Press Releases

12.16.09

Durbin's Human Rights Enforcement Act Passes House, Sent to President for Signature

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - A bill that would create a new human rights section at the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) was passed by the House of Representatives late yesterday and has been sent to the President for his signature. The bill, the Human Rights Enforcement Act, introduced by Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) was unanimously approved by the Senate last month. The legislation would combine the two offices in the Justice Department with juris… Continue Reading


12.15.09

Durbin, Quinn Praise Administration Decision to Purchase Thomson Correctional Center

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Illinois Governor Pat Quinn today praised the decision by the Obama Administration to proceed with the acquisition of a state of the art correctional facility in Thomson, Illinois. "Thomson Correctional Center - a high security prison - has been sitting empty for eight years. The Obama Administration has put forward a plan to make it the safest prison in America and we are pleased that they have made this decision… Continue Reading


12.15.09

Durbin, Illinois Delegation: Progress at Marion But Challenges Remain

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - During a meeting with members of the Illinois Congressional Delegation, the Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), General Eric Shinseki, reported that several procedures have been revised at the Marion VA Medical Center and all problems identified by the Inspector General (IG) will be corrected by the end of the year. However, Secretary Shinseki cautioned that recruitment and retention of experienced personnel at Marion remains the greatest obstacle to stabi… Continue Reading


12.14.09

Durbin Commends Decision to Invent $13 Million in Efforts to Prevent Asian Carp From Entering Great Lakes

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today commended the decision by the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Lisa Jackson, to allocate $13 million in funding through the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative to prevent Asian carp from migrating further toward the Great Lakes. The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative is a new interagency initiative led by the EPA to address the most significant challenges to the Great Lakes including invasiv… Continue Reading


12.14.09

Durbin: Congress Approves Official Naming of Lovell Federal Health Care Center

[WASHINGTON, DC] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced that his language to officially name the Federal Health Care Center in North Chicago after Captain James A. Lovell was approved by the full Congress last night. The legislation was approved as part of the FY2010 Omnibus spending bill which has been sent to the President for his signature. "This is a great honor for a true American hero," said Durbin. "The story of Apollo 13 has been told many times, as a testa… Continue Reading


12.14.09

Durbin: Congress Approves Legislation Designed to Attract Medical Professionals to Rural VA Hospitalss

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that his legislation to help the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) recruit and retain high-quality healthcare administrators and providers in rural areas was approved by Congress last night. The legislation was approved as part of the FY2010 Omnibus spending bill which has been sent to the President for his signature. "The care and well-being of our nation's veterans is of paramount importance to the … Continue Reading


12.13.09

Durbin: Congress Approves More Than $126 Million in Funding For Illinois Projects

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the final Omnibus spending bill which includes $126,432,544 in funding for several Illinois projects was approved by Congress. The bill will then go to the President for his signature. SELECTED HIGHLIGHTS: CHICAGO TRANSIT ($9,304,744): Today's legislation includes over $9.3 million in funding to advance the Circle line project in Chicago; expand capacity along the Chicago Transit Authority (CT… Continue Reading


12.12.09

Durbin Statement on US-Japan Open Skies Agreement

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today after U.S. Secretary of Transportation, Ray LaHood, announced that the United States and Japan had reached an Open-Skies aviation agreement. "The Open-Skies agreement with Japan will prove to be a huge benefit to U.S. businesses and consumers alike. Expanded air service between Chicago and Japan will give U.S. air travelers greater access to Asian markets, increase choices for co… Continue Reading


12.11.09

Durbin, Quinn Reaction to Draft White House Memo on Thomson Correctional Center

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Governor of Illinois, Pat Quinn today issued the following statement after learning of a draft internal Obama Administration memo regarding the Thomson Correctional Center. "Late this afternoon, we learned of a draft internal Obama Administration memo signaling that the Administration has narrowed its focus to the Thomson Correctional Center to serve as a federal prison. We are told that the Administration has not made its … Continue Reading


12.10.09

Durbin Announces More Than $1.3 Million in Recovery Act Funding for Energy Efficiency and Conservation in Joliet

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the Department of Energy (DOE) has allocated a $1,346,400 Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) to Joliet, $94,450 of which is already available to the city, through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to help improve energy efficiency, reduce energy use and fossil fuel emissions, and create jobs locally. "Creating jobs and securing the future of our planet are two of the a… Continue Reading


12.10.09

Durbin, Illinois Delegation to Meet with VA Secretary on Tuesday

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that members of the Illinois Congressional Delegation is scheduled to meet with the Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Eric Shinseki, on TUESDAY, DECEMBER 15 to discuss the findings of the high level Quality Management team that was sent to the VA Medical Center in Marion, Illinois last month. A recent report by the VA Office of the Inspector General (OIG) revealed that leadership at the … Continue Reading


12.10.09

Durbin Announces Over $3 Million for Flood Protection in Machesney Park

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the Village of Machesney Park will receive a $3,008,816 grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for flood protection efforts in Machesney Park. After historic flooding last year, a Presidential Disaster Declaration was issued on June 24, 2008 when many of the structures in the Rock River floodplain were damaged beyond repair. "Today's funding is welcome news for the residents an… Continue Reading


12.09.09

Durbin: Committee Recommends More Than $126 Million in Funding for Illinois Projects

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the final Omnibus Appropriations Act which includes $126,432,544 in funding for several Illinois projects was approved by a joint House and Senate Conference Committee of which Durbin is a member. The House and Senate are expected to take up and pass the legislation before the end of the year. The bill will then go to the President for his signature. SELECTED HIGHLIGHTS: CHICAGO TRANSIT ($9,30… Continue Reading


12.09.09

Durbin, Hoyer Announce Plan to Resolve Disputes with Terminated Auto Dealers

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) today announced new legislative language to address the ongoing dispute between GM, Chrysler and dealerships that were closed during the companies' restructuring. The Durbin-Hoyer language expands the binding arbitration offer GM and Chrysler presented to dealers last week by requiring the arbitrator to balance the economic interests of the terminated dealership, the company … Continue Reading


12.09.09

Durbin Statement on Springfield Rail Agreement

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today released the following statement after learning that the Illinois Department of Transportation, the City of Springfield and Sangamon County have come to an agreement on how to move forward with high speed rail in Springfield. "I commend Mayor Davlin, Chairman Van Meter and Secretary Hannig for working tirelessly over the past few months to reach today's agreement. Finding a solution was not easy, but by bringing … Continue Reading


12.09.09

Durbin, Manzullo Secure $800,000 to Help Create Jobs, Improve Higher Education in Rockford

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Don Manzullo (R-IL) and announced today they have secured $800,000 in federal funds for two important initiatives to help create jobs and improve higher education in Rockford. The funding is included in the 2010 Omnibus Appropriations bill, which the House and Senate are expected to approve in the next few weeks before sending to the President for his signature. Durbin and Manzullo each requested fu… Continue Reading


12.09.09

Durbin Announces Over $21 Million for Community Health Centers in Illinois

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that four community health centers in Illinois will receive $21,847,551 in grant funding through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The Facility Investment Program grants, allocated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), are one-time grants to help support major construction and renovation projects at 85 community health centers across the country and assist networks at the cent… Continue Reading


12.07.09

Durbin Urges Illinois Residents to Apply Now for Spring Census Taker Jobs

[WASHINGTON] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today said that the U.S. Census Bureau in Chicago is recruiting temporary, part-time census takers for the 2010 Census. As many as 1000,000 people throughout Illinois will be needed to work as census takers for the 2010 Census between January and June of next year. Durbin said these short-term jobs pay between $10 and $18 dollars an hour, allow for flexible hours, paid training and reimbursement for authorized work-related expenses, such as mile… Continue Reading


12.07.09

Durbin Announces Slazinik Retained as U.S. Marshal in Illinois' Southern District

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced that President Obama has chosen Don Slazinik to be officially retained as U.S. Marshal for the Southern District of Illinois. Because he is currently the U.S. Marshal for that district - having been nominated and confirmed in 2002 - there is no need for him to be re-nominated and re-confirmed. Based on recommendations made by a bipartisan screening committee in the state, Durbin submitted Slazinik and two other … Continue Reading


12.02.09

Durbin: Chicago Small Business Owner is Testament to the Credit Crunch We Must Solve

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today introduced Ivan Matsunaga, a small business owner from Chicago, Illinois, to the Democratic Policy Committee during a hearing to examine barriers to job creation for small businesses. "Ivan Matsunaga owns two Connie's Pizzas in Chicago that are in two of the highest areas of foot traffic in the city - Navy Pier and McCormick Place," said Durbin. "Ivan graduated from Cornell and is the former chairman of the Illin… Continue Reading

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