Press Releases

01.15.14

Durbin: The Surgeon General's First Report on Smoking Was a Turning Point, But We Still Have a Long Way to Go

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - To commemorate the 50th Anniversary of Surgeon General's Report on Smoking and Tobacco Use, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin spoke on the United States Senate Floor today to recognize the landmark report and the progress that has been made since it first sparked a public debate on the public health impact of smoking half a century ago. Today, Durbin also called for a renewed commitment to halting the still ongoing and deadly epidemic of tobacco, particularly among young people. … Continue Reading


01.14.14

Durbin, Kirk Ask FEMA to Fix Funding Formulas That Hurt Downstate Illinois Communities

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) today called on the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to fix the funding formulas that are unfairly putting downstate Illinois communities at a disadvantage following a disaster. Durbin and Kirk note that while FEMA is currently reviewing its disaster assistance process - required by law in the Sandy Recovery Improvement Act of 2013 - the agency should consider the legislation the Senators introduced following t… Continue Reading


01.14.14

Durbin: Omnibus Appropriations Bill Funds Innovation & Research at Argonne National Lab & Fermilab

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced the Omnibus Appropriations bill for Fiscal Year 2014, which was filed in the House and Senate yesterday, preserves essential federal funding for scientific research and development programs that support work at both Argonne National Laboratory and Fermilab. Together, Argonne and Fermilab employ roughly 4,725 Illinoisans. The bill, which reflects a budget agreement between the House and Senate, must now be voted on by both chamb… Continue Reading


01.14.14

Senators: Golden Globes Should Celebrate Achievements in Film and Television, Not Smoking and E-Cigarettes

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Following a primetime broadcast of the Golden Globes that featured prominent images of celebrities smoking e-cigarettes, U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), and Edward J. Markey (D-MA) today asked NBC Universal and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association to take action to ensure that future broadcasts avoid the glamorization of smoking and protect the health of young fans. Electronic cigarettes - or "e-cigs" - have more than … Continue Reading


01.14.14

Omnibus Appropriations Bill Makes Funding Available for CTA Under Core Capacity Program

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the Omnibus Appropriations bill for Fiscal Year 2014 honors the $120 million included in the President's Budget to fund a competitive grant program he created as part of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21) which was signed into law in 2012. The Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) became the first transit system accepted into the Federal Transit Administration (FTA)'s "Core Capacity" Program in No… Continue Reading


01.14.14

Durbin: Congress Agrees to Fund Great Lakes Restoration Initiative at $300 Million

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced the inclusion of $300 million in funding for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) in the Omnibus Appropriations bill for Fiscal Year 2014 will support ongoing efforts to protect the Great Lakes including: combating invasive species, particularly Asian Carp; reducing and removing pollution, waste run-off and toxic chemicals; and restoring wetlands and other lakefront assets. The bill, which was filed in the House earli… Continue Reading


01.13.14

Durbin & Blumenthal Optimistic FDA's New Online Reporting System Will Better Detect Unsafe Dietary Supplements

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) today expressed optimism that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)'s new online adverse event reporting system will improve submission of reports from dietary supplement consumers and members of the industry and help FDA better detect dietary supplements that pose health risks. Previously, only voluntary reports could be submitted online while mandatory adverse event reports associated with dietary… Continue Reading


01.13.14

Durbin, Bustos: Robust Funding for Prison Activation in Omnibus Appropriations Bill Is Good News for Thomson

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Cheri Bustos (IL-17) today announced that the Omnibus Appropriations bill for Fiscal Year 2014, which was filed in the House and Senate earlier today, includes funding for the activation of the Thomson correctional facility in Thomson, Illinois. The bill, which reflects a budget agreement between the House and Senate must now be voted on in both chambers and signed into law by President Obama. Though today's bill … Continue Reading


01.13.14

Durbin Commends State Action on Pet Coke

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today welcomed new rules announced by Illinois Governor Pat Quinn today that would require total enclosure of petroleum coke piles and other protections associated with the potentially harmful byproduct of petroleum refining, also known as pet coke. "Driving by the pet coke piles in Chicago, I understand why the families living nearby are concerned. Exposing them and their children to dangerous air pollution containing heavy metals and ca… Continue Reading


01.13.14

Durbin, Bustos: Omnibus Appropriations Bill Improves Rock Island Arsenal Competativeness, Ensures Steady Workload in Future

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Cheri Bustos (D-IL) today announced that the Omnibus Appropriations bill for Fiscal Year 2014, which was filed in the House and Senate earlier today includes two provisions that will help solidify the future of Rock Island Arsenal. The bill, which reflects a budget agreement between the House and Senate, must now be voted on by both chambers of Congress and signed into law by President Obama. "As a result of the p… Continue Reading


01.10.14

Durbin Announces More Than $2.9 Million for Illinois Housing Development and Self-Sufficiency Programs

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that communities across Illinois will receive a total of $2,953,707 in grant funding through two programs administered by the Department of Housing and Urban Development. The Resident Opportunities and Self Sufficiency (ROSS) Public Housing Family Self-Sufficiency (PH-FSS) Program and the Housing Choice Voucher Family Self-Sufficiency Program develop strategies which help families learn skills, gain experience, and obtain employment… Continue Reading


01.10.14

Durbin, Brown, and Kirk Introduce Bipartisan Resolution to Honor Famed Prohibition Agent Eliot Ness

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, U.S. Sens. Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Mark Kirk (R-IL) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) introduced a bipartisan resolution to honor Ohio resident and Illinois native Eliot Ness, the legendary law enforcement agent who fought to bring Chicago mob boss Al Capone to justice. The senators' resolution would name the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (BATFE) headquarters in Washington D.C., the Eliot Ness ATF Building. "Chicago gangster Al Capone believed th… Continue Reading


01.09.14

Durbin, Kirk React to Denial of Federal Public Assistance for Southern and Central Illinois Counties

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) today expressed disappointment after receiving word that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has denied the State of Illinois' request for Public Assistance to help nine Illinois counties recover from the deadly tornadoes that struck the state on November 17, 2013. The State of Illinois plans to appeal the decision. "This was some of the worst storm damage I have ever seen," said Durbin. "While the Individual… Continue Reading


01.08.14

Durbin Introduces Southern District Judicial Nominee at Senate Committee Hearing

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today introduced Nancy Rosenstengel at a hearing of the Senate Judiciary Committee, of which he is a member, to consider her nomination to fill a vacancy on the U.S. District Court in the Southern District of Illinois. Her nomination is expected to receive a vote in the committee within the next few weeks. If approved, her nomination will receive a vote by the full Senate. Durbin also met with Ms. Rosentengal following today's confirmation hea… Continue Reading


01.08.14

Durbin, Quinn, Branstad Discuss Illinois Impact of EPA Renewable Fuel Standard Proposal

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Following individual phone conversations today with Illinois Governor Pat Quinn and Iowa Governor Terry Branstad regarding the importance of the biofuels and ethanol industry to Illinois jobs and the economy, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today reiterated his strong opposition to the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) current proposal reduce the renewable volume obligations (RVOs) under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Quinn recently took over chairmanship of the Na… Continue Reading


01.08.14

On Fiftieth Anniversary of the War on Poverty, Durbin Calls for a Renewed Commitment to Creating Opportunity for All Americans

[WASHINGTON, DC] - Fifty years after President Lyndon Johnson declared a "War on Poverty," U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) spoke on the Senate Floor today to call for a renewed commitment to the government social safety net programs that have helped lift millions of Americans out of poverty. Today, Durbin asked his Senate colleagues from both sides of the aisle to consider legislative efforts to expand opportunity for all Americans, including increasing the minimum wage and extending emergency u… Continue Reading


01.07.14

Durbin Holds Hearing on Syrian Refugee Crisis

Washington, D.C. - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights, held a hearing today on the ongoing Syrian refugee crisis. "The ongoing civil war in Syria has created the world's worst humanitarian and refugee crisis since the Rwandan genocide and perhaps since World War II," Durbin said. "Of the nearly 2.3 million Syrian refugees that have fled the bloody civil war, nearly half are children. W… Continue Reading


01.06.14

Durbin Statement on Asian Carp Management Study

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today released the following statement after reviewing an Army Corps of Engineers report examining several options for containing invasive species, including Asian Carp, in the Great Lakes. Durbin joined U.S. Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Carl Levin (D-MI) and other Great Lakes Senators in requesting and authorizing the report entitled the Great Lakes & Mississippi River Interbasin Study. "This study tells us that while we have bee… Continue Reading


12.20.13

Senators Urge Swift Review of FDA Rule to Regulare the Manufacturing, Sale, and Marketing of E-Cigarettes

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - As tobacco products like electronic cigarettes and flavored cigars continue to grow in popularity and increase nicotine addiction and tobacco use among young people, U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Barbara Boxer (D-CA), and Ed Markey (D-MA) today called on the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to promptly complete its review of a proposed rule from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which would expand the FDA's regulatory authority over … Continue Reading


12.20.13

Durbin Asks IRS to Issue Rule Limiting What Hospitals Can Charge Poor, Uninsured for Care

Washington, D.C. - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) wrote to the Acting IRS Commissioner, Daniel Werfel, today asking him to complete the rulemaking process that would restrict what hospitals can charge for services to people without health care coverage and would prohibit hospitals from aggressive pursuit of medical debts from people who do not have the financial wherewithal to pay them. The rule was required as one of the consumer protection provisions found in the Affordable Care… Continue Reading

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