(45 ILCS 78/20)
    Sec. 20. Powers and duties of the Commission.
    (a) The duties of the Commission are to:
        (1) advocate for the funding and authorization
necessary to make passenger rail improvements a reality for the region;
        (2) identify and seek to develop ways that states can
form partnerships, including with rail industry and labor, to implement improved passenger rail in the region;
        (3) seek development of a long-term, interstate plan
for high speed rail passenger service implementation;
        (4) cooperate with other agencies, regions, and
entities to ensure that the Midwest is adequately represented and integrated into national plans for passenger rail development;
        (5) adopt bylaws governing the activities and
procedures of the Commission and addressing, among other subjects: the powers and duties of officers, the voting rights of Commission members, voting procedures, Commission business, and any other purposes necessary to fulfill the duties of the Commission;
        (6) expend such funds as required to carry out the
powers and duties of the Commission; and
        (7) report on the activities of the Commission to the
legislatures and governor of the member states on an annual basis.
    (b) In addition to its exercise of these duties, the Commission is empowered to:
        (1) provide multi-state advocacy necessary to
implement passenger rail systems or plans, as approved by the Commission;
        (2) work with local elected officials, economic
development planning organizations, and similar entities to raise the visibility of passenger rail service benefits and needs;
        (3) educate other state officials, federal agencies,
other elected officials, and the public on the advantages of passenger rail as an integral part of an intermodal transportation system in the region;
        (4) work with federal agency officials and Members of
Congress to ensure the funding and authorization necessary to develop a long-term, interstate plan for high speed rail passenger service implementation;
        (5) make recommendations to member states;
        (6) if requested by each state participating in a
particular project and under the terms of a formal agreement approved by the participating states and the Commission, implement or provide oversight for specific rail projects;
        (7) establish an office and hire staff as necessary;
        (8) contract for or provide services;
        (9) assess dues, in accordance with the terms of this
        (10) conduct research; and
        (11) establish committees.
(Source: P.A. 94-1077, eff. 6-1-07.)