Assistant Republican Leader C.D. Davidsmeyer (R-Jacksonville)
“Legislation signed today by Governor Pritzker and promoted on a whistle-stop campaign tour is not criminal justice. House Bill 3653 makes Illinois less safe and jeopardizes the safety of victims and law-abiding citizens.
“Now, police must ticket rather than arrest peeping-toms and trespassers. Police officers will only be allowed to pursue criminals if they pose an immediate threat to others. If not, they must let them go and hope to find them at a later date.
“Local governments are now required to purchase body cameras for each police officer, which the law enforcement community agrees with. However, this is an unfunded mandate from the state to local governments that will force them to raise taxes. They will not only need to pay for the cameras themselves, but for the years of storage for all of the video taken.
“Many of our smaller communities will be forced to make a decision to significantly raise taxes or get rid of their police protection altogether.
“Finally, criminals will no longer be required to pay bail to get out of jail. Prior to this bill, courts would use different factors to decide bail, including propensity to recommit a crime and ability to pay. Victims will be required to face their attacker sometimes within hours of their attack and will have no relief knowing their alleged offender will be let go almost immediately. The criminal will be back on the streets able to hurt someone else in a matter of hours.
“Governor Pritzker and the politicians who support HB 3653 have chosen to change the definition of crime, rather than putting forth effort to stop crime. This bill is a purely political dog-and-pony show that will not accomplish the goal of getting rid of bad law enforcement officers; rather, it will diminish the ability to keep the peace while giving criminals the upper-hand.”
State Sen. Jason Plummer (R-Edwardsville)
"The actions taken by the governor today have effectively made our communities less safe, defunded local law enforcement and endangered the safety of our families.
"Despite the overwhelming opposition voiced by citizens of this state and members of the law enforcement community, the governor has decided to continue his warped policy-making approach by refusing to allow Republican input in one of the most sweeping changes we have ever seen to our state's criminal justice system.
"We're already seeing the consequences of this bill emerge, with one central Illinois village disbanding their police department entirely as the cost burdens of the reform bill weighed heavily over their small community. The fact is, the governor is making it unaffordable for police forces to operate and even harder for our officers to do their jobs.
"House Bill 3653 is a terrible anti-law enforcement proposal that will have irreparable consequences for all Illinoisans, and I fear this is just the first of many so-called reforms from our governor that will threaten the safety of our state and pave the way for future criminal-friendly laws under this administration's leadership."
State Rep. Avery Bourne (R-Morrisonville)
Today Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed House Bill 3653 into law. This bill, opposed by every law enforcement organization in the state, will turn suspected criminals back on to the streets hours after being arrested, take away resources from local counties, set new costly mandates on law enforcement, and make it more difficult for law enforcement to perform their duties. This bill passed by one vote in the Illinois House of Representatives after a marathon all night session.
“This measure becoming law will increase crime and make Illinoisans less safe," Bourne said. "Governor Pritzker is prioritizing making life easier for criminals and making life more difficult for law enforcement.”
Some of the most concerning aspects of the legislation, authored and pushed by the Illinois Black Caucus, include the following:
* Abolishes cash bail, and removes ability of judges to hold someone who is considered a danger to the community.
* Allows for anonymous complaints to be used against police officers in disciplinary and decertification hearings.
* No ability for expungement of frivolous complaints
* Allows for victims of crime, regardless of age, to be compelled to testify at a bond hearing by the defense attorney.
* Costly mandates contained in the bill are especially harmful to our state’s smaller municipalities and could result in reduced police presence across Illinois.
* Bill language is unclear and contradictory, making it more difficult for law enforcement and the court system to do their jobs. For example, police certification allows for confidential and anonymous complaints.
* There is no transparency in the legislative process to work out the unintended consequences of this massive bill, which directly affects public safety in Illinois.
“As lawmakers, we need to make every effort to support our law enforcement officers and increase public safety efforts,” Bourne added. “Governor Pritzker has turned his back on law enforcement today — penalizing all of the good law enforcement who keep us safe every day.”
“I voted no. And, a bipartisan group of legislators voted against this terrible bill. This measure is out of step with what a majority of Illinoisans believe. Today, with this bill now becoming state law, their concerns are still valid: these sweeping changes to our criminal justice system will do more harm than good.”
The Illinois Sheriffs' Association, Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police, Illinois Fraternal Order of Police, and the FOP Labor Council also criticized the bill, warning, “The new law is a blatant move to punish an entire, honorable profession that will end up hurting law-abiding citizens the most. We urge all citizens to remember who supported this law, and keep that in mind the next time they look to the police in Illinois for the protection they can no longer provide.”
The end of cash bail as mandated in HB3653 will go into effect January 2023 while local municipalities will be on a rolling compliance schedule for the use of body cameras.