Bill Text: IL SB2290 | 2021-2022 | 102nd General Assembly | Enrolled


Bill Title: Reinserts the provisions of the introduced bill with changes. Allows the Illinois Innovation Voucher Program to be administered by a governmental entity with expertise in innovation, technology, economic development, research and development, and public private partnerships. Provides that the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, subject to appropriation, shall be authorized to provide to the entity administering the Program an administrative fee in an amount not to exceed 10% (rather than 15%) of the total value of vouchers estimated by the Department to be issued in each fiscal year. Makes the awarding of innovation vouchers subject to appropriation. Makes other changes. Effective immediately.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 11-0)

Status: (Enrolled) 2021-06-30 - Sent to the Governor [SB2290 Detail]

Download: Illinois-2021-SB2290-Enrolled.html



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1 AN ACT concerning State government.
2 Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
3represented in the General Assembly:
4 Section 1. Short title. This Act may be cited as the
5Illinois Broadband Adoption Fund Act.
6 Section 5. Definitions. As used in this Act:
7 "Broadband Internet" means lines or wireless channels that
8terminate at an end-user location and enable the end-user to
9receive a minimum service level of 25 megabits per second
10download speed and 3 megabits per second upload speed.
11 "Covered agencies" means those social service agencies
12receiving State or federal funds to assist persons eligible
13under the Illinois Broadband Adoption Program.
14 "Department" means the Department of Human Services.
15 "Fund" refers to the Illinois Broadband Adoption Fund.
16 "Provider" means a provider of broadband Internet in this
17State.
18 Section 10. Illinois Broadband Adoption Program. The
19Illinois Broadband Adoption Program is established for the
20purpose of expanding availability of broadband Internet
21connectivity throughout the State by:
22 (1) providing financial assistance to State residents

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1 to whom broadband Internet service is available, but who
2 may require assistance to adopt or maintain service due to
3 economic hardship;
4 (2) promoting the adoption of home broadband Internet
5 service by State residents; and
6 (3) supporting digital skills training for State
7 residents.
8 Section 15. Illinois Broadband Adoption Fund.
9 (a) The Illinois Broadband Adoption Fund is established as
10a special fund within the State treasury for the purpose of
11providing financial assistance under this Act. The Department
12shall administer the fund.
13 (b) The fund consists of:
14 (1) money received through the federal American Rescue
15 Plan and other vehicles designed to address and relieve
16 economic hardship for State households;
17 (2) money appropriated by the General Assembly;
18 (3) money transferred to the fund under the Treasurer
19 as Custodian of Funds Act; and
20 (4) donations, gifts, and money received from any
21 other source, including transfers from other funds or
22 accounts.
23 (c) The Treasurer shall invest the money in the fund not
24currently needed to meet the obligations of the fund in the
25same manner as other public funds may be invested.

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1 Section 20. Application for financial assistance.
2 (a) The Department may determine qualifications for
3broadband Internet provider participation and enter into an
4agreement with each provider under which the provider agrees
5to accept vouchers distributed by the Department under this
6Act as a form of payment for the provider's broadband Internet
7service.
8 (b) In coordination with the covered agencies, the
9Department shall send information regarding the availability
10of financial assistance under this Act to each eligible family
11or person receiving the public assistance in Section (d). The
12information must include:
13 (1) the name and contact information of each provider
14 who has entered into an agreement with the Department as
15 described in subsection (a) whose broadband Internet
16 service is available in their area; and
17 (2) instructions for applying to the Department for
18 financial assistance under this Section.
19 (c) An individual who receives information under
20subsection (b) may apply for financial assistance under this
21Section in the manner specified by the Department. Upon
22receipt of an application, the Department shall determine:
23 (1) the applicant's eligibility for financial
24 assistance;
25 (2) the amount of financial assistance for which the

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1 applicant is eligible; and
2 (3) whether the applicant is eligible for a single
3 payment or a recurring payment of financial assistance,
4 based on the Department's assessment of the applicant's
5 need.
6 (d) An applicant for financial assistance under this Act
7is automatically eligible for financial assistance under this
8Act if:
9 (1) the applicant is receiving, or the applicant's
10 household includes, an individual who is receiving
11 benefits under:
12 (A) the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families
13 (TANF) program;
14 (B) the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance
15 Program (SNAP); or
16 (C) the Medicaid program; or
17 (2) the applicant's household includes a child who is
18 eligible for free or reduced-price lunch.
19 (e) If the Department determines under subsection (c) that
20an individual is eligible for financial assistance, or that
21the individual is eligible for financial assistance under
22subsection (d), the Department may provide financial
23assistance to the individual or to the broadband Internet
24provider designated by the individual in the form of one or
25more vouchers, each in an amount of up to $50, that can be used
26by the individual to pay one or more of the following expenses:

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1 (1) fees charged by a broadband Internet provider for
2 installation, activation, equipment purchase, Wi-Fi
3 extenders, or other one-time expenses of providing
4 broadband Internet service to the individual;
5 (2) monthly subscription fees charged by a broadband
6 Internet provider for the provision of broadband Internet
7 service to the individual household, including modem,
8 router, or other service or equipment charges; and
9 (3) overdue amounts owed to provider, including
10 administrative fees and penalties.
11 A voucher or similar designation of eligibility may be
12provided by the Department in printed or electronic form.
13 (f) A provider that receives a voucher under this Section
14from an individual household who subscribes to the provider's
15broadband Internet service shall deduct the amount of the
16voucher from the amount owed by the subscriber for the
17provider's provision of broadband Internet service to the
18individual household on a monthly basis.
19 (g) If the fund does not receive an ongoing appropriation
20from the General Assembly, the Department shall provide a
2190-day notice to participating households and broadband
22Internet providers that financial support will be
23discontinued.
24 Section 100. The Department of Commerce and Economic
25Opportunity Law of the Civil Administrative Code of Illinois

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1is amended by adding Section 605-1055 as follows:
2 (20 ILCS 605/605-1055 new)
3 Sec. 605-1055. Illinois Innovation Voucher Program.
4 (a) The Department is authorized to establish the Illinois
5Innovation Voucher Program to be administered in accordance
6with this Section for the purpose of fostering research and
7development in key industry clusters leading to the creation
8of new products and services that can be marketed by Illinois
9businesses. Subject to appropriation, the Department may award
10innovation vouchers to eligible businesses to offset a portion
11of expenses incurred through a collaborative research
12engagement with an Illinois institution of higher education.
13 (b) Subject to appropriation, the Department may award
14matching funds in the form of innovation vouchers up to 75% of
15the cost of the research engagement not to exceed $75,000. A
16business may receive only one innovation voucher under this
17Section per year.
18 (c) The Department, when administering the Program under
19this Section:
20 (1) must encourage participation among small and
21 mid-sized businesses;
22 (2) must encourage participation in the Program in
23 diverse geographic and economic areas, including urban,
24 suburban, and rural areas of the State; and
25 (3) must encourage participation in the Program from

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1 businesses that operate in key industries, as defined by
2 the Department. These industries include, but are not
3 limited to, the following: (i) agribusiness and agtech;
4 (ii) energy; (iii) information technology; (iv) life
5 sciences and healthcare; (v) manufacturing; and (vi)
6 transportation and logistics.
7 (d) In order to be eligible for an innovation voucher
8under this Section, a business must satisfy all of the
9following conditions:
10 (1) the business must be an Illinois-based business.
11 For the purposes of this Section, "Illinois-based
12 business" means a business that has its principal place of
13 business in this State or that employs at least 100
14 full-time employees, as defined under Section 5-5 of the
15 Economic Development for a Growing Economy Tax Credit Act,
16 in this State;
17 (2) the business must remain in this State for the
18 duration of research engagement; and
19 (3) the partnering institution of higher education
20 must be an Illinois-based institution of higher education
21 and non-profit. For the purposes of this Section,
22 "Illinois-based institution of higher education" means an
23 institution of higher education that has its main physical
24 campus in this State.
25 (e) The Department may adopt any rules necessary to
26administer the provisions of this Section.

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1 Section 105. The State Finance Act is amended by adding
2Section 5.935 as follows:
3 (30 ILCS 105/5.935 new)
4 Sec. 5.935. The Illinois Broadband Adoption Fund.
5 Section 999. Effective date. This Act takes effect upon
6becoming law.
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