29102019CM0717

SPRINGFIELD – Minority owned businesses looking to participate in the Rebuild Illinois construction plan could soon find it easier to meet Business Enterprise Program (BEP) requirements under a proposal sponsored by Senator Napoleon Harris, III. (D-Harvey).

“Minority businesses have struggled from excessive bureaucracy, and it has forced them to miss out on state contracts,” Harris said. “This measure streamlines the BEP certification process to allow for more participation in the Rebuild Illinois program.”

The Department of Management Services (CMS) would be required to automatically certify companies as BEP companies if they are registered with the city of Chicago, Cook County or any other jurisdictions with equal or greater requirements for certification when compared to the BEP requirements.

The department would also need to create a model disparity study to be used by units of local government to examine their total number of minority owned companies and find ways to increase those numbers.

Senate Bill 177 also makes changes to the Illinois Apprenticeship Initiative by requiring contractors to utilize apprentices from the Illinois Pre-Apprenticeship Program on capital projects. Furthermore, it allows contractors to receive bid credits for utilizing apprentices from the Illinois Works Program.  

“Putting our local labor force to work through this significant state investment is one of the goals of the Rebuild Illinois plan, and that’s why it’s important to tap into the Illinois Apprenticeship Initiative,” Harris said.

Under the measure, participants of the Illinois Works Pre-Apprenticeship Program would receive a stipend or compensation while in the program.

Category: Press Releases

27102019CM0168

SPRINGFIELD - State Senator Napoleon Harris III (D-Harvey) urged lawmakers across the county to continue pressuring the NCAA to allow student athletes to receive compensation for the use of their names, images, and likenesses. Though the NCAA announced it is planning to make changes, Harris is skeptical.

“The NCAA put out a letter to stall lawmakers because they were losing the power of being in control of every aspect of student athletes,” Harris said. “I will not be applauding them for doing nothing and will continue to work on my legislation to show that I am not trusting them to do what’s right.”

Harris is the sponsor of Senate Bill 2278, allowing student athletes at Illinois colleges and universities to receive compensation from the use of their name, image, or likeness – a practice currently prohibited by the NCAA.

Category: Press Releases

SPRINGFIELD – Student athletes at Illinois colleges and universities would receive compensation from the use of their name, image, or likeness under a measure sponsored by Senator Napoleon Harris III (D-Harvey). Currently, college athletes cannot receive compensation for participating in the sports other than scholarships.

"I played college football for four years, and I remember the many times when my family couldn’t afford things we needed and wanted," Harris said. "However, on game days, the stadiums were packed, and university was making millions of dollars."

Senate Bill 2278 would also prohibit athletic association or conference from preventing a school or a student from participating in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and will not affect the student's scholarship eligibility. Ultimately this measure will ok student-athletes to generate profits for themselves through the use of their names and likenesses, such as in video games.  

The legislation would also help Illinois stay competitive with other states, like California. On September 30, 2019, California's governor a similar law, which may make that state more appealing to student athletes.

"During my time at Northwestern, I saw a lot of my jerseys with my name on them in the stands, and I didn’t make a dime from those jersey sales," Harris said. "This legislation is not just about money, it's about rights. We need to protect the rights of student athletes.”

Harris is also a co-sponsor of House Bill 3904, an identical bill moving in the Illinois House.

Category: Press Releases

Harris052317SPRINGFIELD- State Senator Napoleon Harris III (D-Harvey) released the following statement after supporting a number of measures approved in the Senate today that would enact a full balanced budget for the first time in nearly two years:

“Our governor promised to shake things up, and that is exactly what he has done. Our state has fallen into disarray without leadership from the executive branch. Today, we took a step toward repair by approving a plan that brings relief and predictability to people who desperately need it.”

Category: Press Releases
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Contact Info

Springfield Office:
Senator 15th District
M113 Capitol
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-8066

District Office:
1350 E. Sibley Blvd., Suite 403
Dolton, IL 60419
(708) 893-0552
(708) 566-4108 FAX