Legislation sponsored by a local Senator on veterans courts passed the Illinois Senate unanimously yesterday.
State Senator Sam McCann’s Senate Bill 1238 aims to give veterans more access to the extra services provided by veterans courts. Specifically, the bill changes the limit from one court per circuit to one court per county.
Currently in the state of Illinois, the Chief Justice of a judicial circuit has the discretion to allow one veterans court in that particular circuit, and there are only 24 circuits covering all 102 counties.
Under McCann’s bill, Chief Justices of the individual circuits would maintain the power to decide how many counties are allowed to participate.
McCann released a statement yesterday, saying, “These brace men and women have sacrificed so much for their country, I think it’s our duty to make sure we prove easy access to important services such as this.”
McCann also explains, “This doesn’t automatically create any new courts or programs, but it gives the chief justices another tool in their toolbox to ensure their court system is meeting the needs of all of their residents, including veterans.”
The bill now heads to the Illinois House.