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SPRINGFIELD – A measure supported by State Senator Scott Bennett to help former foster children get in contact with their former families was signed into law Friday.

“Youth in the foster care system often become very close with their foster families before they are adopted,” said Bennett (D-Champaign), a co-sponsor of the legislation. “These kids deserve access to the family that cared for them as they transition to a new family.”

The new law creates a process allowing former foster children to get in contact with their former foster parents and siblings by utilizing existing search and reunion services provided by the Department of Children and Family Services. DCFS is required to provide youth in care with an explanation of available search and reunion services within 30 days of their 18th birthday.

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SPRINGFIELD – Students with disabilities and their families will receive more information on the resources available to them under a new law supported by State Senator Scott Bennett.

“Our state offers great resources for students with disabilities,” said Bennett (D-Champaign), a chief co-sponsor of the legislation. “We can further assist individuals with disabilities and their families by ensuring they are aware of all the financial services available to them.”

The Achieving a Better Life Experience program aims to encourage and assist individuals and families in saving private funds to support individuals with disabilities to maintain health, independence and quality of life. Additionally, the program provides secure funding for disability-related expenses to supplement insurance benefits and income.

Senate Bill 3474 requires school districts to provide informational material to the parents or guardians of students with disabilities about the ABLE account program.

“Caring for someone with a disability can become a heavy financial burden,” said Bennett. “The ABLE program sets students with disabilities up for success both in school and after graduation.”

The law is effective immediately.

energy

SPRINGFIELD – A new law incentivizing Illinoisans to purchase vehicles manufactured in-state was signed Friday with support from State Senator Scott Bennett.

“We have wonderful manufacturers right here in Illinois that offer a wide variety of high-quality vehicles,” said Bennett (D-Champaign). “Encouraging consumers to purchase vehicles that are manufactured in-state is an easy way to spark our statewide economy.”

The new law, originally Senate Bill 3609, offers Illinoisans the opportunity to apply for a $25 rebate on the title fee for cars and passenger trucks manufactured in Illinois. Consumers will have one year from the month the vehicle was manufactured to apply for the rebate.

“This law will help our local manufacturers and promote economic growth in our communities,” Bennett said. “Residents that buy a vehicle manufactured in-state will have money put right back into their pockets.”

The law takes effect Jan. 1, 2024.

welding student 020722SPRINGFIELD – A new law backed by State Senator Scott Bennett will give students more career options following high school graduation.

“Most high school students are funneled into two- or four-year universities,” said Bennett (D-Champaign). “Little thought is given to other paths toward adulthood, and students aren’t always fully aware of their options.”

The new law ensures students have more options for careers to pursue by requiring school counseling services to include Career and Technical Education to help students consider secondary education plans following high school.

Earlier this year, Bennett celebrated the importance of career and technical programs across the state by supporting an effort to designate the month of February as Career Technical Education Month in Illinois.

“College is a wonderful experience, but it should not be promoted at the expense of trade schools and skilled labor jobs,” said Bennett. “This law will make students aware of other career opportunities beyond graduation.”

The law, originally Senate Bill 3990, was signed into law Friday.

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