By CARL GREEN
Harrisburg, IL – The changing of the guard in the Illinois Legislature has seen the appointment of a new state representative in southern Illinois who promises to act on behalf of working people.
A nurse practitioner, Natalie Phelps Finnie, was named to replace her cousin, Brandon Phelps, in the 118th District. Phelps resigned for health reasons after serving in the House since 2003.
Phelps Finnie was chosen by Democratic Party county chairmen in the district, which includes parts of Saline, Gallatin, Hardin, Hamilton, Johnson, Union, Jackson, Massac, Pulaski and Alexander counties.
In accepting the appointment at a Southeastern Illinois College event, Phelps Finnie said her intention is to represent the interests of working people.
“From coal miners and farmers to small business owners, laborers and teachers, the hardworking men and women of our community deserve a representative in Springfield who will continue fighting for southern Illinois,” she said. “I will fight every day to bring good jobs, health care and other vital resources to the hardworking families in southern Illinois.”
Phelps Finnie was appointed to the agriculture and conservation, government transparency, police and first responders, and veteran’ affairs committees.
She said she opposed House Bill 4117, which would ban some assault-style weapons.
IMPACT ON WORKING FAMILIES
As a nurse practitioner at Gallatin County Wellness Center, Phelps Finnie said she sees the problems children have when parents can’t make ends meet. And she has seen the impact of the opioid crisis on working families.
“While the opiate crisis continues to grow because current policies have failed to address the causes of addiction, these innocent children are the ones paying the price,” she said.
A wife and mother of three, Phelps Finnie lives with her family on a cattle ranch near Elizabethtown and sings in a gospel trio with her sisters, “The Phelps Sisters” at Star Church in Eldorado.
She is the daughter of David Phelps of Eldorado, a former Congressman and state representative and a current member of the Saline County Board. She is maintaining the current 118th District office in Harrisburg.