Grand Bargain Update
The budget discussions are still ongoing. A separate budget proposal was introduced this week by Senator Bill Brady that would provide for a balanced budget. It is important to keep the conversations related to the budget moving by putting forth ideas on how to end the impasse. I am urging my colleagues in the House to join the discussions so we can pass a balanced budget as quickly as possible and get it to the Governor’s desk so he can sign it into law. We can only end this impasse by bringing Republicans and Democrats together in a bipartisan manner. The longer we put off passing a balanced budget the more difficult the choices will be for climbing out of the financial hole we are currently in. I am prepared to take the tough votes that are necessary to end the gridlock and move our state forward.

St. John’s Nursing Students
 I had the wonderful opportunity to speak with over 35 nursing students from St. John’s College of Nursing this week to discuss legislation important to nurses and the healthcare industry. I was inspired by the students’ passion for their work and dedication to quality patient care. 

Grant Middle School
I was happy to recognize student-athletes from the Grant Middle School 7th Grade Boys Basketball Team for winning the State Championship this year. The team’s hard work and dedication has paid off.
In this edition of “Under the Dome” Rep. Jimenez offers a look at the "Blue Room" in the Capitol Building where press conferences are typically held. Click below to watch.


Grand Bargain Update
As we are about to end the 22nd month without a full and complete budget, it is more urgent now than ever before for Republicans and Democrats to work together to end the budget impasse by passing a balanced budget. Every day that we fail to act more and more vendors are waiting even longer to be paid for services provided to the State. This is unacceptable. I will continue to call upon my colleagues in the House and Senate and the Administration to negotiate a path to end the budget crisis. We can pass a balanced budget through a combination of cuts, reforms, and revenue.

These are not going to be easy choices, but we must work together in a bipartisan manner so we can end the impasse and put in place pro-growth policies that will allow our businesses to thrive and create good paying jobs for years to come.


Computer Banc
I was honored to join Computer Banc and Governor Rauner on Wednesday to announce a partnership between the Computer Banc and the State of Illinois that will provide refurbished computers to school districts around the state for a modest fee. I have been working with the Computer Banc over the last year to figure out a way to allow Computer Banc access to some of the state's surplus computers for a fee to refurbish them so schools can utilize technology in the classroom. Learn more about this neat, new initiative here.
In this week's Under the Dome video, Rep. Jimenez takes you on a tour of the House Gallery where you can watch the action in person on days when the House is in session.


Rep. Jimenez with Computer Banc Executive Director David Fowler
Computer Banc is teaming up with State Representative Sara Wojcicki Jimenez, other area lawmakers, and state officials and agencies to help improve children’s access to digital literacy tools. The pilot program aims to repurpose surplus government computers to provide children low cost learning tools for education readiness both at school and at home. Rep. Jimenez (R-Leland Grove) said she is excited to work with Computer Banc on its idea to get more computers to schools at a low cost and help children access vital technology.

Grand Bargain Update
The Senate is still in discussions on the grand bargain that could potentially bring an end to the budget impasse. It is so important for our area and the state of Illinois that we end the budget impasse as quickly as possible and get our State on the path of fiscal responsibility. I will continue to press my colleagues in the House and Senate to work together in a bipartisan manner to end the impasse and pass a truly balanced budget that will help grow our economy and put our state on the right path for years to come.

Local, brave mom fights for her family
News Channel 20 did a story this week on a courageous family from the 99th District that is pushing for reforms to the Department of Corrections that will prohibit inmates convicted of sexual offenses against minors from possessing photos and images of minors while they are incarcerated. HB 806 is a common sense bill that will protect families and children from having to continue to be victimized while the offender is in prison. I have been working with the Department to craft language that will allow the Department to enforce this prohibition in a responsible manner. You can view the story here.
In this installment of "Under the Dome" Rep. Jimenez talks about the House Committee process, and how you can follow a piece of legislation through the process in the Capitol Committee rooms or online.

Grand Bargain
While the House was in recess last week, Senators made another attempt to pass several bills included in the budget “Grand Bargain” they have been negotiating for the past several months. As you know, all of the bills included in the package must be passed and signed into law for any to take effect. There has been some difficulty in recent weeks in securing the votes needed to pass some of the measures through the Senate, but I am encouraging members of both parties and the Governor to continue negotiating a bi-partisan compromise solution.

State Employee Pay
I was proud to stand with my colleagues this week urging bipartisan support for a bill that would
ensure that state employees continue to get paid for their work, as Attorney General Lisa Madigan takes to the state Supreme Court her push to halt employee pay during the budget impasse.

I am a chief co-sponsor of House Bill 2803 which would make state employee pay a continuing budget appropriation, making sure employees would be paid for the work they do despite our budget difficulties. The legislation could receive a hearing in the House State Government Administration Committee on March 15th.
In this edition of "Under the Dome" Rep. Jimenez discusses which communities and neighborhoods are included in the 99th House District, and how you can find out in which area House District you reside. Click below to watch.

 
http://www.ilhousegop.org/jimenez_petition
 State Representative Sara Wojcicki Jimenez is pushing legislation to open up the primary process. Rep. Jimenez has introduced House Bill 3655 which would include all primary election candidates on a single ballot, ending the current multiple-ballot system that requires voters to publicly declare which political party they support.

“As voters, we are guaranteed that our vote is confidential, but having to declare our political party preference in order to receive a primary ballot may actually discourage some from voting at all,” Representative Jimenez said. “Many residents in Sangamon County have talked to me about their concerns about declaring their party.  Opening up the process will protect privacy, and it will also provide voters with a wider range of options on their primary ballot.”