031511br0486-rThank you for visiting my website.

I am proud to serve as the State Senator from Illinois’ 47th District, representing much of western Illinois. I hope you’ll find this site a useful resource in keeping up to date with what’s happening in our district and in Springfield. Please contact any of my offices with questions or ways I can better serve you.

It is my honor to represent you in Springfield.

State Senator John Sullivan
47th Legislative District


Sullivan floor 2SPRINGFIELD—A proposal allowing Illinois veterans between the ages of 35 and 40 to apply to become firefighters was approved by the Illinois Senate on Tuesday.

State Representative Don Moffitt (R-Gilson) introduced the proposal in the House, and Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville) sponsored the legislation in the Senate.

“I was glad to see the Senate pass this bill which honors both our veterans and our aspiring firefighters,” Moffitt said. “If a person who wants to be a firefighter passes the age limit for taking the fire service exam because they are serving in our armed forces, the least we can do is give them some additional time to take the fire exam for their service to our country.”

“Our veterans will have another opportunity to serve the community if they so choose,” Moffitt said. “In addition, our fire departments will potentially benefit by being able to hire firefighters who are highly trained and have many very useful skill sets.”

“Keeping fire departments fully staffed is always an issue, especially in rural areas of the state. If someone, especially a veteran, is fit to pass the exam and serve as a firefighter, age shouldn’t be an issue,” Sullivan said.

The proposal, House Bill 3203, allows veterans who turned 35 while serving in the military and are currently under the age of 40, to take an exam for a firefighter position.

Currently, no one who is 35 or older can apply to be a firefighter unless they have previously served as one.

House Bill 3203 applies to active duty or reserve members of the military, including national guardsmen.

The plan was approved unanimously and now goes to the governor for approval.



CarperSPRINGFIELD—Local officials from across Western Illinois and the state testified about the effects on state universities and colleges of a proposed 40 percent cut to Amtrak funding during a Senate committee hearing Tuesday.

Retired Macomb Mayor and current Amtrak board member Tom Carper, Spoon River College President Curt Oldfield, Western Illinois University Admissions Director Andrew Borst and Go West Transit Director Jude Kiah testified before the Senate Higher Education Committee.

State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville) serves on the committee.

“There is a clear connection between the economies of Macomb, Quincy, Galesburg and the entire region—they are all tied together by Amtrak. We should be looking into improving passenger rail service, not scaling it back.” Sullivan said.

The 40 percent reduction would eliminate one daily trip between Quincy and Chicago, reducing service to only one train.

“In 1971 the state began contracting with the newly formed Amtrak to run passenger service between Chicago and the state universities in Central, Southern and Western Illinois. It’s ironic that almost 45 years later we’re talking about preserving passenger rail service to Illinois’ colleges and universities,” Carper said.



Hamilton HS TECHSPRINGFIELD –Students from Hamilton High School presented their work on 3-D design and animation to State lawmakers during the 2015 Capitol Tech Day on Thursday. The students demonstrated how this technology helps develop skills for college and careers.

State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville) met with the students during their exhibition.

“It’s so impressive to see what students can do when they’re given tools and the freedom to use them. I appreciate them taking their time to come to the Capitol and share their work by showing the importance of technology in education,” Sullivan said.



09AGRISPRINGFIELD – A proposal to let farmers use a recycled coal byproduct as a fertilizer was approved by the Illinois Senate on Wednesday. State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville) sponsored the legislation that allows farmers to use synthetic gypsum on their fields.

Gypsum is a naturally occurring mineral most commonly mined and used for sheetrock or gypsum board. Synthetic gypsum is chemically identical to natural gypsum and is recognized by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Environmental Protection Agency as a safe, effective fertilizer.

“This is a win-win for the environment. Allowing farmers to use synthetic gypsum for fertilizer helps cut down on erosion and conserve water. And it has the added benefit of letting us repurpose a byproduct of our coal industry,” Sullivan said.


My overriding concern is to balance safety with our Second Amendment rights. This allows people with mild disabilities like Brent to show they are qualified and competent and can safely use a firearm while hunting.” – State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville)

Sullivan floorSPRINGFIELD – Brent Nicholson is a hunter and has been his whole life. Growing up, his father took Brent and his brother hunting, Brent passed the hunter safety course as a minor and when he turned 18 he applied for and received his Firearm Owner Identification (FOID) card.

Brent carried that FOID card for 13 years until last summer, when the Quincy native received a letter from the Illinois State Police requiring him to surrender his FOID card.

Despite years of safely using a firearm while he was hunting without incident, he was forced to give up his FOID card and his right to hunt with a firearm because he has an intellectual disability. Under a 2013 law allowing concealed carry, FOID rules were updated to exclude people with intellectual and developmental disabilities from using firearms.

A proposal allowing people with mild disabilities to appeal an Illinois State Police decision revoking or denying a FOID was approved by the Senate on Thursday. State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville) sponsored the legislation.


Sullivan Manar 1MACOMB – State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville) invited Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) to a meeting with the Association of Illinois Rural and Small Schools on Thursday to discuss Senate Bill 1, legislation to reform school funding.

Specifically, Sullivan wanted members of the AIRSS to hear how Senate Bill 1, of which Manar is the sponsor, would impact smaller, rural school districts, and make suggestions based on their experience.

“Senator Sullivan understands how skyrocketing transportation costs, rural poverty and other challenges hurt schools and the students they are supposed to teach. He’s a strong advocate for downstate, rural communities and their students,” Manar said.


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Contact Info

Springfield Office:

417C State House
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-2479

Quincy Office:

926 Broadway, #6
Quincy, IL 62301
(217) 222-2295

Macomb Office:

1601 W. Jackson St., Suite 105
Macomb, IL 61455
(309) 833-5526