Illinois Compiled Statutes
Information maintained by the Legislative Reference Bureau
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EXECUTIVE BRANCH20 ILCS 608/1
(20 ILCS 608/) Business Assistance and Regulatory Reform Act.
(20 ILCS 608/1)
This Act may be cited as the
Business Assistance and Regulatory Reform Act.
(Source: P.A. 88-404.)
20 ILCS 608/5
(20 ILCS 608/5)
The goal of this Act is to improve the State's business
climate by making it easier for small and mid-size businesses to deal with
State requirements for doing business. This goal will be achieved through
providing quick, accurate information on existing requirements and avoiding
(Source: P.A. 88-404.)
20 ILCS 608/10
(20 ILCS 608/10)
There is created an Office of Business
Permits and Regulatory Assistance (hereinafter referred to as "office")
within the Department of Commerce and Community Affairs (now Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity)
which shall consolidate existing programs
throughout State government, provide assistance to businesses with fewer than
employees in meeting State requirements for doing business and perform other
functions specified in this Act.
By March 1, 1994, the office shall complete and file with the Governor and the
General Assembly a plan for the implementation of this Act. Thereafter, the
office shall carry out the provisions of this Act, subject to funding
(Source: P.A. 98-463, eff. 8-16-13.)
20 ILCS 608/15
(20 ILCS 608/15)
Providing Information and Expediting Permit Reviews.
(a) The office shall provide an information system using a toll-free
business assistance number. The number shall be advertised throughout the
State. If requested, the caller will be sent a basic business kit, describing
the basic requirements and procedures for doing business in Illinois. If
requested, the caller shall be directed to one or more of the additional
services provided by the office. All persons providing advice to callers on
the office and all persons responsible for directly providing services to
persons visiting the office or one of its branches shall be persons with small
business experience in an administrative or managerial capacity.
(c) Any applicant for permits required for a business activity may confer
with the office to obtain assistance in the prompt and efficient processing and
review of applications. The office may designate an employee of the office to
act as a permit assistance manager to:
(1) facilitate contacts for the applicant with
(2) arrange conferences to clarify the requirements
(3) consider with State agencies the feasibility of
consolidating hearings and data required of the applicant;
(4) assist the applicant in resolution of outstanding
issues identified by State agencies; and
(5) coordinate federal, State and local regulatory
procedures and permit review actions to the extent possible.
(d) The office shall publish a directory of State business permits and State
programs to assist small businesses.
(e) The office shall attempt to establish
agreements with local governments to
allow the office to provide assistance to applicants for permits required by
these local governments.
State agencies shall, to the maximum extent feasible, establish procedures to
expedite applications for infrastructure projects. Applications for permits
for infrastructure projects shall be approved or disapproved within 45 days of
submission, unless law or regulations specify a different period. If the
interested agency is unable to act within that period, the agency shall provide
a written notification to the office specifying reasons for its inability to
act and the date by which approval or disapproval shall be determined. The
office may require any interested State agency to designate an employee who
will coordinate the handling of permits in that area.
(g) In addition to its responsibilities in connection with permit
assistance, the office shall provide general regulatory information by
directing businesses to appropriate officers in State agencies to supply the
(h) The office shall help businesses to locate and apply to training
programs available to train current employees in particular skills, techniques
or areas of knowledge relevant to the employees' present or anticipated job
duties. In pursuit of this objective, the office shall provide businesses with
pertinent information about training programs offered by State agencies, units
of local government, public universities and colleges, community colleges, and
school districts in Illinois.
(i) The office shall help businesses to locate and apply to State programs
offering to businesses grants, loans, loan or bond guarantees, investment
partnerships, technology or productivity consultation, or other forms of
(j) To the extent authorized by federal law, the office shall assist
businesses in ascertaining and complying with the requirements of the federal
Americans with Disabilities Act.
(k) The office shall provide confidential on-site assistance in identifying
problems and solutions in compliance with requirements of State and federal
environmental regulations. The office shall work through and contract with the Illinois Sustainable Technology
Center to provide confidential on-site
consultation audits that (i) assist regulatory compliance and (ii) identify
pollution prevention opportunities.
(k-5) Until July 1, 2012, the office shall provide confidential on-site assistance, including, but not limited to, consultation audits, to identify
problems and solutions regarding compliance with the requirements of the federal
Occupational Safety and Health Administration. On and after July 1, 2012, the Department of Labor shall provide confidential on-site assistance, including, but not limited to, consultation audits, to identify
problems and solutions regarding compliance with the requirements of the federal
Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
(l) The office shall provide information on existing loan and business
assistance programs provided by the State.
(m) Each State agency having jurisdiction to approve or deny a permit shall
have the continuing power heretofore or hereafter vested in it to make such
determinations. The provisions of this Act shall not lessen or reduce such
powers and shall modify the procedures followed in carrying out such powers
only to the extent provided in this Act.
(n) (1) Each State agency shall fully cooperate with the office in
providing information, documentation, personnel or facilities requested by the
(2) Each State agency having jurisdiction of any permit to which the
master application procedure is applicable shall designate an employee to act
as permit liaison office with the office in carrying out the provisions of this
(o) (1) The office has authority, but is not required, to keep and analyze
appropriate statistical data regarding the number of permits issued by State
agencies, the amount of time necessary for the permits to be issued, the cost
of obtaining such permits, the types of projects for which specific permits are
issued, a geographic distribution of permits, and other pertinent data the
office deems appropriate.
The office shall make such data and any analysis of the data available to
(2) The office has authority, but is not required, to conduct or cause to be
conducted a thorough review of any agency's permit requirements and the need
by the State to require such permits. The office shall draw on the review, on
its direct experience, and on its statistical analyses to prepare
recommendations regarding how to:
(i) eliminate unnecessary or antiquated permit
(ii) consolidate duplicative or overlapping permit
(iii) simplify overly complex or lengthy application
(iv) expedite time-consuming agency review and
(v) otherwise improve the permitting processes in the
The office shall submit copies of all recommendations within 5 days of
issuance to the affected agency, the Governor, the General Assembly, and the
Joint Committee on Administrative Rules.
(p) The office has authority to review State forms on its own initiative or
upon the request of another State agency to ascertain the burden, if any, of
complying with those forms. If the office determines that a form is unduly
burdensome to business, it may recommend to the agency issuing the form either
that the form be eliminated or that specific changes be made in the form.
(q) Not later than March 1 of each year, beginning March 1, 1995, the office
shall submit an annual
report of its activities during the preceding year to the Governor and General
Assembly. The report shall describe the activities of the office during the
preceding year and shall contain statistical information on the permit
assistance activities of the office.
(Source: P.A. 97-787, eff. 7-13-12; 98-346, eff. 8-14-13.)
20 ILCS 608/20
(20 ILCS 608/20)
Review of rules and regulations; reporting.
(a) As used in this Section:
"Small business" means a corporation or a concern, including its affiliates, that is independently owned and operated, not dominant in its field, and employs fewer than 50 full-time employees or has gross annual sales of less than $4,000,000. For purposes of a specific rule, an agency may define small business to include employment of 50 or more persons if it finds that such a definition is necessary to adapt the rule to the needs and problems of small businesses and organizations.
"State agencies" means all officers, boards, commissions, and agencies of the executive branch, including all officers, departments, boards, commissions, agencies, institutions, authorities, universities, and bodies politic and corporate thereof; and administrative units or corporate outgrowths of the State government which are created by or pursuant to statute, other than units of local government and their officers, school districts and boards of election commissioners; all administrative units and corporate outgrowths of the above and as may be created by executive order of the Governor.
(b) Each State agency shall scrutinize its rules, administrative regulations, and permitting processes as they pertain to small businesses in order to identify those rules, regulations, and processes that are unreasonable, unduly burdensome, duplicative, or onerous to small businesses. The goal of this review is for each State agency to:
(1) recommend changes that will lessen the reporting
and paper work requirements on small businesses while still achieving the intent of the underlying statute;
(2) eliminate unnecessary or antiquated permit
(3) consolidate duplicative or overlapping permit
(4) simplify overly complex or lengthy application
(5) expedite time-consuming agency review and
(c) Each State agency must conduct its initial review of its rules, regulations, and permitting processes under subsection (b) of this Section within one year of the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 99th General Assembly, and every 5 years thereafter. At the conclusion of each review, each State agency must issue a report containing the results from its review and any recommendations to the Office of Business Permits and Regulatory Assistance, the Governor, and the General Assembly.
(Source: P.A. 99-370, eff. 1-1-16