This guide was created by Jessica Tieman for LIS 525 -- Government Information at the University of Illinois Graduate School of Library and Information Science in Spring 2014. She graciously allowed it to be republished in the University of Illinois Library's LibGuides community so that it can be continuously updated.
The original guide is available at http://libraryschool.libguidescms.com/ILEnvironmentalLawSustainability.
Understanding the Legislative Process
Illinois law can be accessed online through the Illinois General Assembly's website at http://www.ilga.gov/.
What is the difference between a statute and a public act?
Written bills or resolutions under consideration within the legislative process by the Illinois General Assembly are referred to as Statutes. After being passed by the Illinois legislature, statutes are signed and approved as enforceable laws by the Governor of Illinois, and then become known as Public Acts. The compiled collection of all Public Acts are then arranged by functional topic, known as codification. Codified Public Acts can then officially become indexed within the Illinois Compiled Satutues (ILCS), the comprehensive framework of Illinois Law maintained by the Legislative Reference Bureau. The online ILCS database is updated on an ongoing basis and at times, may not reflect very recent changes or additions.
What is the difference between a law/statute and a regulation/rule?
Laws/statutes are written and passed by the legislature and signed by the governor. They provide the authority for regulatory agencies (e.g. Illinois EPA, the Illinois Pollution Control Board) to write regulations/rules. Regulations/rules explain the technical, operational, and legal details necessary to implement laws.
Online Illinois Legislation
Illinois Compiled Statutes Complete online, government-maintained database of Public Acts and Statutes
Bills and Resolutions Current General Assembly legislation
Lexis Academic Contains Public Acts as well as an annotated Compiled Statutes. The annotated Statutes contains notes for each section of law that provide information about the history of the statute and any courts that may have interpreted the law. Searchable database contains Public Acts and annotated Compiled Statutes with details and further information about the history and any judicial proceedings relating the implementation and interpretation of the law
Hein Online Session Laws made available from the year 1809
LoisLaw Public Acts and the Illinois Compiled Statutes
Law Library Resources
Visit UIUC's Illinois Statutory Law Libguide for details on services provided at the UIUC Law Library as well as citation references and how to find regulations by name
Other Sources for Environmental Law (some may only be accessible with subscription)
Environmental Due Diligence Guide Report A comprehensive and frequently updated information resource on state statutes particularly pertaining to legal issues, cost recovery, and liability risks
Bloombreg Environment and Safety Resource Center Searchable federal and state environmental statutes, also tracks green incentives, and analyses for strategic planning (Right-to-Know planning, etc.)
Environmental Law Review Articles, Combined Law review articles