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State House, Senate seats in Will County up for grabs in 2022 election

The state legislature redrew it’s own district boundaries ahead of this year’s election

In this Friday, May 30, 2014 file photo, lawmakers are seen on the House floor during session at the Illinois State Capitol in Springfield Ill. More than two-dozen legislators, about 15 percent of the General Assembly, have either resigned months into the current session or said they won't seek re-election.

Members of the Illinois General Assembly, the state’s legislative body, are up for re-election this year.

State legislators vote on laws affecting Illinois residents.

The General Assembly is made up of two chambers, the House of Representatives and the Senate. Each resident is represented by one House member and one Senate member.

Each Senate district is comprised of two House districts.

The state legislature redrew the district maps using the 2020 census data for the 2022 election.

will county election

Here’s a rundown of the races relevant to the Joliet area:

House District 37

Rep. Tim Ozinga, R-Mokena, is running for re-election to his seat representing parts of Homer Glen, Mokena and New Lenox. He was first elected in 2020.

He will face a primary challenge from August O’Neill Deuser of Mokena, a former educator. Deuser ran unsuccessfully for Congress in 2016.

No Democratic candidate filed to run.

House District 85

Rep. Dagmara “Dee” Avelar, D-Bolingbrook, is running for re-election in the 85th District, which includes parts of Bolingbrook, Lockport and Romeoville. She was first elected in 2020.

No other candidate filed to run in the district.

House District 86

Rep. Larry Walsh Jr., D-Elwood, is running for re-election in the 86th District, which includes much of Joliet and Rockdale, and parts of Shorewood, Channahon, Manhattan and Elwood. Walsh has represented the district since 2012.

Three Republicans, Scott Greene of Mahattan, James Lanham of Joliet, and Dinora Ruis of Joliet, also filed to run to challenge Walsh.

House District 97

This seat is open after Rep. Mark Batinick decided not to run for re-election.

Two candidates, Tom McCullagh of Shorewood and Michelle Smith of Plainfield will vie for the GOP nomination. Smith is the Plainfield Township clerk and McCullagh is a small business owner who’s run for state and local offices in past elections.

Plainfield Village Trustee Harry Benton was the sole Democrat to file for the race.

The district includes much of Plainfield, parts of Shorewood and Joliet’s west side.

House District 98

Rep. Natalie Manley, D-Joliet, filed to run for re-election to the seat she’s represented since 2013, which includes parts of Bolingbrook, Crest Hill, Joliet, Plainfield and Romeoville. She serves as the assistant majority leader in the House.

She’s facing a primary challenge from Barry Haywood of Joliet.

No Republican candidates filed to run in the district.

A sample ballot for the upcoming Nov. 4 election. Photographed on Thursday in Joliet.

Senate District 19

Sen. Michael Hastings, D-Frankfort, is running for re-election to the seat he first won in 2012. He’s served as the majority caucus whip since 2020.

No other Democratic candidate filed to run.

Patrick Sheehan, of Lockport, was the only Republican candidate to file to challenge Hastings. Sheehan has served as a police officer in the village of Plainfield, according to his biography.

The district includes parts of Homer Glen, Mokena, New Lenox, Frankfort and extends into southern Cook County.

Senate District 43

This seat is open after Sen. John Connor chose to run for an open circuit court seat.

Two Democrats, Eric Mattson and Rachel Ventura, will vie to replace Connor. Mattson of Joliet is a Joliet firefighter and president of the union representing the city’s firefighter supervisors. Ventura of Joliet is a Will County Board member and works for Joliet Township government.

The Republican primary also features two candidates, Diane Harris and Michelle Lee. Harris of Joliet sits on the Joliet Public Library Board and serves as the vice chair of the Joliet Township Republican Organization. Lee of Shorewood is a trustee on the Joliet Junior College Board.

The district stretches from Bolingbrook to south of Joliet.

Senate District 49

Sen. Meg Loughran Cappel, D-Shorewood, is running for re-election to the seat she first won in 2020. During her first term in office, Loughran Cappel, a former educator, has focused on several education-related issues.

Three Republicans will vie to challenge her, including Stacey Keagle of Plainfield, James Lawson of Plainfield and Felicity Joy Solomon of Shorewood.

The district includes much of Plainfield, and parts of Joliet, Crest Hill, Shorewood, Romeoville and Bolingbrook, and stretches into Kendall County.

The primary election is set for June 28.

To look up which legislative districts you live in, visit willcountyclerk.gov/redistricting.