Representative Murphy this week continued his focus on much needed government and tax reform.
Rep. Murphy introduced House Bills 818 and 819, which will increase General Assembly accountability to taxpayers while saving money. HB 818 would ensure members of the General Assembly are paid for their first and last months in office only for days they actually served. Currently, lawmakers are paid the entire month’s salary even if they are sworn-in on the last day of the month, or step down from office on the first.
House Bill 819 will prohibit automatic cost of living adjustments (COLAS) for members of the General Assembly. Under current law, the Compensation Review Board recommends cost of living adjustment pay increases for members of the General Assembly and for state constitutional officers, which go into effect automatically unless both the House and Senate pass identical bills specifically to reject them.
House Bill 820, also filed this week, will help protect inherited property in Illinois, including family farms that are worked by the same family for generations. The new measure provides that, for persons dying on or after January 1, 2020, Illinois’ high inheritance tax would be reduced to match the lower, Federal level.
Rep. Murphy said he’s looking forward to working to move each bill through the House committee process in the coming weeks.
Rep. Murphy also introduced HJR 16 to establish a task force to study the feasibility of creating an employer-sponsored health clinic for State employees and dependents. Major companies across the country are creating on-site or near-site health clinics for their employees to address rising health care costs by providing many preventative health services as a way to avoid more serious health situations for employees.
Rep. Murphy believes the State of Illinois should study what the City of Springfield, Springfield School District 186, Sangamon County, and companies such as Amazon, Apple, and Horace Mann are doing with respect to this type of health option for their employees.
“The incentive of paying no co-pay for many routine, preventative health services is something the State needs to be looking at as we look to address the rising cost of group insurance for State employees. Companies and governments around the country are looking at this model to control costs and I think it would be wise for the new administration to study this issue in order to bring down costs of providing insurance for our employees.”
These types of clinics can reduce health costs for employers by paying a flat contracted rate between the clinic and the employer rather than paying much higher rates under health insurance plans.