Press Releases


Durbin, Vitter Bill to Level Playing Field for Veteran-Owned Small Businesses Passes Committee

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Senator David Vitter (R-LA), Chairman of the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Committee, today praised the passage of the Veterans Small Business Enhancement Act through the Small Business Committee. Their bipartisan legislation - which would allow veteran-owned small businesses to participate in the General Services Administration's (GSA) surplus property program - now must be voted on by the full Senate. U.S. Representative Ta… Continue Reading


Durbin, Schakowsky Introduce Legislation to Increase Competition and Lower Costs in Medicare Part D

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - During a week that marks both the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act and the 50th anniversary of Medicare, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) are introducing legislation that would increase competition and help lower drug costs for seniors and persons with disabilities who are enrolled in the Medicare Part D prescription drug program. "For fifty years, Medicare has been not just a safety net, but a lifeli… Continue Reading


Durbin: We Must Close Loopholes Allowing Millions of Taxpayer Dollars to be Wasted at For-Profit Colleges & Unaccredited Schools

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met with Rohit Chopra, former Student Loan Ombudsman at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and current Senior Fellow at Center for American Progress (CAP), to discuss improved oversight of for-profit colleges, including efforts to close loopholes that allow the for-profit college industry and unaccredited schools to take millions in taxpayer dollars without delivering acceptable educational value. "Federal oversight agencies … Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on General McDew's Senate Confirmation

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today released the following statement congratulating General Darren McDew on his confirmation as the next commander of the U.S. Transportation Command, located at Scott Air Force Base. General Darren McDew currently heads the Air Mobility Command, also located at Scott Air Force Base. A photo of Durbin's meeting with General McDew in Washington on July 9, 2015 can be accessed here. "After many years of Air Force service - including time … Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on General Selva's Senate Confirmation

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today released the following statement congratulating General Paul Selva on his confirmation as Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. General Selva currently serves as Commander of U.S. Transportation Command at Scott Air Force Base. A photo of Durbin's meeting with General Selva in Washington on July 9, 2015 can be accessed here. "During his tenure at Scott Air Base, General Selva has distinguished himself as a strong, capable lead… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on U.S.-Turkish Agreement to Establish Safe Zone in Syria

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement after the United States and Turkey announced the outline of a plan to establish a safe zone along Syria's border with Turkey. The plan will aid efforts by the U.S. and Turkey to drive ISIS forces out of the area, and create a de facto humanitarian safe zone to protect Syrians fleeing the horrific violence of the civil war. "The brutal conflict in Syria is a humanitarian nightmare," said Durbin. "More than 200,000 S… Continue Reading


Durbin, Duckworth Announce Firefighter Grant for Addison Fire Protection District and Surrounding Communities

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Today, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth (IL-08) announced that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) awarded a $218,182 Assistance to Firefighters Grant to the Addison Fire Protection District for a driver simulator for emergency vehicles. This simulator will allow the fire Department to practice defensive driving skills without jeopardizing the public. This grant was a regional award th… Continue Reading


After Weeks of Heavy Rain, Durbin, Kirk Lead Illinois Delegation Call for Federal Relief for Illinois Farmers

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) were joined by the entire Illinois Congressional Delegation today sending a letter to President Obama asking him to issue a Secretarial Disaster Declaration from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for Illinois counties impacted by heavy rainfall, which will allow farmers in the region severely impacted by flooding to receive low interest emergency USDA loans. Today's delegation letter comes in support of Illi… Continue Reading


Durbin, Leahy, Ellison, Cicilline Introduce Bill to Enhance Protections for International Religious Freedom

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and U.S. Representatives Keith Ellison (D-MN) and David Cicilline (D-RI) today introduced legislation to enhance protections for refugees and asylum seekers fleeing religious persecution, hold accountable the perpetrators of religious freedom violations, and reauthorize and reform the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF). "Our country has a long tradition of promoting religious freedom around the g… Continue Reading


Durbin Fights for Transit Funding Increase in Senate Transportation Bill

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - During the Senate's negotiations on a long-term reauthorization of federal surface transportation programs, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) fought aggressively for robust funding for bus and rail transit program that provide services to communities across Illinois. Durbin worked to secure as much as $600 million additional spending for rail transit programs - which would benefit agencies like the Chicago Transit Authority - that were funded at a much lower level in the origi… Continue Reading


Durbin, Gutierrez Urge Cooperation to Expedite Bubbly Creek Restoration

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Luis Gutierrez (D-IL) today urged the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to work together to expedite the restoration of the South Fork of the South Branch of the Chicago River - known as "Bubbly Creek". "It's important for communities in and around Chicago that this cleanup of Bubbly Creek moves forward," said Durbin. "In order to do that, we need the Army Corps and EPA wo… Continue Reading


Durbin Hosts Illinois Members at Bipartisan Delegation Luncheon

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today hosted members of the Illinois Congressional Delegation at the fifth bipartisan Illinois Congressional Delegation Luncheon of the 114th Congress. Started by the late U.S. Senator Alan J. Dixon, the Delegation Luncheon has been held regularly in Washington, DC at no expense to the federal taxpayer for more than 25 years. Photos of today's luncheon are available here. The luncheon today was attended by eight members of the … Continue Reading


Durbin Announces $3.16 Million in Federal Funding for Illinois First-Responders

[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 awarded grants totaling $3,161,281 to communities throughout Illinois. Today's funding will support and improve the capability of each department to respond to fires and other types of emergencies. "This federal funding will ensure that when fires or other emergencies occur in our communities, our nation's firefighters a… Continue Reading


Durbin & Professor Muhammad Yunus Meet to Discuss Global Anti-Poverty Efforts

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) met today with Professor Muhammad Yunus to discuss ongoing global anti-poverty efforts. Through his Grameen Bank, Professor Yunus has pioneered the microcredit movement and helped millions of people around the world break out of poverty. In 2010, Durbin authored legislation awarding Professor Yunus the Congressional Gold Medal for his work to fight poverty and promote economic and social opportunity. The medal was formally awarded at a ceremon… Continue Reading


Durbin Supports Agreement to Prevent a Nuclear-Armed Iran

WASHINGTON-U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), the Assistant Democratic Leader, today announced his support for the Iran Nuclear Agreement recently concluded by the United States, our allies, and Iran. "We know the cost of war," said Durbin. "We know it in human lives. We know it in the casualties that return. We know it in the cost to the American people. Given a choice between the invasion of Iran or working in a diplomatic fashion toward a negotiation so that we can lessen this threat to t… Continue Reading


Durbin, Reed Welcome Additional Tools to Crack Down on Predatory Lending Practices

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Jack Reed (D-RI), applauded a new rule announced today by the Department of Defense that will close loopholes in the Military Lending Act (MLA) and better protect servicemembers from predatory lending practices. Last year, Durbin and Reed led a letter to then-U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel expressing strong support for the proposed rule to help prevent lenders from charging excessive fees and taking advantage of military families. … Continue Reading


As Recovery Efforts Continue in Quincy, Durbin Commends Community for Pulling Together

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - As recovery efforts continue in response to severe winds and rains that damaged communities in Quincy, Illinois last week, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) submitted a Statement for the Congressional Record to offer condolences to Illinois families impacted by the storms, and to commend the state and local response to the devastation. "I have represented Quincy, Illinois, and Adams County since coming to Congress in 1983 as a Member of the House of Representatives," Dur… Continue Reading


Durbin Discusses Need for Long-Term Transportation Bill with Metro East Leaders

[EAST ST. LOUIS, IL] - Without Congressional action by the end of this month, transportation funding to states and mass transit agencies will be slowed down or stopped, jeopardizing infrastructure projects and good paying jobs in Illinois and across the country, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said today at a construction site near the Stan Musial Veterans Memorial Bridge. It's been nearly two months since the Senate passed a stop-gap measure to keep the country's major transportation and infras… Continue Reading


Senators: 'Terrible Failure of our Promise to Veterans and Taxpayers' when GI Bill Benefits Wasted on Questionable Institutions

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Following yet another shocking report by Reveal from the Center for Investigative Reporting, U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Chris Murphy (D-CT), Tom Carper (D-DE), Jack Reed (D-RI) and Patty Murray (D-WA) today called on the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Robert McDonald, to investigate allegations that a number of questionable unaccredited educational institutions have received G.I. Bill benefits d… Continue Reading


For First Time, Disinfected Water Begins Flowing to Chicago River System from MWRD's Calumet Plant

U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 5 Administrator Susan Hedman and other community leaders joined the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago (MWRD) in unveiling the new disinfection facility at the Calumet Water Reclamation Plant (WRP) on Friday. The new facility is designed to improve the water entering the Chicago Area Waterways (CAWS) from the treatment facility that serves more than one million people in a 300-square-mil… Continue Reading

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