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Governor gets bill calling for commission to study challenges of women-owned businesses

From Illinois Business Journal news services

SPRINGFIELD — To provide a clearer view of women-owned businesses and the challenges they face in Illinois, state Sen. Linda Holmes successfully pushed legislation to create a commission aimed at studying and assisting women entrepreneurs.

Holmes, D-Aurora, is the Senate sponsor of the legislation, introduced by state Rep. Linda Chapa LaVia in the House. The Women’s Business Center of Aurora called for the proposal.

“We still conduct business in a climate where women have fewer mentors and fewer role models who share the personal experience of being a woman and a business owner,” Holmes said. “The Women’s Business Ownership Council this legislation creates will take a thorough look at the complexities surrounding this issue.”

The Women’s Business Ownership Council will be part of the Governor’s Office’s Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity. Of the nine members of the panel, at least five must be women with a controlling ownership or executive duties within a business. The group will meet quarterly, issuing reports and recommendations to improve the climate for businesswomen.

Holmes is the Senate sponsor of House Bill 642, which passed the Senate yesterday and awaits the governor’s signature to become law. The governor has had the bill since June 19.

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