Illinois House Bill 5900 and Illinois Senate Bill 2965, better known as the Saving Illinois Pollinators Act, were introduced earlier this year in the 99th Illinois General Assembly. Both bills are in their early stages but have already added a significant amount of representative co-sponsors in both the Illinois House and Senate.
The bills are identical in their description and partially read as follows: Provides that beginning 9 months after the effective date of the Act, it shall be unlawful to apply any neonicotinoid insecticides on any public lands owned or maintained by Illinois. Provides that beginning 9 months after the effective date of the Act, it shall be unlawful to apply neonicotinoid insecticides in any other outdoor residential settings, including landscaping, ornamental, or other outdoor applications in Illinois.
The bills also leave room to adopt any rules to further define or implement provisions within the act.
As of the publication of this post, the bills have been referred to the Rules Committee in the Illinois House of Representatives, and to the Assignments Committee in the Illinois Senate. Both of these committees are made up of three members of the majority party (Democrat), and two members of the minority party (Republican). These five individuals from each committee decide if the bill will be assigned to one of the standing committees in each the House and Senate, and if so, which committee. If House Bill 5900 and Senate Bill 2965 are assigned to standing committees, they would most likely be assigned to the Environment Committee in both areas of the Illinois General Assembly.
During these Environment Committee hearings, the bill’s sponsors (Rep. Will Guzzardi in the House and Sen. Don Harmon in the Senate) explain the bills to the Environment Committee members. Individuals, including special interest groups, government agencies or private citizens can voice their opposition or support of a bill at this time. As of right now the Rules and Assignment Committee hearings for each bill have not been scheduled.