Press Releases

05.19.13

Durbin, Gutierrez Optimistic on Prospects for Comprehensive Immigration Reform Bill

[CHICAGO] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today provided an update on the Senate's negotiations over the comprehensive immigration reform bill he helped draft and said he is optimistic about the proposal's chances for passage. Durbin was a member of the bipartisan Gang of Eight that introduced the bill in April after several months of negotiations and sits on the Senate Judiciary Committee, which is currently considering the legislation. "When I return to Washington tomorrow, the Senate J… Continue Reading


05.16.13

Durbin Announces A More Than $46,000 Investment in North Park First-Responder Capabilities

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), has made a $46,125 investment in the North Park Fire Protection District in Machesney Park, Illinois for operations and safety. Today's funding will help support and improve the capability of the department to respond to fires and other types of emergencies. "Our nation's first-responders are called upon day after day to prote… Continue Reading


05.15.13

Durbin Announces Senate Approval of His Legislation to Improve Mississippi River Management and Extreme Weather Response

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that his legislation to bolster efforts to maintain commercial river traffic during droughts and floods was approved by the U.S. Senate as part of the Water Resources Development Act of 2013. Specifically, the legislation would authorize a study of the entire Mississippi River Basin, for the first time ever, in order to help better understand how the Basin functions as a system and how it can best be managed in order to mainta… Continue Reading


05.15.13

Durbin: Senate Passes WRDA Bill That Invests in Illinois Priorities and Will Make Us Better Prepared for Droughts, Floods

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today said that the Water Resources Development Act of 2013 that the U.S. Senate passed earlier today by a strong bipartisan vote of 83-14 invests in Illinois priorities and will make Illinois and the Midwest better prepared for extreme weather events like droughts and floods. "This legislation is important to the commerce that moves on the Mississippi River, the Illinois River and other Illinois waterways; to those communities and towns … Continue Reading


05.15.13

Durbin, Senators Introduce Fully Paid for Legislation to Prevent Student Loan Rate Hike

[WASHINGTON, DC] - In an effort to protect taxpayers and shield college students from a sharp increase in federal Stafford loan interest rates, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) joined U.S. Senators Jack Reed (D-RI), U.S. Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), who chairs the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and eight other Senators in introducing a fully paid for bill to ensure student loan interest rates for more than 7 million undergraduate st… Continue Reading


05.15.13

Durbin Statement on Investigation Into Possible Sexual Assaults and Misconduct at Fort Hood

[Washington, D.C.] - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Defense Subcommittee, released the following statement after the Army announced an investigation into sexual assault by a noncommissioned officer assigned to sexual assault prevention office at Fort Hood, Texas: "Reports of widespread sexual assaults in the armed services show a disgraceful culture of abuse that must be stopped. Reports of a soldier at Fort Hood, Texas, assigned to preven… Continue Reading


05.15.13

Durbin, Kirk Announce Senate Approval of Their Legislation to Promote Public-Private Partnerships to Repair Locks and Dams

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL) today announced that their bipartisan, bicameral legislation to improve the nation's water infrastructure through public-private partnerships was approved by the U.S. Senate as part of the Water Resources Development Act of 2013 (S.601). The Army Corps of Engineers estimates a $60 billion backlog of outstanding projects that will take decades to complete without outside investment. "Illinois is home to some … Continue Reading


05.14.13

Durbin Meets with Secretary of Commerce Nominee Penny Pritzker

[WASHINGTON, DC] - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) met today with President Obama's nominee for Secretary of Commerce, Penny Pritzker, to discuss her nomination and the importance of supporting U.S. businesses and job creation through this economic recovery. "Penny Pritzker is an excellent choice to head the Department of Commerce," Durbin said after meeting with her this afternoon. "She has risen to the highest ranks of corporate America, understands the challenges American bus… Continue Reading


05.10.13

Durbin Announces Illinois Control Towers Previously Slated for Closure Will Remain Open

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has confirmed to him that control towers at five Illinois airports - St. Louis Regional Airport, Central Illinois Regional Airport, Decatur Airport, Southern Illinois Airport and Waukegan Regional Airport - will remain open. The control towers were previously scheduled to close on June 15, 2013 due to the impact of mandatory spending cuts, known as sequestration. Last month, Co… Continue Reading


05.10.13

Durbin, Kirk: Disaster Declaration for Eleven Illinois Counties Will Help Severe Storm Recovery

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL) today praised the decision by President Obama to declare eleven Illinois counties - Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Fulton, Grundy, Kane, Kendall, Lake, LaSalle, McHenry and Will - federal disaster areas. The President's disaster declaration triggers the release of federal funds to help individuals and businesses recover from severe storms and flooding that began on April 18, 2013. "The severe storms in April caused … Continue Reading


05.09.13

Durbin, Kirk, Delegation Call on President to Provide Federal Relief for Flood Impacted Illinois Counties

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) were joined by the entire Illinois Congressional Delegation today in sending a letter to President Obama asking him to issue a major disaster declaration for the State of Illinois and to provide relief to the 11 Illinois counties affected by a flash and river flooding that occurred last month. A Presidential disaster declaration would allow people impacted by flooding to apply for federal loans and reimbursements to help p… Continue Reading


05.08.13

While Chairing a Hearing on the Air Force's Budget, Durbin Highlights Importance of Scott AFB

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chairman of the Senate's Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, spoke today about the critical role Scott Air Force Base has played in ongoing military actions around the globe at a hearing on the Air Force's FY2014 budget request today. "Scott Air Force Base in southern Illinois is our major air mobility hub, hosting Guard and active duty units as well as U.S. Transportation Command. Members of its Tanker Airlift Control Center have called… Continue Reading


05.08.13

Durbin and Schneider Announce a $57,000 Investment in Glencoe First-Responder Capabilities

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Brad Schneider (D-IL) announced today that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), has made a $57,000 investment in the Glencoe Department of Public Safety in Glencoe, Illinois. Today's funding will help support and improve the capability of the department to respond to fires and other types of emergencies. "Our nation's firefighters are called upon day after day… Continue Reading


05.08.13

Durbin Meets with Illinois Fire Chiefs, Announces More Than $156,000 Investment in Illinois First-Responder Capabilities

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), has awarded $156,217 in grants to fire departments and municipalities throughout Illinois. Today, Durbin also met with the Illinois Fire Chiefs Association, led by Executive Director and retired Orland Fire Protection District Fire Chief Robert Buhs, to discuss the importance of these grants, fire safety issues, and the grou… Continue Reading


05.08.13

Durbin and Kelly Announce a More Than $13,000 Investment in Kankakee First-Responder Capabilities

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Robin Kelly (D-IL) announced today that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), has made a $13,239 investment in the Kankakee Township Fire Protection District in Kankakee, Illinois for fire prevention. Today's funding will help support and improve the capability of the department to respond to fires and other types of emergencies. "Our nation's first-responders … Continue Reading


05.07.13

Durbin Meets with Champaign County Officials to Discuss Local Priorities

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met with leaders from Champaign County First who were in Washington, D.C. for their annual fly-in to discuss local economic development and transportation priorities, including job-creating high speed rail and road construction projects. A photo from today's meeting is available here. Attendees at today's meeting included: Champaign Mayor Don Gerard, Champaign County Board President Alan Kurtz, Champaign Councilman Tom Bruno, Village … Continue Reading


05.06.13

Durbin: Majority of Senate Stood Up for Main Street Businesses Today

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today celebrate the Senate's overwhelming approval of a bill he co-authored to level the playing for Main Street businesses by allowing local brick-and-mortar retailers to compete more effectively against out-of-state internet sellers. The bill must now be considered by the House of Representatives where a bipartisan group of 66 Representatives have already signed on as cosponsors of the legislation. "I am proud to have joined sixty-nine … Continue Reading


05.06.13

Durbin, Maloney Re-Introduce Family and Medical Leave Inclusion Act

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Representative Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) introduced the Family and Medical Leave Inclusion Act today, which will allow employees to take unpaid leave to care for a same-sex spouse or partner, parent-in-law, adult child, sibling, grandchild or grandparent. "Regardless of the make-up of one's family, all employees should be given the same rights to care for a sick loved one in a time of need," Durbin said. "For 20 years, … Continue Reading


05.03.13

Durbin, Kirk, Schneider Visit Great Lakes Naval Station LEARN Charter School

[NORTH CHICAGO] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today visited Great Lakes Naval Station with Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL) and U.S. Representative Brad Schneider (D-IL-10) to discuss the future of the station with Base Commander CAPT Randy Lynch and other leaders. Earlier this year Durbin was named the chairman of the Senate Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, which oversees funding for the military and intelligence community, the nation's security requirements and the daily needs of over two mil… Continue Reading


05.02.13

Durbin: Court Ruling Will Clear the Air for Amtrak and Metra Passengers at Union Station

[CHICAGO] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today applauded U.S. Federal Court Judge Harry Leinenweber's approval of a Consent Decree that requires the owner of the former main Chicago Post Office, International Property Developers (IPD), to operate all the exhaust fans "seven (7) days a week, twenty-four (24) hours a day" to provide ventilation for the tracks at Union Station in Chicago. The Consent Decree also allows regular inspections by Amtrak, which owns the station through its Chicago Un… Continue Reading

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