Legislative Advocacy

The Mission of the Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce is to foster and promote a vibrant business environment for the benefit of our members. We recognize that the legislative and regulatory actions of government at all levels – local, county, state and national – have a significant impact on the business environment in the Pekin area. Thus, one of the goals of our strategic plan is Business Advocacy – to be the voice of the Pekin business community..

Pekin Public Library to Host Candidate Forum and Discussion

Citizens of Pekin are invited to attend the mayoral and city council candidate events at the Pekin Public Library on Thursdays, March 9th and March 23rd from 6-8:00 p.m. These events are an opportunity for voters to learn more about candidates themselves and to hear discussions on relevant issues.   

The first event on Thursday, March 9th will be moderated by the League of Women’s Voters. City council candidates will speak from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. and mayoral candidates from 7:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. This is an informal opportunity for the candidates to speak on themselves. The Candidate Forum will be available to view online 

The Candidate Discussion takes place Thursday, March 23rd and will be moderated by Chris Kaergard of the Dirksen Congressional Center. As an interactional opportunity on relevant community issues, the event will feature city council candidates from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., with mayoral candidates to follow. Questions will include submissions from constituency in attendance.  

In addition, the Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce will release candidate-submitted videos of self-introduction beginning Thursday, February 23rd 

All mayoral and city council candidates have been invited to the events. Mayoral candidates include Mary J. Burress, Becky Cloyd and David B. Nutter. City Council candidates are John Abel, Joshua L. Hafliger, Rick Hilst, Karen Hohimer, Robert Jaskiewicz, Matthew Johnson, Jacob Brisbin, and Jim Mangan. 

A collective group of community-minded individuals and organizations have come together to coordinate these events. The Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce will promote the events, the Pekin Public Library will host the events, Michelle Bohm of the League of Women Voters and Tazewell County Clerk John Ackerman will assist with production, along with community members Tiffany White and Shannon Sandoval. 

Pekin Public Library

The mission of the Pekin Public Library is to serve as the community’s information center and gathering place. Pekin Public Library offers an array for low cost and free services to the community. See all services offered on their website.

League of Women's Voters

The League of Women Voters is a nonpartisan, grassroots organization working to protect and expand voting rights and ensure everyone is represented in our democracy. We empower voters and defend democracy through advocacy, education, and litigation and the local, state, and national levels.

Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce

The Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce creates opportunities for Pekin area businesses to succeed by cultivating an environment in which business, government, and community work collaboratively. Membership is open to any business or organization that supports this vision.

Dirksen Congressional Center

Chris Kaergard is communications director and associate historian at the Dirksen Congressional Center in Pekin. Before joining the Center, his 17-year career in local journalism included stints as an editorial writer, columnist and political reporter, frequently conducting candidate-endorsement interviews and moderating multiple election forums in Tazewell and Peoria counties. 

If you need information about voter registration, absentee ballots, early voting, polling locations, etc., call the Tazewell County Voter Registration department at 477-2267.

The Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce believes it is important that Chamber members exercise their right to vote.  The chamber also believes it is important that chamber members be informed voters, particularly when it comes to issues that can affect the vibrancy of the local business environment. 

The Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce has joined over fifty Chambers across the state in urging the Illinois Legislature to provide additional economic and regulatory relief for businesses. The coalition has identified a platform that would create a foundation for economic recovery. This includes ways to help diminish the financial hardships businesses face amid our labor shortage, spur economic development, and recover from the devastation impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

If enacted, the following items will help bolster a business bottom line and allow for continued growth and investment in Illinois.

  • Utilize American Rescue Plan Act funding to help replenish the unemployment trust fund alleviate the impending financial drain from the state’s businesses.
  • Provide legal protections to employers who follow the CDC established safety guidelines from claims that COVID-19 was contracted at the place of business.
  • Restructure the Minimum Wage Credit’s incremental phase-out to allow small businesses to capture the original intent of the credit.
  • Extend the EDGE credit sunset clause out for another ten years and utilize the tax credit as an incentive to attract new businesses to the state and allow for the growth and development of existing companies.

 In addition to the items above, Chambers All In for Economic Recovery calls for collaborative solutions to the state’s ongoing workforce challenges. The coalition recognizes the importance of having a ready, willing and skilled workforce for the future of our state’s economy. We call on the state to develop innovative programs, support pilot programs, invest in K-12 career awareness programming and assist in scaling successful workforce programs for other communities and industries. We urge Illinois legislators to create an environment and funding models that allow the private sector to drive the training demand for employers.

 Chambers All In for Economic Recovery will monitor legislative activities for items that specifically support economic recovery or may hinder ongoing recovery efforts. The coalition may act in such cases to bolster support or join in opposition.

Legislative Maps

After the 2010 census the legislative districts (state and federal) were re-drawn. Below, the most up-to-date state districting maps can be found. The link also containts contact information for both the Illinois House and Senate can be found.