Senator Turner

SPRINGFIELD – To promote public involvement and embody civic pride for Illinois, a measure sponsored by State Senator Doris Turner that would create a commission to develop a new official state flag passed the Senate State Government Committee Wednesday.

“Illinois is a diverse state made up of rural, urban and suburban communities known for its agriculture, strong workforce, home of Abraham Lincoln and more,” said Turner (D-Springfield). “Our flag doesn’t show that. It’s time we have a flag that truly represents our state.”

Senate Bill 1818 would create the Illinois Flag Commission to develop new state flag designs. The commission would make recommendations to the General Assembly deciding whether the current state flag should be replaced with a redesigned state flag by Sept. 1. If they decide the flag should be replaced, the commission would report recommendations to the General Assembly by Dec. 3, 2024.

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources explains Illinois’ state flag history. There have been two official state flags – the first was adopted in 1915. The second was adopted in 1969, which did not change the original design of the flag but added “Illinois.”

In 2021, Utah passed a similar law creating the Utah State Flag Task Force which provided design toolkits to libraries, schools and other institutions. The task force received around 7,000 flag designs and over 44,000 public comments. According to Utah’s Department of Cultural and Community Engagement, students, educators, families and more were invited to participate in the process of choosing Utah’s new state flag.

“I want people from across the state to feel like they are a part of the process of designing our next official state flag,” said Turner (D-Springfield). “This measure would help cultivate a sense of engagement and pride for Illinois.”

Senate Bill 1818 passed the Senate State Government Committee with bipartisan support and heads to the full Senate for further consideration.