— With only hours left in the 2018 regular legislative session, Illinois legislators passed a balanced budget to the Governor for the first time in years. AARP Illinois issued the following statement today applauding the Illinois General Assembly for responsibly working together in a bi-partisan collaborative manner to pass a balanced budget. “Under the Illinois Constitution, the General Assembly has one job – to pass a balanced state budget, and today they listened to those saying “Enough is Enough” and did …

— Springfield, Ill. – As key legislation to stop generic prescription-drug price-gouging appears stalled in the state Senate, pressure is growing on Senate leaders to allow a fast up-or-down vote on the bill. “Only days remain in the 2018 legislative session for Illinois Senate leaders to stop stalling the progress of this legislation,” said Bob Gallo, AARP Illinois state director.  “With national news shining a glaring light on how generic prescription-drug price-gouging is ripping off  Illinois families, local governments and state …

— Good morning. I am Ryan Gruenenfelder, Director of Advocacy & Outreach for AARP Illinois.  I want to share my own personal story as an example why this legislation is needed.  In 1977, when I was 2 years old, I was given a peanut butter cookie when it was unbeknownst to anyone I was allergic to peanuts.  I went into anaphylactic shock and became unable to breathe.  Fortunately, my caregiver was able to rush me to the hospital in Sparta, Illinois …

— Springfield, Ill. – AARP Illinois issued the following statement Wednesday calling for an up-or-down vote soon in the Illinois Senate on HB 4900, which could push Illinois to the forefront of national efforts to rein in surprise price gouging that can lead to massive increases in the cost of specific prescription drugs. “On April 19, the Illinois House of Representatives gave bipartisan approval, 65-38, to landmark legislation that would put the interests of financially stressed families ahead of pharmaceutical companies …

— AARP leaders and volunteers from Illinois and across the nation traveled to Capitol Hill to meet with members of Congress on Wednesday, April 25th urging Congressional leaders to make permanent the medical expense tax deduction threshold of 7.5 percent, maintain SNAP funding in the Farm bill, and to show their commitment to family caregiving by joining the Assisting Caregivers Today (ACT) caucus. AARP IL was there fighting for issues that matter to our members and their families. #AARP2018 AARP Chief …

— Springfield, Ill. – AARP Illinois issued the following statement Friday thanking the state House of Representatives for voting 65-38 for HB 4900, a proposal to require generic drug companies to justify drastic increases in price to the state Attorney General. “The House vote for HB 4900 is a step forward for Illinois’ older consumers, for business and for taxpayers,” said Bob Gallo, AARP’s Illinois state director. “We thank the members of the House of Representatives for their strong support for …

— By Kelly Ganski At 59, Rosanna Márquez of Chicago has the same concerns as other 50-plus voters. As the AARP Illinois president, Márquez is in a unique position to hear from older residents about issues important to them. Turns out they’re the same issues she’s passionate about: taxation of retirement income, home- and community-based services and, mainly, the Illinois fiscal crisis. “I’ve heard a lot of seniors say, ‘We’re so concerned, and we’re so frustrated, and we’re fairly scared about …

— Saturday, March 10th: AARP Illinois along with the National Women Veterans United, The United States Postal Inspection Service, and the Jesse Brown VA Medical Center honored Women’s History Month and National Consumer Protection Week by launching  Operation Protect Veterans. Operation Protect Veterans mission is help our veterans protect themselves against consumer fraud, identity theft, and other scams-whether by phone, mail, text or internet! According to an AARP Fraud Watch Network’s nationwide survey 16% of U.S. veterans have lost money to fraudsters compared …

— AARP Illinois held a press conference on proposed utilities “rider”  with its partners the Citizens Utility Board and the Illinois Public Interest Research Group standing up for Illinois consumers.   AARP commends  State Representative Will Guzzardi for his leadership in introducing legislation to protect ratepayers against skyrocketing rate. Affordable utilities are essential for our 1.7 million members in Illinois and 38 million members nationwide, but also for all older adults and working families. Utilities are crucial for our health and well-being. Older adults particularly need …

—   SPRINGFIELD– The facts are staggering. Illinois’ backlog of unpaid bills remains over $8.5 billion. Late interest payments owed exceeds $1 billion. Unfunded public pension obligations have reached $130 billion.  Illinois’ credit rating is 50th in the nation and near junk bond status. Yet, Governor Rauner’s proposed budget does not include a long term fiscal plan that would launch the journey toward making Illinois’ fiscal situation stable.  The proposed 2019 fiscal plan does not do nearly enough to protect Illinois …