IAD Legislative Chair Jason Altmann takes a moment to provide an update re: SB1839 and requests your support in contacting Governor Rauner to request he sign this bill into law.

Transcript: Hello I am Jason Altmann, IAD Legislative Chair.

I would like to talk about the Senate Bill 1839 which is known as the Telecommunications Act.

The bill covers many matters relating to telecommunication and phone lines. Funding for 9-1-1 call centers are also included in the Act as well.

The Illinois Telecommunications Access Corporation which is known as ITAC. You may know some Deaf individuals who work for ITAC, they have provided numerous telecommunication devices such as TTY, alerting devices, etc. Countless Deaf, Hard of Hearing, and Deafblind individuals have benefited from the program. The program is definitely a valuable resource for us to have telecommunication access in the community.

The bill also provides some funding for the 9-1-1 Call Centers so that is another reason why this bill is important. Our safety does matter.

SB1893 did pass in the House and in the Senate, now it awaits Governor Rauner’s signature and Governor Rauner recently announced that he will not sign the bill. That means the bill is in danger of being repealed on July 1, 2017 unless the repeal date is somehow extended or there is an alternative bill to replace this bill.

Once the bill is repealed, it could affect the future of ITAC and its ability to serve Deaf and Hard of Hearing. This will be a significant loss to our community if it happens. 9-1-1 call centers throughout the state would also be affected by this as well.

IAD supports the passage of SB1839 and IAD encourages you to contact Governor Rauner by calling his office at 217-782-0244 or e-mail at gov.goca@illinois.gov When you contact the Governor’s office, make sure to let the Governor’s office know that you are part of the Deaf community and tell him that he should sign SB1839 because the bill benefits our community.

I will continue to monitor the bill and if you have any questions, you may contact me at legislative@iadeaf.org

Thank you for watching and have a great evening!

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