois’ leading newspapers have endorsed Illinois House Deputy Majority Leader Lou Lang‘s bill to legalize medical marijuana in Illinois.

Lang, a Democrat from suburban Skokie, has also won support for the measure from House GOP Leader Tom Cross (R-Owego), giving the legislation an important boost in the lower chamber.

The bill likely faces a vote today, according to Lang.

Here are the editorials:

Chicago Tribune

Therapeutic pot

The Illinois legislature is close to legalizing medical marijuana. Before you scream in protest, or launch into a Cheech and Chong joke, give this some consideration. Illinois could pass a model law for the rest of the country.

The Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis act, sponsored by Rep. Lou Lang (D-Skokie), could pass the House this week, thanks in large part to a change in position by House Republican leader Tom Cross (R-Oswego). The timing may finally be right.

The Senate approved a medical marijuana bill in 2009, but the House narrowly rejected it last January. A revised bill has gained the support of Cross, a former Kendall County prosecutor. He says he’s comfortable with the strict guidelines written into this version.

Read more …

Rockford Register Star

Our View: Legislators should vote yes on improved medical pot bill

Illinois lawmakers have crafted a medical marijuana bill that is precise, restrictive and should alleviate concerns of those who worry the drug will fall into the wrong hands.

House Bill 30, the Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act, may succeed where other legislation has failed.

Members of the Illinois House are expected to vote on the bill this week. We have supported previous incarnations of this legislation and think this one is the best yet. We hope representatives agree and vote yes.

HB 30 restricts who, how much and where patients can get medical marijuana. It would only be available for people who have debilitating diseases such as HIV/AIDS, cancer and multiple sclerosis and they must have a doctor’s prescription. Prescriptions would need to be renewed every two weeks, and the amount of the drug would be limited to 2.5 ounces.

Read more …

State Journal-Register

Our Opinion: OK revised medical marijuana legislation

Supporters of medical marijuana in Illinois got a big boost recently when House Minority Leader Tom Cross came over to their side.

Cross, R-Oswego, was among the 60 representatives on Jan. 6 who helped defeat the last medical marijuana bill, which fell just four votes shy of passage. He says he’ll support a new version of that bill.

We urge Cross’ House colleagues to do the same.

Why the change for Cross? For one thing, the new bill is more restrictive than its predecessor. But Cross also listened to people like Diane Harper of Shorewood, whose husband, Jeff, suffers from lymphoma and found relief from chronic nausea only from smoking marijuana. Jeff’s weight had fallen from 170 pounds to 111 when he began using marijuana to quell nausea. Now he’s up to 149.

“Do you know how sickening it is to tell your kids something they’re not supposed to do is necessary to keep their dad alive?

Read more …

Illinois Legislative Maps Are Not Yet Drawn, Lou Lang Says

(Skokie, IL) — April 24, 2011. Illinois House Deputy Majority Leader Lou Lang (D-Skokie) today attempted to squelch claims that maps have already been drawn in the Illinois redistricting process, saying such claims are “untrue.”

Noting that the Illinois House is conducting 15 state-wide redistricting hearings–11 more than required by law–Lang said, “There are some people in our communities who are claiming the maps have already been drawn. That is untrue.”

Lang said lawmakers are seeking map input from local communities and soliciting actual maps from citizens and interest groups.

“At my last hearing in Aurora, a witness claim that he had drawn the ‘perfect map’,” said Lang. “I asked him for the map, which he had colored in by pencil, but refused to submit the because he said ‘it still needs work'”.

The legislature is expected to approve the 118 state house, 59 state senate and the 18 congressional maps by May 31.

As a result of the U.S. census, Illinois is losing one of its 19 existing congressional seats under the new map.

Illinois House Advances Rep. Lou Lang’s Mental Health Parity Enforcement Plan

(Springfield, IL) – A legislative plan to put state enforcement power behind a new federal mental health parity law is advancing in the Illinois General Assembly.

The legislation, House Bill 1530, which the Illinois House approved, 79-32, on April 6, upgrades Illinois’ existing mental health insurance parity law to match federal requirements approved in July 2010 and to give the Illinois Department Insurance the power to enforce the federal standards.

“Federal enforcement is a more remote, lighter touch, relying on telephone calls and mail,” said House Deputy Majority Lou Lang (D-Skokie).

“By matching state law to the federal standards, the Illinois Insurance Department can enforce the federal standards more aggressively than the federal government could by virtue of state face-to-face enforcement activities.”

Lang noted that neither the federal nor state law mandate mental health insurance as defined benefit, but require mental health coverage if other health benefits are offered.

“The federal law does not require coverage for mental and emotional disorders, but does require parity if such coverage is offered for hospital or medical treatment,” said Lang.

In addition to bringing Illinois’s mental health law into compliance with federal standards, Lang’s bill also adds substance abuse treatment and autism care to the list of parity required health insurance benefits.

“Addiction health care and autism health care are vital parts of the broader field of behavioral health care,” said Lang. “And their inclusion as part of a insurance parity framework is critical.”

These provisions are applicable to any plan of a small employer (with 2-50 employees), according to Lang.

“Again, the law does not require coverage for mental, substance abuse or autism,” said Lang. “It only requires parity if other health care treatments are offered.”

Illinois Department of Insurance Director Michael McRaith has noted before an earlier House committee hearing that the independent U.S. Congressional Budget Office found that parity would only cause health insurance premiums to rise by 0.4 percent.

Moreover, research shows that patients that have completed substance use disorder treatment have been shown to reduce emergency room visits by 39%, hospital stays by 35% and total medical costs by 26%.

“House approval of this legislation is an important step toward bringing health insurance parity to addiction health care,” said Lang. “However, the Senate is another key legislative hurdle in the process.”

In addition to Lang, other House sponsors include State Reps: Robyn Gabel (D), William Davis (D), Naomi Jakobsson (D), Fred Crespo (D), Dave Winters (R), Al Riley (R), Sara Feigenholtz (D) Mary Flowers (D) Joe Lyons (D), Maria Antonia Berrios (D), Jack Franks (D), Keith Farnham (D), Linda Chapa LaVia (D), Camille Lilly (D), Cynthia Soto (D), Ann Williams (D), Elizabeth Hernandez (D), John D’Amico (D), Daniel Biss (D), Pat Verschoore (D), and Harry Osterman (D).

Rep. Lou Lang Backs Bi-Partisan Push to Cut Lawmaker Salaries 10%, Eliminate Raises

(Springfield, IL) — March 31, 2011. Illinois House Deputy Majority Leader Lou Lang (D-Skokie) is backing a bi-partisan effort by freshmen and veteran House lawmakers to permanently cut legislative salaries by 10% and abolish future cost-of-living raises.

Lang is sponsoring legislation, House Bill 2891, which was approved, 14-2, by the House State Government Administration Committee on March 2, 2011.

“In the current economic crisis, tens of thousands of Illinois workers have had their salaries frozen, cut or hours reduced  and have been forced to cut their household expenses while continuing to pay their taxes,” said Lang. “Lawmakers should lessen taxpayers’ burden by also cutting government expenses and share the same burden as regular workers by cutting our own salaries.”

“We should all be in this together.”

The bill’s chief sponsor is freshman lawmaker State Rep. Michelle Mussman (D-Schaumburg),

In addition to Lang and Mussman and House sponsors include State Reps.: Keith Farnham (D), Karen May (D), Richard Morthland (R), Dwight Kay (R), Adam Brown (R), Wayne Rosenthal (R), Fred Crespo (D), Jack Franks (D), Daniel Biss (D), Emily McAsey (D), Kenneth Dunkin (D), Michael Unes (R), Norine Hammond (R), Darlene Senger (R), Jason Barickman (R), Pam Roth (R), Thomas Morrison (R), Jil Tracy (R), Sandra Pihos (R) and Sara Feigenholtz (D)

The bill faces the full House for consideration.

The Southern Editorial Board Backs Lou Lang’s Bill to Add Slots at Illinois Horse-Race Tracks

(Skokie, IL) — The Southern newspaper editorial board yesterday ran an editorial endorsing House Deputy Majority Leader Lou Lang‘s legislation to add slot machines at Illinois horse-race tracks to boost the industry’s declining fortunes due to out of state track competitors which have slots.

Our View: Slot machines should be allowed at horse racing venues in Chicagoland to keep gambling revenue in Illinois and to revive a threatened horse racing industry.

Gambling generates significant revenue for the state of Illinois and host communities, but there are legitimate questions about the resulting financial and social costs of legal wagering – bankruptcies, foreclosures, broken families and ruined careers for problem gamblers.

Is it worth the cost? That’s a debatable point and, for that reason, this newspaper generally hasn’t championed plans for expanded gambling in Illinois. But there is a piece of legislation pending in Springfield that would both expand gambling opportunities, though not to a great extent, and is worth supporting.

House Bill 3107 would allow horse race tracks in the Chicago area to have slot machines. A similar bill failed last year, but the same sponsor, state Rep. Lou Lang, D-Skokie, is trying again. Lang believes the plan would create up to 1,500 jobs and rake in up to $400 million for the state.

Read the rest of editorial here …

Video: Who is Bill Brady?

(Chicago, IL) — October 13, 2010. After 17 years in the Illinois General Assembly and now the GOP nominee for governor, Illinois voters are asking: Who is State Senator Bill Brady (R-Bloomington)?

State Rep. Lou Lang (D-Skokie) helps to provide a few answers.

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