Illinois General Assembly

Illinois Lawmakers Pass Bill to Move 2022 Primary Election From March to June

Senate Bill 825, which includes several election-related proposals, would shift the March 15 primary to June 28

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Illinois lawmakers on Monday passed a measure to move Illinois' primary election from March to June next year, among other election-related changes.

Senate Bill 825, which includes several election-related proposals, would shift the March 15 primary to June 28 as lawmakers await census data, delayed by the coronavirus pandemic, to redraw district maps.

The bill also includes plans to make curbside voting a permanent fixture, create polling places in certain jails and make the Nov. 8, 2022, general election a holiday, as it was in 2020.

It also "establishes new cyber security requirements for election authorities" and "requires every county to have one universal voting center for the 2022 primary and general election," according to Rep. Maurice West, a sponsor of the bill.

Both the Illinois House and Senate passed the bill on Monday, the final day of the spring legislative session. It now goes to Gov. J.B. Pritzker for approval in order to become law. Pritzker has not indicated whether he will sign or veto the measure and his office did not respond to request for comment on its passage.

With the date change for the primary election would come a host of other changes.

Under the proposal, petitions from candidates would begin on Jan. 13 and be filed with the Illinois State Board of Elections between March 7 and 14, residents would be able to seek vote-by-mail ballots beginning March 30 and no later than June 23, and in-person early voting would begin May 19 - among other changes.

The measure comes as lawmakers await the release of "block-level" population and demographic data from the 2020 Census, which is not scheduled to be released until mid-August at the earliest.

The data is usually given to states in March each year following the Census, in time for states to use it in the redistricting process. But this cycle's delay puts the data release well after the June 30 deadline for new maps that's mandated in the Illinois Constitution.

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