pacione zayas guzzardi tarverSPRINGFIELD – To ensure families with limited economic resources have access to affordable, permanent housing, State Senator Cristina H. Pacione-Zayas is the Senate sponsor of new legislation to provide increased funding for the Rental Housing Support Program.

“Without affordable housing options, folks may lose their jobs, be displaced from their community and separated from their families,” said Pacione-Zayas (D-Chicago). “It is imperative that we continue to invest in affordable housing programs so that we increase access all over the state, and this initiative takes the first steps to do just that.”

Since 2005, the Rental Housing Support Program has provided rental assistance to households by subsidizing rental apartments and homes. As a participant in this program, a family with very limited economic resources has their rent subsidized through a contract with private landlords and RHSP to close the gap between what they can afford and market rate rent. RHSP paying the difference allows building owners to offer housing for families with limited economic resources and still meet their ownership costs. The program currently houses over 4,000 families across the state, and with this increase in the funding stream, thousands more could benefit. community land trusts cpz

Under current law, the RHSP’s funds are collected from fees to county clerk offices for requesting real estate documentation. However, these fees and the percentage of the fee that goes to the RHSP, have not been increased since the program’s inception in 2005, limiting RHSP’s impact, especially more so with inflation. The initiative will increase these fees, as well as the amount of the fee that goes toward the Rental Housing Support Program. It will also create a task force to ensure rental housing support funds will be distributed equitably across the state and prioritize communities that historically have not been able to take full advantage.

State Representative Curtis Tarver is the lead House sponsor of the bill. “I think it is reasonable that those of us who are fortunate enough to purchase a home to allot an additional $10 to ensure others have the ability to be housed,” said Tarver (D-Chicago).

“Housing is a human right,” Pacione-Zayas said. “With rising costs of rent and underfunded programs, too many people are not afforded this fundamental need. Increasing funding for the Rental Housing Support Program will increase access to housing and is another tool we have to address the affordable housing crisis across the state.”

House Bill 3878 passed both houses on January 6, 2023. It now goes to the governor’s desk to become law.

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Attached photos:  Rep. Tarver, Rep. Guzzardi- commemorates the passage of HB3878 in the House and Senate; Group Photos with Palenque LSNA - group includes Christian Diaz, Director of Housing, and LSNA youth to discuss a campaign for $5 million for the Here to Stay Community Land Trust. This investment is vital for addressing the affordable housing crisis in our state and for supporting the most vulnerable members of our community. 

 

 

Category: Press Releases

Estimado amigo,

Espero que se encuentre seguro, feliz y saludable durante las celebraciones de este año. Estoy disfrutando el tiempo que estoy pasando con mi familia en estos días de fiesta, y espero que usted lo haga también, que se proteja del frio y resguardado durante la tormenta invernal.

Para observar los días de fiesta, mi oficina estará cerrada del 19 de diciembre al 2 de enero. Mi equipo regresará a la oficina el 3 de enero para asistir con servicios a mis representados en el año nuevo.

A pesar de que estoy pasando tiempo con mi familia, me da gusto compartir con usted recursos estatales que están para ayudar a personas como usted. Por favor lea para informarse sobre las posibilidades que le pueden beneficiar, cómo puede participar en el proceso de elaboración de políticas públicas para el distrito 20 y más.

Como siempre, siéntase en libertad de comunicarse con mi oficina en busca de asistencia llamando al 773-278-2020, mandando un mensaje de texto al 773-207-7838, o enviando una nota a través de www.senatorpacionezayas.com/contact-us.

Sinceramente,

Senadora Estatal Cristina Pacione-Zayas | Distrito 20

 

Oportunidades laborales en el distrito 20 y en el área

Revise mi webpage para ver las oportunidades de trabajo en Chicago y en el Distrito 20. Ahí, podrá ver los enlaces a empleos con el Estado de Illinois, las Escuelas Públicas de Chicago, organizaciones locales y más.

Centros para Protegerse del Frio

A pesar de que la nieve puede ofrecer condiciones divertidas y festivas para algunos, también presenta preocupaciones de salud para muchas personas que no tienen acceso a calefacción confiable en su hogar. Si usted o un ser querido necesita ir a un centro para protegerse del frio o refugios durante esta temporada, estos centros estarán abiertos cuando la temperatura sea menor a 32 grados:

  • Englewood Center, 1140 W. 79th St.
  • North Area Center, 845 W. Wilson Ave.
  • Garfield Center, 10 S. Kedzie Ave.: Este centro abre 24 horas al día, siete días de la semana, para poner en contacto a la gente con un refugio de emergencia.
  • South Chicago Center, 8650 S. Commercial Ave.
  • King Center, 4314 S. Cottage Grove Ave.
  • Trina Davila Center, 4312 W. North Ave.

Ayuda disponible para abuso de sustancias

www.StartYourRecovery.org fue desarrollado reuniendo a expertos en tratamientos en abuso de sustancias de entidades sin fines de lucro, la academia e instituciones del gobierno.  A través de este recurso, las personas pueden escuchar historias de otros individuos con experiencias similares, encontrar las respuestas que necesitan para reconocer y lidiar con el desorden de abuso de sustancias, así como apoyo local.

Evite los fraudes que prometen alivio en deuda estudiantil

Como ha sido reportado, hay un plan en progreso para ofrecer alivio de una sola ocasión a la mayoría de la deuda estudiantil federal. Bajo este plan, quienes tienen deudas en poder del Departamento son elegibles hasta por $20,000 en alivio para quienes reciben una Beca Federal Pell, y hasta $10,000 a quienes no cuentan con una beca Pell, en el caso que el individuo tenga un ingreso menor a los $125,000, o a los $250,000 en su hogar.

La División Federal de Ayuda a Estudiantes del Departamento de Educación de los Estados Unidos ha compartido esta página con recursos para evitar fraudes.

Programa de Reembolsos a Vehículos Eléctricos

Los residentes de Illinois que compren un vehículo totalmente eléctrico nuevo o usado en un concesionario con licencia en Illinois son elegibles al Reembolso a Vehículos Eléctricos de Illinois:

  • Un reembolso de $4,000 en la compra de un vehículo totalmente eléctrico que no sea motocicleta.
  • Un reembolso de $1,500 en la compra de una motocicleta totalmente eléctrica.

Los compradores deben solicitar este reembolso durante el ciclo abierto para este fin en los 90 días posteriores a la compra del vehículo. Las formas para la solicitud deben tener el sello postal que no pase del 31 de enero de 2023. Más información sobre cómo solicitar AQUÍ.

Programa de Fondos para Banda Ancha “Connect” de Illinois

 

El acceso a la banda ancha es crucial para los hogares, negocios y para las instituciones comunitarias, por lo que Connect Illinois está buscando cerrar la brecha digital. Las solicitudes al programa de fondos para banda ancha serán ordenadas en tres categorías: Acceso a Banda Ancha en áreas con poco servicio, Innovación en Banda Ancha para el desarrollo económico, Banda Ancha Urbana para ampliar su acceso. $350 millones en total están disponibles con fondos individuales máximos de $10 millones. Las solicitudes serán aceptadas hasta 2024, o hasta que haya fondos AQUÍ.

Category: Newsletters

Yesterday marked my 2-year anniversary representing the 20th District as your State Senator in the Illinois General Assembly. I can’t help but reflect proudly on all accomplished during this time, and look ahead to what we will continue to in Springfield and across the district advancing the people’s agenda of the 20th District.

When I was sworn in on December 21, 2020, our community was in the midst of the first year of a global pandemic that deepened economic hardship, weakened our health care system, disrupted in-person learning for schools, and resulted in many lives lost and traumatized. Because I had been involved in mutual aid work with The Puerto Rican Agenda and Illinois Unidos, I was clear that my charge would grow in both crisis response and long-term solution development. However, I was very clear that that work would lean into the wisdom of the community because those closest to the problems often have the best solutions.

In January 2021, I launched the first arm of a co-governance model that would be a mechanism or accountability to constituents and aid in demystifying government with community members through monthly virtual town hall meetings. Each month we shared information on development of the state response to the pandemic, any economic relief we were able to provide, and a report back on progress made with legislative proposals in Springfield. Despite the stress and deep personal loss many of us were experiencing, I look back on memories of the start of my term with a sense of gratitude because I was able to establish bidirectional channel of communication between government and folks in my district. At the onset of my term, I set a standard of direct and open communication between my office and community members, and I am proud to uphold this standard in my service today.

In the statehouse, I hit the ground running with a progressive agenda focused on early childhood care and interventions, empowering local school governance, housing stabilization, and supporting the early childhood workforce. I addressed a critical shortage in early childhood educators by sponsoring legislation, House Bill 2878, to provide streamlined pathways to college degrees for those already working in the field with a $200 million investment in scholarships and supports to upskill more than 5,000 professionals across the state. I also led an initiative to waive spring testing requirements for Illinois students in acknowledgment of the historically difficult year young people in particular have had during the pandemic, which has upended day-to-day life in schools. We celebrated the passage of Senate Bill 101 that empowered the local school councils of Chicago Public Schools by expanding student representation and restoring powers to ensure that site-based management teams can truly function as democratic mechanism to ensure local accountability. We also passed my bill, Senate Bill 1833, which created the first in nation the state designated cultural districts in Illinois, which will affirm the unique cultural identity of Illinois communities and preserve their distinct legacies by spurring economic development without displacement.

During 2021, I was proud to uplift the legislative agenda set by the Illinois Black Caucus, who embarked on an ambitious plan to dismantle systemic racism in the state of Illinois. I supported legislation that aimed to reform four key pillars of Illinois of government: criminal legal system; education and workforce development; economic access, equity, and opportunity; and health care and human services. One of these laws was the Pretrial Fairness Act that abolishes the cash bail system and prohibits individuals accused of crimes from being detained before their trial simply because they can’t afford bail. This legislation is one of the most monumental laws to come from the statehouse, and addresses the ways Black and Latine Illinoisians have disproportionately suffered under the criminal legal system.  I am proud that we were able to uphold the initial intent of the Pretrial Fairness Act through Veto session, and that I was a part of the immense effort from people from all sectors to get this legislation passed and stand for justice in our state. It is the first of many steps towards ending systemic racism and classism in the criminal legal system, and I look forward to continue the work addressing these issues when we return to Springfield.

In 2022, I spearheaded the Too Young to Test Act, Senate Bill 3986, to prohibit the Illinois State Board of Education from developing or administering standardized tests for the state’s youngest children from Pre-K through second grade. Additionally, I advanced measures to provide students with more options after high school graduation and help the state address the ongoing teacher vacancy issue. Senate Bill 3990 requires school counseling services to include Career and Technical Education to help students consider secondary education plans following high school, while Senate Bill 3988 lowers the age for paraprofessionals in Pre-K through eighth grade classrooms to 18 years old, rather than 19.

Building on last year’s legislation to allow for the designation of cultural districts throughout the state, I spearheaded House Bill 5581, which designates a section of Milwaukee Avenue from Sangamon Street in Chicago to Greenwood Road in Niles as the Milwaukee Avenue Polish Heritage Corridor. I also championed Senate Bill 3991 to allow the state treasurer’s office to supplement CSAs for financially insecure households with additional funds and secured $2.5 million in the budget to make $50 seed deposits for every newborn starting January 2023.

Beyond my work in Springfield, I am proud of the district office team that has provided a variety of services to constituents. Through our district health navigator, we partnered with local health clinics to use my district office on the northwest side of Chicago as a near-weekly vaccination clinic, getting over 2,200 vaccines into the arms of residents in the area, as well as collecting and distributing N95 and KN95 masks to children during the height of the Omicron surge. I also launched the first-ever Early Childhood Resource Fair with neighboring Senator Omar Aquino to help direct members of the community to the resources that are available to them – setting their kids up for academic and personal success. I have loved the opportunity to connect members of the community to vital resources around them through our Back to School and Fall Health Fairs, District Office Open Houses, and Blood Drives, and look forward to continuing this practice with more events in 2023!

I am also proud to have watch the evolution of our second arm of operationalizing our co-governance model by inviting members of my constituency into the policy making process and ensure their ideas are heard and translated into action in Springfield. Our Policy Roundtable program focuses on recruiting stakeholders who live or work in the 20th District to lend their expertise and lived experience on the issue areas of small business and the workforce, health, housing, violence prevention, environment, and education. These roundtables met throughout the 102nd General Assembly and gave community members the opportunity to define priorities, raise issues, and discuss solutions that are most impacting them and their loved ones. I left these meetings invigorated and proud that I can champion these issues with a collective group of constituents rooted in problem solving, community wisdom, and active engagement.

Additionally, I am thrilled that the third arm of our co-governance model is anchored in offering space for young activists in our community to get involved in the legislative process. In 2022, I started the 20th District Youth Advisory Council to encourage young people to get involved in the policymaking process. Aside from collecting feedback from their peers, researching policy solutions, and translating it into proposals for me to advance in Springfield, they have represented our office at various community events and literally brought services and resources to neighbors’ doors by canvassing throughout the district.

As your State Senator, I am deeply committed to deepen our shared governance model and seek your partnership to ensure that your perspective is included in policymaking. I cannot wait to see what we are going to accomplish together in the next year serving you as your state Senator. Wishing you and our loved ones a safe, healthy, and warm holiday season.

Category: News

After the sudden passing of State Senator Scott Bennett (D-Champaign), Senator Pacione-Zayas released the following statement:

"I am heartbroken at the news of Senator Bennett’s passing. As vice chair for the Higher education committee, we worked closely together to increase access and equity to institutions of higher education. His commitment to deep understanding of the issues and solving for problems that limit participation of all communities was something we both shared and lifted up in our committee work. His sense of humor was unmatched, and his love and commitment to his family was even greater. We swapped stories about our kids and how best to support their development, and I’m grateful for his suggestion to take the kids to the amazing indoor ferris wheel at Scheels during one of the times I had them with with me in Springfield. I will always cherish these memories of Scott, and am thankful for how much joy and humor he brought into my life and the lives of so many. We will miss him dearly in the Senate, and we are all sending our deepest condolences to his family."

Category: Press Releases

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Office Information

Springfield Office:

Stratton Office Building
Section F, Room H
Springfield, IL 62706

 

District Office:
3140 W. Montrose
Chicago, IL 60618
(773) 278-2020