Unlike some states, the State of Illinois does not operate the local health agencies within the state. Instead, a semi-centralized system exists with the Illinois Department of Public Health operating some programs, acting as an adviser on others, and delegating to the local health departments many of its duties.
Local health departments, like the DuPage County Health Department, are autonomous, with their own staff and own board of health. Revenue is generated from three main sources:
- Local property taxes
- Grant funding
Areas of Legislative Action
Based on the foregoing, the DuPage County Health Department establishes its policies and legislative priorities in accordance with that organization and financial structure to develop three main areas for policy development and legislative action:
- Protecting the Public Health
- Advocating for Adequate Funding
- Acting as a Health Safety Net
Protecting the Public Health
Legislative initiatives may include advocating for vaccinations and advocating against harmful legalization of substances or products, such as unpasteurized milk.
Advocating for Adequate Funding
Legislative initiatives have included ensuring that the Local Health Protection Grant remains a source of funding for programs that protect the health of DuPage residents and those individuals who work in or visit DuPage. Grant funding both at the federal and state level remain a large portion of the revenue operating the programs that the DuPage County Health Department depends on to serve the community.
Acting as a Health Safety Net
The DuPage County Health Department has advocated for the ability to enter into agreements with hospitals, other not-for-profit entities, and corporate partners to provide a health safety net for residents.
The above policies guide our decisions on advocating for or against specific legislation while providing educational materials to legislators and policymakers in order to improve the legislative process.
2020 Legislative Priorities
- Supporting laws that improve vaccination rates to eliminate diseases such as measles
- Advocating for an increase in the Local Health Protection Grant
- Supporting public health-related provisions in the rulemaking process to protect public health in the sale and manufacture of cannabis.