State Sen. Martwick on Spring Session, Pandemic Response


State Sen. Robert Martwick (D-Chicago) represents the 10th District in the Illinois Senate, which includes much of Chicago’s Northwest Side. 

When legislators returned to Springfield last week after more than two months away because of the coronavirus pandemic, Martwick was not among them – at least at first. 

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Martwick originally planned to skip the session due to concerns about exposure to COVID-19; he has several preexisting conditions that could make him more susceptible to the virus. 

But at the last minute, Martwick says, he ended up driving down to Springfield on Saturday in case his vote was needed to pass a reworked tax structure for the planned Chicago casino

Interactive: More from our series, COVID-19 Across Chicago.

“Sen. Harmon told me the Chicago casino bill was at risk of failure, and he asked me if I would consider coming down to cast that one vote,“ he said.

The Senate ended passing the bill 42-14, more than enough votes to secure its approval. 

“There’s so much that rides on [the casino]. The City of Chicago is suffering massive loss of revenues. We’re in a precarious financial condition,” Martwick said. “This money would go to secure our pension systems for our first responders. And that would help the overall finances of the city, and protect our homeowners from large property tax increases.” 


Covid Across Chicago

How is the novel coronavirus impacting local businesses, residents and social service agencies across the city and region? And how are local leaders handling the crisis? We hit the streets to answer those questions and more in our ongoing reporting series, COVID-19 Across Chicago. See where we’ve been and what we’ve discovered in this overview. Listed is the official Chicago community area with the neighborhood in parenthesis where appropriate.


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