SPRINGFIELD – Last week, Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan called for a Committee of the Whole regarding the issue of Worker’s Compensation Reform. While the Democrats were given weeks to prepare (one of the witnesses said he knew about the hearing for 3-4 weeks), the House Republicans were given the witness list just 30 minutes before the hearing started. All witnesses and panelists were brought in by the Speaker and his team.
Despite being at an obvious disadvantage, the House Republicans arguments for reform were verified. “Not a single injured worker that was brought before the House would have seen diminished benefits under the proposed reforms. More importantly, almost everyone asked confirmed how long it takes to reach a settlement in Illinois.” said Batinick, “I’ve spoken about this ad nauseam. When their witnesses are proving my point, I feel vindicated. We need to look for best practices. One of the best ways to reform the system is to get workers healthy more quickly. It’s good for the workers and it is good for businesses.”
In addition, not a single witness denied that Illinois has some of the highest workers’ compensation rates in the country. Tomorrow, the House of Representatives will convene for a Committee of the Whole on Tort Reform. As of this release, the House Republicans have not received a witness list.