State Representative Tom Morrison (R-Palatine) announced today that the Governor’s office on Management and Budget (GOMB) has signed off on the release of State funds to assist William Hainey Harper College with heating system repairs throughout the 200-acre Palatine campus.

According to Morrison, the existing steam and condensate piping, valves and supports are failing and require replacement to maintain the integrity of the heating system that provides heat and hot water to the entire campus. “A failure of this system would result in the campus being closed until repairs are completed,” said Morrison. “With cold weather right around the corner, it is imperative that the repairs take place without delay.”

The total project cost is estimated at $1,057,083 and the college has agreed to pay $436,013 while the State pays the remaining $621,070.

The Harper College project allocation is part of $11.3 million in project funds that were released for use this week by community colleges throughout Illinois. Last week the State announced a $900,000 allocation to Harper College for improvements to the Engineering and Technology Center. Additional funds for other community college capital projects are expected to be announced in the coming weeks.
Approximately 50 taxpayers from the 54th Legislative House District attended a free property tax forum in Palatine on Thursday that was sponsored by State Representative Tom Morrison (R-Palatine). Those in attendance learned about the tax assessment process and how to challenge an assessment that is believed to be inaccurate.

Morrison was joined at the event by Cook County Board of Review member Dan Patlak and Palatine Township Assessor Terry Kelly. Together they spoke to residents and explained the process that ties the value of their homes to the eventual tax bill that arrives in their mailboxes. The community leaders also outlined the exemptions that can be used to lower assessments and the steps required for appealing an assessment. Following the presentation, Morrison, Patlak and Kelly took questions from audience members.

“It was a pleasure to partner with Dan Patlak and Terry Kelly for this successful event,” said Morrison. “The procedure utilized to create assessments and tax bills can be confusing, and I was glad to offer a program where people could learn about the process, ensure they are receiving all eligible exemptions, and have their other questions answered. Everyone left with a better understanding of the process.”

Morrison said he would be hosting another property tax forum this fall.
Up to $900,000 in in capital funding has been released to benefit William Rainey Harper College in Palatine as part of the Fiscal Year 2019 capital budget approved by lawmakers in late May. The capital program was appropriated as part of the current Fiscal Year 2019 state budget.

“William Raney Harper College is known nation-wide for their excellence in education,” said Gov. Bruce Rauner. “This capital investment will help the college to build a state of the art, world class Engineering and Technology Center that will draw the best and brightest students. It is another example of how we are investing more in higher education to better prepare our students for the 21st century economy.”

The funds allocated to Harper College will be used for renovations and other improvements to the community college’s Engineering & Technology Center. The Center opened in 2014 and houses enhanced facilities to accommodate the growing demand for career training programs that lead directly to jobs such as manufacturing, welding, architectural technology, heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), maintenance technology, law enforcement and fire science.

“These dollars are key investments in the infrastructure of Illinois' institutions of higher education. Harper's Engineering and Technology Center is leading the way down a relatively new path in keeping Illinois' cutting-edge and top-notch workforce,” said State Senator Tom Rooney (R-Rolling Meadows). “The state fulfilling its commitment to Harper is an important step in serving the students, residents, and businesses of the 27th District.”

“Industry in the Northwest suburbs needs qualified, capable employees, and this resource center helps provide the necessary training for people to fill these jobs and grow the Illinois economy,” said State Representative Tom Morrison (R-Palatine). “This area pays a lot in income and property taxes, and I am pleased to see nearly a million dollars in State funds coming back to an institution that serves so many families in the 54th District and beyond.”

Having been approved, the Comptroller now has authority to release the funding to Harper College to complete improvements to the Engineering & Technology Center once costs begin to be incurred.

The Fiscal Year 2019 capital initiatives appropriated in the final budget included $100 million to address needs of higher education facilities, including the funding necessary to complete ongoing construction and repair projects, as well as financing to begin new maintenance and infrastructure improvement projects.
State Representative Tom Morrison (R-Palatine) has been named a “Champion of Free Enterprise” by the Illinois Chamber of Commerce for his voting record in support of the Illinois business community. Morrison also won the award based on his voting record in 2015-2016.

“It is a privilege to accept this award,” said Morrison. “Illinois needs a healthy economy to survive and thrive. My votes on behalf of those who create jobs and drive our state’s economy are reflected in this award. As a third generation small business owner, I appreciate the opportunity to be an advocate in the legislature.”

When scoring, the Chamber was looking for a “no” vote on the 32% tax increase, proposed red tape for call center operators, an electricity rate increase, expensive regulations to Internet web site operators, a $15 minimum wage, a gross receipts tax on investment management services and insincere workers’ compensation reform. The Chamber was looking for a “yes” vote on legislation that bring Illinois to the forefront of 5G Internet, state preemption of autonomous vehicles, and comprehensive procurement reform. Click here to view a summary of all bills that were scored.

“Representative Tom Morrison is a strong advocate for the business community and recognizes that pro-growth reforms lead to more jobs and a healthier economy,” said Todd Maisch, President and CEO of the Illinois Chamber of Commerce. “Representative Morrison was a vocal opponent of the 32% income tax hike that took money out of every working Illinoisan's pocket, and he continues to fight for the Illinois taxpayer, including the job creators who further economic opportunities for everyone in this state.”

“Creating jobs and promoting business growth is vital to the future success of our state,” said Morrison. “As a legislator, it is a policy area I have always taken very seriously.”