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The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

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Illinois sees more than 300 new laws in 2024

Minimum wage raise, firearm provisions, book ban precautions among new measures
From+right%2C+Jyla+Brown%2C+a+criminolgy+major%2C+Kaustuv+Rayamajhi%2C+a+business+analytics+and+information+systems+major%2C+Chandana+Pamba%2C+a+computer+technology+major%2C+%28left%2C%29+working+the+South+Quad+dining+rush+Monday+night.+
Sia Deykoontz
From right, Jyla Brown, a criminolgy major, Kaustuv Rayamajhi, a business analytics and information systems major, Chandana Pamba, a computer technology major, (left,) working the South Quad dining rush Monday night.

Since New Year’s Day, more than 300 laws have taken effect in Illinois. To read a list of all the laws click here. Below are some of the highlights.

 

The minimum wage was increased from $13 per hour to $14 per hour, $8.40 for tipped workers. In 2025 the minimum wage will increase again by $1 to $15. This change impacts student workers as well.

 

Workers in Illinois will start to accumulate paid time off through a new law called the Paid Leave for All Workers Act.

For every 40 hours worked, workers will earn one hour of paid leave. Workers are only able to accrue 40 total hours of paid leave, which will rollover at the end of the year. According to The Associated Press, Illinois is one of three states to approve the law, with Maine and Nevada adopting the law as well.

Workers are not required to explain the reason for their absence, according to AP.

Seasonal workers are exempt for the law, as well as federal employees or college students who work “non-full-time, temporary jobs for their university,” wrote AP.

 

The U.S. Supreme Court added bans and provisions to dozens of rifles and handguns including .50-caliber guns, attachments and rapid-firing devices, according to Spectrum News. The U.S. Supreme Court has yet to make a decision on the case of Illinois’ ban on the sale, possession or manufacture of automatic weapons.

“No rifle will be allowed to accommodate more than 10 rounds, with a 15 round limit for handguns,” Spectrum stated.

Those who purchased such guns were required to register them with Illinois State Police by Jan. 1.

 

According to illinois.gov, the Child Extended Bereavement Leave Act (CEBLA) was established to provide job-protected, unpaid leave for parents who lost their child through suicide or homicide.

Length of leave under CEBLA is determined on employer size:

  • For employers of 50-249 employees: 6 weeks
  • For employers of 250+ employees: 12 weeks
  • Employers of fewer than 50 employees are not covered.

According to Illinois Department of Labor Director Jane Flanagan, those who experience loss of a loved one, especially to the hands of violence, should be protected when they are most vulnerable.

According to Lt. Governor Juliana Stratton, “The loss of a loved one due to violence is a life-changing trauma. We have a responsibility to lead with empathy and compassion in the wake of such heartache.”

 

Illinois is the first state to penalize libraries that ban books.

Illinois public libraries that ban or restrict books will be ineligible for state funding.

According to The Associated Press, the new law was created due to the U.S. banning books about LGBTQ+ and people of color.

 

Vaping or smoking electronic cigarette’s/cigars is prohibited in public, indoor spaces in Illinois. The prohibited electronic smoking devices were added to the 2008 Smoke Free Illinois Act, which banned regular tobacco products’ indoor use, according to Spectrum. Another law connecting this matter prohibits electronic cigarettes in public places and within 15 feet of entrances.

 

Police will no longer be able to pull over motorists for having the objects hang from rearview mirrors. According to Spectrum, “The law was approved after Daunte Wright was pulled over in Minnesota in 2021 for having a dangling air freshener.”

 

Video meetings, streaming or using social media websites are prohibited while driving. There are exceptions to this law for hands-free or voice-activated device or an application requiring no more than a button to active it, Spectrum said.

 

According to AP, “Legislation approved by both houses of the General Assembly include requiring Illinois insurers to cover abortion-inducing drugs, penalizing crisis pregnancy centers if they distribute inaccurate information and requiring colleges to offer reduced-price emergency contraception on campus.”

 

License plate reading technology will not be allowed to track people traveling to Illinois for an abortion.

 

Teenagers are now able to pre-register to vote at 16 years old but must obtain a driver’s license or state identification card.

 

Businesses have the option to install restrooms that can be used by any gender at the same time. According to Spectrum, “urinals may not be included and stalls must have floor-to-ceiling, locking dividers.”

 

October will be established as Italian Heritage Month.

 

Licensed health care professionals are allowed licenses to make certain disability determinations, according to illinoissenatedemocrats.com.

 

According to axios.com, utility providers are no longer allowed to terminate service for nonpayment of bills when the temperature exceeds 90 degrees.

 

According to nbcchicago.com, “Students in grades nine-through-12 shall be educated on allergen safety, including ways of recognizing symptoms and signs of an allergic reaction, and steps to take to prevent exposure to allergens, and how to safely administer epinephrine.”

 

Cam’ron Hardy can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].

 

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About the Contributor
Cam'ron Hardy, News Editor
Cam'ron is a junior journalism major. He previously served news editor and campus editor at The News. 

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