Press Releases


Durbin and Senators Request Ban on Flavored Cigars

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Frank R. Lautenberg (D-NJ), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) in sending a letter to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) asking it to ban flavored cigars. "Cigars with candy-like flavorings such as strawberry, watermelon, vanilla and chocolate attract kids to smoking and help hook them on this addictive habit," the Senators wrote. "Congress helped protect young people from the harmful effect… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces Over $315,000 in HUD Grants to Reduce Homelessness Among Illinois Veterans

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that three Illinois communities will receive a total of $315,179 in Department of Housing and Urban Development-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) grant funding to help homeless veterans find shelter as they receive health and other services. "Last night, in Illinois alone, more than 1,000 homeless veterans were on the street," said Durbin. "This country can do better-and must do better-for t… Continue Reading


Durbin, Kirk, Senators Welcome FEMA Proposal to Move Toward a More Realistic Analysis of Flood Risk

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Mark Kirk (R-IL), Thad Cochran (R-MS), Mark Pryor (D-AR) and Roger Wicker (R-MS) today encouraged community leaders, engineers and the people in flood prone areas to assess and then comment on a new risk assessment process that will replace the original method which was criticized by the lawmakers earlier this year. They argued that the original method disregarded the existence of uncertified levees and flood control structures and unjustly… Continue Reading


Durbin Applauds Chase's Decision to Adopt Fee Disclosure Form

WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today after Chase, the nation's largest bank, announced it will voluntarily adopt a disclosure form designed to make checking account terms and fees transparent and easy for consumers to understand, as he has been urging. A copy of the form, developed by The Pew Charitable Trusts' Safe Checking in the Electronic Age Project, is attached. It outlines all the basic checking account terms and conditions - inc… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces a More Than $765,000 Investment in Illinois First-responder Capabilities

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), has made a $765,108 investment in seven fire departments and fire protection districts in Illinois. Today's funding will help support and improve the capability of each department and protection district to respond to fires and other types of emergencies. "Our nation's firefighters are called upon day after day to protect America's… Continue Reading


Senators Announce U.S. Postal Service Agreement to Delay Postal Facility Closures for Five Months

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Fifteen Senators from around the country today announced that, at their request, the U.S. Postal Service has voluntarily agreed to put in place a five-month moratorium on closing postal facilities, which would give Congress more time to enact postal reform legislation. During the moratorium, scheduled to end on May 15, 2012, the Postal Service will continue to study the impact of proposed closures on service and costs and to solicit community input. Today's announcem… Continue Reading


Durbin Announced U.S. Postal Service Agreement to Delay Illinois Postal Facility Closures for Five Months

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the U.S. Postal Service has voluntarily agreed to put in place a five-month moratorium on closing postal facilities, which would give Congress more time to enact postal reform legislation. During that period, the Postal Service will continue to study the impact of proposed closures on service and costs and to solicit community input. The moratorium is scheduled to end on May 15, 2012. "Over the last few months, I hav… Continue Reading


Durbin, Quinn, Costello, Emanuel, Hoechst Announce Illinois to Receive $44 Million Investment Through Tiger Grant Program

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), Illinois Governor Pat Quinn and U.S. Representative Jerry Costello (D-IL) joined Mayors Rahm Emanuel of Chicago and Tom Hoechst of Alton today in announcing that Illinois will receive a total of $44,288,000 in TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) grant funding for three Illinois projects in the Chicagoland area and Alton. The grants represent approximately 8 percent of total funding available through the program. … Continue Reading


Durbin Calls on Illinois-based For-profit College to Refund Tuition if Programs Lose Accreditation

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - After learning that the former CEO of Career Education Corporation (CEC) is set to receive a $5 million severance, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today called on the Illinois-based company to refund tuition to students if their program of study loses accreditation. CEC, which owns and operates Le Cordon Bleu and the International Academy of Design and Technology in Chicago, risks losing accreditation after its national accreditor discovered that the company directly violat… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on the Filibuster of Richard Cordray's Nomination to Head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today after the nomination of Richard Cordray to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau was blocked by filibuster: "Richard Cordray is competent, qualified, and an honorable public servant and his nomination to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau deserved an up-or-down vote. Unbelievably, the big banks and their backers in Congress have done all they can to hamstring this bureau and prevent… Continue Reading


Durbin, Harkin: GAO Report Rejects For-Profit College Industry's Excuse for Poor Student Success Rates

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Tom Harkin (D-IA) announced that a new Government Accountability Office (GAO) report debunks the for-profit college industry's longtime excuse for poor student success rates at their schools: that they enroll students whose socioeconomic status and other characteristics make them "high-risk." Today's GAO report, which compares student success rates at for-profit, nonprofit, and public colleges, controlled for those characteristics and f… Continue Reading


Durbin Discusses Progress at FutureGen 2.0 Site With FutureGen Alliance CEO Ken Humphreys

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today discussed the progress of FutureGen 2.0 with the CEO of the FutureGen Alliance, Ken Humphreys. Recently, the FutureGen Alliance announced it will move forward with FutureGen 2.0 by purchasing portions of the Meredosia Energy Center from Ameren Energy Resources Company with the Department of Energy - a move that, according to the FutureGen Alliance, could save several million dollars. "The FutureGen Alliance is a strong organization … Continue Reading


Durbin Applauds STB Decision to Further Investigate Canadian National in Light of Recent Train Derailment

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today applauded the Surface Transportation Board (STB) for exercising its oversight authority to determine whether Canadian National is properly maintaining and upgrading the Elgin, Joliet & Eastern (EJ&E) Railway to handle hazardous materials and prevent derailments in light of a recent train derailment in an area near Elgin, Illinois. In a letter to Canadian National, the STB explained that this is the second audit ordered of Canadi… Continue Reading


Durbin, Kirk Request Surface Transportation Board Review of Barrington EJ&E Study

[CHICAGO, IL] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) today sent a letter to members of the Surface Transportation Board regarding the Village of Barrington's petition seeking additional mitigation efforts from the Canadian National Railway Company (CN) following its acquisition of the Elgin, Joliet and Eastern Railway Company (EJ&E). In May, the Village commissioned a study regarding the impact of CN's increased use of the EJ&E line that bisects the community. The Vi… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on Hall of Famer Ron Santo

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today released the following statement after learning that Chicago Cubs legend, Ron Santo, was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame: "To all of us who continue inspired by his work on and off the field, Ron Santo has always been a Hall of Famer. Today, it is official. "There is little doubt that Ron Santo was the best third baseman in Cubs history and one of the best to ever play the game. But what made him legendary was his loyalty… Continue Reading


Durbin Calls for Extension and Expansion of Middle Class Payroll Tax Cut Before End of Year

[CHICAGO, IL] - Millions of families across America will see their taxes increase by more than $1,000 next year if Congress fails to pass an extension and expansion of President Obama's middle-class payroll tax credit, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said today. Failing to pass the payroll tax cut would also result in the loss of hundreds of thousands of jobs, and a potential 1 percent drop in GDP. On Thursday evening, Republicans in the Senate blocked an effort to pass the Middle Class Tax Cut … Continue Reading


Durbin: Provision to Give National Guard Full Membership on the Joint Chiefs of Staff Approved by Senate

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the National Defense Authorization Act approved late tonight by the U.S. Senate included a provision that gives the Chief of the National Guard full voting membership on the Joint Chiefs of Staff - the biggest change since the Marine Corps was given full membership in 1979. This bipartisan measure was strongly support by the Adjutant General of the Illinois National Guard Major General William L. Enyart. "This bill en… Continue Reading


Durbin, Lautenberg applaud DOJ Appeal of Ruling That Blocks New Tobacco Warning Labels

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Frank R. Lautenberg (D-NJ) today applauded the Obama Administration for its decision to appeal a court ruling that blocks the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) from requiring new graphic warning labels on cigarette packages and advertisements. "We applaud the Justice Department for appealing this ruling and fighting for public health, especially the health of our children." the Senators said. "The FDA's new labels provide a warning about the r… Continue Reading


Durbin, Kirk to American Airlines: Keep Illinois Routes and Projects a Priority

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - In a letter to the Chairman and CEO of AMR Corporation, the parent company of American Airlines, U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) today urged the airline to make Illinois routes and projects - such as the O'Hare Modernization Program (OMP) and downstate air service - a priority as it moves forward with bankruptcy proceedings. "American Airlines has a long history in Illinois: American began air service in Illinois in 1926, when Charles Lindbergh carr… Continue Reading


Durbin Launches Interactive County-by-County Map of Savings Illinois Families Can Expect from Payroll Tax Cut Extension

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) launched an interactive map on his website today that enables Illinois families to find out how much the Middle Class Tax Cut Act of 2011 will save them in taxes next year. The legislation will extend President Obama's middle class tax cut-preventing a tax increase on millions of hardworking Illinoisans-and expand the cut in 2012 to put more money back in the pockets of American families. The Senate plans to vote on the measure later this week… Continue Reading

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