Press Releases

05.27.10

Durbin, Gregg Introduce Bill to Expand Successful Charter Schools

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Judd Gregg (R-NH) today introduced legislation that would expand the Charter School Program at the Department of Education (DOE) to make eligible the expansion and replication of successful charter school models. The bill - the All Students Achieving through Reform (All STAR) Act - also takes several steps to strengthen public charter school accountability, transparency, and governance. "We must ensure that each and every child has … Continue Reading


05.27.10

Durbin Praises Agreement to Preserve $119 Million in Highway Funding for Illinois

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) said today that he is "very pleased" that an agreement was reached between House and Senate negotiators over a proposal to revise federal highway formula funding. The original proposal would have caused 13 states and the District of Columbia to lose more than $515 million in total highway funding, including a $119-million reduction in funding for Illinois. "The compromise agreed to today is a win for all involved … Continue Reading


05.27.10

Durbin to Visa and MasterCard: Stop Threatening Small Banks

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - In a strongly worded letter to the CEOs of Visa and MasterCard, Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) told the credit card giants to stop threatening small banks with interchange fee changes and to commit not to take any steps that would purposefully disadvantage small card issuers. Visa and MasterCard began making these threats after Durbin successfully added a bipartisan amendment to the Wall Street reform bill to help reduce the interchange fees that … Continue Reading


05.27.10

Durbin: Senate Judiciary Committee Approves US Marshal Nominee in Northern District

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the Senate Judiciary Committee, of which he is a member, unanimously approved Darryl McPherson to serve as U.S. Marshal in the Northern District of Illinois. His nomination will now proceed to a vote by the full Senate. "Darryl McPherson will bring a great deal of knowledge and experience from his many years of service to the position of U.S. Marshal in the Northern District. It was an honor recommending Darryl'… Continue Reading


05.26.10

Durbin Announces Nearly $1 Million in FEMA Grants for Illinois Fire Departments

[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 8 grants totaling $992,001 to fire departments throughout Illinois for operations and safety."Our nation's firefighters are called upon day after day to protect America's citizens," Durbin said. "As these brave men and women put themselves in harm's way, we must ensure that they are equipped with the best resources pos… Continue Reading


05.26.10

Durbin Tells Governor: Fight to Retain $119 Million in Transportation Funding for Illinois Continues

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - With $119 million in federal highway funding for Illinois in jeopardy, Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today said he continues to push to curtail efforts by the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee to change federal highway funding formulas - a proposal that would be harmful to Illinois highway projects. Durbin said he is pushing for a compromise that would allow Illinois and other impacted states to keep all previously committed highway fun… Continue Reading


05.25.10

Durbin Sends Letter to Wall Street Reform Conferees on Interchange Amendment

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - In a letter to the Senate Conferees for the recently passed Wall Street reform bill, Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) pressed members to include his amendment to help reduce the interchange fees that small businesses pay on every credit and debit card sale. Durbin's bipartisan amendment, which passed the Senate by a vote of 64-33, would enable small businesses and merchants to lower their costs and provide discounts for their customers. "My ame… Continue Reading


05.25.10

Durbin, Senators Introduce Bill to Help Transit Agencies Reverse Fare Hikes and Service Cuts

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today joined Senators Chris Dodd (D-CT), Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Charles Schumer (D-NY), Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Jack Reed (D-RI), and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) in introducing a bill to authorize emergency funding for transit agencies to help reverse fare increases and service cuts. "Nearly two million daily riders and more than 15,000 employees in the Chicago area have been impacted by budg… Continue Reading


05.25.10

In Response to IG Report, Durbin, Vitter Call for Reform of Agency Responsible for Policing Puppy Mills

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - In response to a scathing report by the USDA Inspector General (IG), critical of the government's handling of puppy mill investigations, Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Senator David Vitter (R-LA) today called for immediate changes at the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service's (APHIS) and promised to work with Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on administrative and legislative reforms. "This report raises serious concerns about APHIS' … Continue Reading


05.24.10

Durbin Joins Great Lakes Task Force in Calling for Greater Authority for Army Corps to Prevent Spread of Asian Carp

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today joined twelve Senators in asking the Committee on Environment and Public Works to authorize the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to take several steps to prevent the spread of Asian Carp and other invasive species. The steps include conducting a study on how to achieve physical separation of the waterways, between the Great Lakes and Mississippi River, taking measures to prevent the movement of aquatic nuisance species, purchasing r… Continue Reading


05.21.10

Durbin: Senate Passes Reform Bill that Puts Main Street Before Wall Street

[CHICAGO, IL] - American consumers are on track to see the strongest consumer financial protections in the nation's history as a result of legislation to bring accountability to Wall Street, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said today. The Restoring American Financial Stability Act, which was approved by the Senate last night by a vote of 59-39, also includes a Durbin-authored amendment to help reduce the interchange or "swipe" fees that small businesses pay on every credit and debit card… Continue Reading


05.20.10

Durbin Statement on the Passage of Major Wall Street Reform Legislation

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement after the Senate passed the Restoring American Financial Stability Act by a vote of 59- 39. "This bill means no more taxpayer bailouts for Wall Street and no more high-flying bank schemes that can drag down our economy. It contains the strongest financial consumer protections in our nation's history and empowers consumers to make the best decisions on mortgages, student loans, and… Continue Reading


05.20.10

Durbin Announces a Nearly $100,000 FEMA Grant to the Mokena Fire Protection District

[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 a $95,000 grant to the Mokena Fire Protection District in Mokena, Illinois, for operations and safety. "Our nation's firefighters are called upon day after day to protect America's citizens," Durbin said. "As these brave men and women put themselves in harm's way, we must ensure that they are equipped with the… Continue Reading


05.20.10

Durbin Announces a More Than $360,000 FEMA Grant to the Milledgeville Fire Protection District

[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 a $360,810 grant to the Milledgeville Fire Protection District in Milledgeville, Illinois, for operations and safety. "Our nation's firefighters are called upon day after day to protect America's citizens," Durbin said. "As these brave men and women put themselves in harm's way, we must ensure that the… Continue Reading


05.20.10

Durbin Welcomes Two Chicago Area Leaders a Special Guests to the Joint Session of Congress

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today welcomed Sylvia Puente and Artemio Arreola as his guests to an address by the President of Mexico Felipe Calderon Hinojosa to a joint session of Congress. Durbin, a member of the Senate Escort Committee, will meet with his guests prior to the joint session. "At today's Joint Session of Congress, I look forward to hearing President Calderon's views on strengthening the partnership between our two nations," said Durbin. … Continue Reading


05.19.10

Durbin Commends FEMA for Decision to Offer Deeply Discounted Insurance to Metro East

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today applauded the decision by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) offering property owners in Metro East deeply discounted insurance rates for two years beginning January 1, 2011. This administrative change - implemented without legislation - allows more time for repairing the levees while ensuring that residents and businesses are financially protected in the event of a flood. "In these tough… Continue Reading


05.19.10

Durbin and VA Secretary Discuss Homelessness Among Veterans in Illinois

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met with the Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), General Eric Shinseki, to discuss how to meet the needs of the estimated 1,500 veterans that go homeless every night in Illinois. Secretary Shinseki is scheduled to testify tomorrow at a joint hearing of two Senate Appropriations Subcommittees on his plan to reduce the number of homeless veterans in the United States by half over the nex… Continue Reading


05.19.10

Durbin, Senate Leadership Demand Immediate Inspection of all Offshore Oil Rigs

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) and other Senate leaders sent a letter to President Obama today, calling for an "immediate and enhanced" inspection of all offshore drilling rigs and production platforms in the United States. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), Democratic Conference Vice Chair Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Democratic Conference Secretary Patty Murray (D-WA) and Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairman Robert Menende… Continue Reading


05.18.10

Durbin Chairs Hearing on Mexican and Colombian Drug Enforcement and US Criminal Justice Assistance

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today chaired the first ever Congressional oversight hearing on U.S. rule of law assistance to foreign drug enforcement efforts. The hearing was held before Durbin's Judiciary Subcommittee on Human Rights and the Law. The United States is working with Mexico and Colombia to develop strong and effective criminal justice systems that will allow each country to protect their citizens from human rights violatio… Continue Reading


05.16.10

Durbin: Family Caregivers of Disabled Service Members to Receive Training, Stipend

[CHICAGO, IL] -Family caregivers for veterans and service members seriously injured in the line of duty will receive training and education, a monthly stipend and counseling services as a result of legislation authored by U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and signed into law last week. The Durbin-authored provision was included in the Caregivers and Veterans Omnibus Health Services Act of 2010. "Families across America are caring each day for the 720 men and women who come home … Continue Reading

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