Illinois CON Reform Law Enacted: Board Salaries Eliminated in Last Minute Amendatory Veto

July 1, 2009

The legislation that reforms the Illinois Certificate of Need (CON) process, Senate Bill 1905, was enacted late Tuesday, June 30, the eve before the July 1 sunset of the Illinois Health Facilities Planning Act (IHFPA). The enactment resulted after the legislature’s approval of a last-minute amendatory veto by Gov. Pat Quinn.

Early on June 30, Gov. Quinn, through an amendatory veto, made several changes to the General Assembly’s version of SB 1905. Significantly, Gov. Quinn removed the provisions that provided salaries to members of the newly named Health Care Facilities and Services Review Board. One potential motivation the General Assembly had in providing salaries to board members in their version of SB 1905 may have been the historic difficulty the state has faced to identify and appoint qualified board members. Vacancies have nearly always existed with just a five-member board. Under SB 1905 as enacted, the board will ultimately be composed of nine unsalaried members. Consequently, it is likely that the state will find it challenging to constitute a full board.

The provision that provided financial penalties if a board member missed a meeting was also removed, due to removal of board member salaries. Two additional clean-up changes were made, but other than the alterations discussed above, Gov. Quinn left the General Assembly’s version of SB 1905 intact, as discussed in the earlier McGuireWoods summary. The Illinois House and Senate approved SB 1905 with Gov. Quinn’s changes, Gov. Quinn certified the changes, and SB 1905 was enacted as Public Act 96-0031.