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  Wednesday, May 22, 2019     Recently, the PAC issued its fourth binding opinion of 2019, finding a public body in violation of the Open Meetings Act for failure to provide an adequate public recital of the business being conducted before taking final action on a resolution. PAC Op. 19-004. On January 28, 2019, at a Pinckneyville school district board meeting, the board voted on “Resolution 2019-1 authorizing a Notice to Remedy.” Shortly thereafter, a newspaper reporter filed a complaint with the PAC arguing that the board did not give any public details about the resolution prior to voting on…
Thursday, May 16, 2019     About this time each year, Illinois public bodies begin putting together their annual prevailing wage ordinances or resolutions to present to their boards and councils for approval in June so the ordinance or resolution can be filed with the Department of Labor by the July 15th statutory deadline of the Prevailing Wage Act. Not this year, though. As we reported previously, the Illinois General Assembly enacted P.A. 100-1177 to amend the Prevailing Wage Act to eliminate the requirement that public bodies adopt an ordinance or resolution to “ascertain” prevailing wages. That new law…
  Tuesday, May 14, 2019     Check out Ancel Glink Partner Dan Bolin’s appearance on #GovLoveLegal, a GovLove podcast hosted by ELGL and recorded live at the 2019 APA National Planning Conference. A description of the podcast is below and you can listen to the podcast here.   GovLove was recently at the National Planning Conference for a session all about right-of-way. Local governments hold the public right-of-way in trust for the benefit of the public; but rapid changes in technology, federal policy, and constitutional law are increasing demands for services and challenging local regulatory authority. Experienced local government attorneys, and…
Thursday, May 09, 2019       According to a recent Illinois case, the issuance of a building permit does not create a contract between an applicant and a municipality.  In 2008, Paul and Dana Mosier obtained a building permit from the Village of Holiday Hills to construct a garage, patio, and driveway on their property.  Five years later, the Mosiers were sued by McHenry County for constructing improvements within a regulatory flood-prone area without a County stormwater management permit.  In turn, the Mosiers sued the Village for breach of contract and violations of the Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business…
Wednesday, May 08, 2019       On May 4, 2019, Governor Pritzker and key legislators unveiled a long-anticipated proposal to legalize the use of cannabis for adults over the age of 21 under Illinois law (Amendment No. 1 to SB 7). The proposed law would allow residents over the age of 21 to possess up to 30 grams of cannabis and grow up to five plants per household. The Act prohibits the use of cannabis in public places including government buildings. While the draft legislation might be amended and still has to be approved by the General…
  Monday, May 06, 2019     “Sunshine Week” came and went this year without any fanfare from the Illinois Attorney General’s office. Typically, that is when the Public Access Counselor (PAC) publishes its annual report on OMA and FOIA complaints and training sessions. Although I didn’t see any press about the release of the 2018 annual report, it was issued and you can find a copy of the report on the AG’s website here.   As we have in the past, we’ve highlighted some of the findings and summaries here in case you don’t want to read through 39 pages
  Thursday, May 02, 2019     It’s Quorum Forum podcast’s first birthday party! We’re celebrating with the release of a new episode Episode 24: Local Government Procurement. In this episode, Ancel Glink attorney David Warner will summarize recent annexation cases from Municipal Minute. Then, Ancel Glink attorney Derke Price reviews what newly (and not-so-newly) elected officials need to know about local government procurement.  Questions about purchasing goods and services? Happy birthday wishes? Email us at podcast@ancelglink.com!…
  Tuesday, April 30, 2019     It’s important to note that this new law also comes with new enforcement powers for local governments. While the Department of Labor was previously responsible for enforcement of the Act, now enforcement is up to the “governmental entity regulating a business or establishment and local law enforcement agency having jurisdiction…” In most cases, the enforcing authority will be a municipality or other unit of local government. These new enforcement powers come with some practical problems.  First, the phrase “public gathering or special event that is conducted on property open to the public and requires…
Monday, April 29, 2019     Last week we reported on a 6th Circuit Court of Appeals opinion finding a city’s practice of chalking vehicles for parking enforcement to be an unconstitutional search under the Fourth Amendment. Just two days after the decision was issued, the 6th Circuit published an amended opinion, which you can read in its entirety at Taylor v. Saginaw. Unfortunately, the amended opinion did not change the Court’s ruling that the city’s chalking practice was unconstitutional.  It does, however, add the following new paragraph to the opinion’s conclusion:   Taking the allegations in Taylor’s complaint…
Friday, April 26, 2019     An Illinois appellate court ruled in favor of a municipality in a case involving an individual who was allegedly injured when she stepped into a pothole in the street while returning to her parked car. The City had argued that the individual was not an “intended and permitted” user of the street because she had parked her car 5 feet into a marked no-parking zone within 15 feet of a hydrant. She argued that most of her car was legally parked, and that the pothole was outside of the no-parking zone. The court agreed…
Wednesday, April 24, 2019     In a surprising decision out of the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, the court struck down a City’s practice of “chalking” the tires of parked cars to track how long they have been parked as part of the City’s parking enforcement program. Taylor v. City of Saginaw. Like many other municipalities across the country, the City of Saginaw, Michigan’s parking enforcement officers place chalk marks on the tires of parked cars, then return to the car after the posted time for parking has passed to see if the chalk marks are still there –…
  Monday, April 22, 2019     Last week, the Governor signed P.A. 101-004 amending the Counties Code regarding county regulation of wind farms and and other wind energy facilities. The new law expressly authorizes counties to establish standards for wind farms, wind devices, and wind energy facilities in unincorporated areas even if the county has not adopted a zoning ordinance. The law also provides that only counties are authorized to regulate wind farms, devices, and facilities in unincorporated areas and outside of the 1.5 mile radius surrounding a municipality. The bill was introduced to address a situation in Douglas County, where a…
  Thursday, April 18, 2019     The ability of Illinois municipalities to regulate billboards along interstate highways has been the subject of much litigation over the past few decades. These disputes usually center around the sometimes-conflicting provisions of the Highway Advertising Control Act of 1971 (“Highway Act”).  The Highway Act provides maximum size, spacing, and lighting restrictions for interstate highway billboards that are permitted by IDOT. However, the Highway Act also expressly authorizes municipalities to adopt more restrictive regulations for interstate highway billboards than those imposed by the Highway so long as the municipal regulations are consistent with “customary use.” Many…
  Wednesday, April 17, 2019     Last Friday, Governor J.B. Pritzker signed the Collective Bargaining Freedom Act (P.A. 101-003) barring local governments from establishing “right-to-work zones.” The new law takes effect immediately (April 12, 2019).  The Act provides that the state has exclusive authority to enact laws governing agreements between employers and unions that (i) spell out the extent to which workers can be compelled to belong to a union or and (ii) whether the employer will collect dues and fees on behalf of the union. The Act expressly prohibits any local government from enacting or enforcing any…
  Monday, April 15, 2019     Organizers of public gatherings on property open to the public have new responsibilities when it comes to posting notices under the Human Trafficking Resource Center Notice Act. Effective January 1, 2019, P.A. 100-0671 amended several sections of the Human Trafficking Resource Center Notice Act which adds to the list of entities that are required to post the notice under the Act. Specifically, the new law now requires the organizer of a public gathering conducted on property open to the public that requires a permit from a unit of local government to post a notice…