Senator VillivalamSPRINGFIELD – To better meet the needs of Illinois’ Indian American population, legislation to create the Illinois Indian American Advisory Council, championed by State Senator Ram Villivalam, was signed into law on Friday.

“As the son of Indian immigrants, I am committed to doing all I can to make Illinois the most welcoming state,” said Villivalam (D-Chicago). “This council will uplift Indian voices and ensure all of the diverse communities that contribute to our state’s success have a seat at the table.”

House Bill 4070 creates the Illinois Indian American Advisory Council to recommend policy on issues affecting the Indian American community in our state. The advisory council will consist of 21 members with recognized experience in higher education, business, trade, law, social services, immigrant and refugee services, community development, or health care.

“In Illinois we are blessed with an active and vibrant Indian American community. I am proud to have introduced legislation to create the Indian American Advisory Council and give this community a greater voice in our government,” said State Rep. Seth Lewis (R-Bartlett), the legislation’s chief House sponsor. “This legislation provides a direct line for Indian Americans in Illinois to express their opinions on policies that directly affect their community.”

Indian Americans are the largest Asian American and Pacific Islander ethnic group in Illinois, with more than 270,000 calling our state home.

House Bill 4070 was signed by the governor on Friday and the council will deliver its reports to the General Assembly on June 30 and Dec. 31 of each year.