Press Releases

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


05.14.10

Durbin to Banking Associations: Your Members Deserve an Accurate Representation of My Swipe Fee Amendment

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) sent a letter to the Independent Community Bankers of America and the Credit Union National Association today, expressing disappointment with the two large banking associations and urging a change of course in their tactics and message to their membership. The letters follow the passage of an amendment Durbin proposed which would address the high interchange swipe fees and anti-competitive restrictions tha… Continue Reading


05.13.10

Durbin Statement On His Debit Card Swipe Fee Amendment

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) issued the following statement after the Senate approved his amendment to help reduce the swipe fees that small businesses pay on every credit and debit card sale by a bipartisan vote of 64-33: "Wall Street reform is really about two things: holding the big banks accountable for how they operate and empowering consumers to make good financial choices. Passage of this amendment is a win for the public on both fronts. … Continue Reading


05.12.10

Durbin Statement on his Meeting with Supreme Court Nominee Elena Kagan

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) made the following statement today after meeting with Supreme Court nominee, Solicitor General Elena Kagan: "Elena Kagan has extraordinary academic credentials, a long and impressive resume and has been a trailblazer both as the first woman Solicitor General and the first woman Dean of Harvard Law School. As Solicitor General, she is the nation's top lawyer and has argued six cases before the Supreme Cou… Continue Reading


05.12.10

Durbin Announces More than $600,000 in FEMA Grants for Illinois Fire Protection Services

[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 5 grants totaling $602,555 to fire departments and protection services 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 the… Continue Reading


05.11.10

Durbin Leads Effort to Improve School Meals

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today introduced legislation to fund a competitive program that would bring together nutritional and academic experts, members of the community and local schools to produce innovative ideas to improve food quality, student choices in food and healthy school environments. Earlier today, Durbin met with Chef Rachel Ray to discuss reauthorization of child nutrition programs and her effort to help children develo… Continue Reading


05.10.10

Durbin Statement on Nomination of Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) made the following statement regarding the nomination of Solicitor General Elena Kagan to the United States Supreme Court. "I applaud President Obama's decision to nominate Solicitor General Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court. Ms. Kagan is a remarkable lawyer who has worked in private practice, clerked for Illinois' own Judge Abner Mikva and Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, served as a Senate staff m… Continue Reading


05.07.10

Durbin: Interchange Fee Stunts Small Business Growth, Leads to Higher Prices for Consumers

[CHICAGO, IL] - Small businesses are being squeezed and consumers are paying higher prices as a result of rising interchange fees assessed by credit card companies each time a credit or debit card is used, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said today as he announced legislation he plans to offer to fix the problem. "Higher interchange fees for businesses mean higher costs for retailers and consumers," said Durbin. "Every time you make a purchase with plastic, the bank that issued … Continue Reading


05.06.10

Durbin Announces One-Year Extension for Firefighters at 183rd

[WASHINGTON, DC] - The F-16 maintenance mission and the National Guard firefighter unit at Springfield's Abraham Lincoln Capital Airport have been granted a one-year extension through September 2011, Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today. The Adjutant General of the State of Illinois, Major General William Enyart informed Durbin of the temporary extension of the 183rd Fighter Wing's F-16 maintenance mission. "I want to thank General Enyart for his… Continue Reading


05.06.10

Durbin Announces Nearly $2.9 Million in FEMA Grants for Illinois Fire and Ambulance Services

[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 17 grants totaling $2,858,359 to fire protection and ambulance services throughout Illinois for vehicle acquisition, 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,… Continue Reading


05.05.10

Durbin Asks IG to Investigate Potential Misuse of Federal Funds by Metra Director

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - After learning that the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) has increased its oversight of federal funds that have been allocated to Metra, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today called on the Department of Transportation's Inspector General, Calvin Scovel, to investigate whether any federal funds given to Metra were misused or used in any unauthorized way. Durbin's request comes just days after Metra's Board or Directors voted to hire an outside legal counsel … Continue Reading


05.05.10

Durbin Presses for Information on Compliance with Mine Safety Standards

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - As Congress weighs federal standards and enforcement of mine safety law in the wake of the recent tragedy at Upper Big Branch mine in West Virginia, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today sent a letter to Illinois Department of Natural Resources requesting data and information on how well Illinois coal companies are complying with current safety standards. "In light of the recent tragedy at Upper Big Branch mine in West Virginia resulting in the death of 29… Continue Reading


05.05.10

Durbin Leads Senators in Asking for Funding to Implement Asian Carp Plan

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today led a group of Senators in asking a Senate Committee to include $20 million to fund the United States Fish and Wildlife Service's (USFWS) Management and Control Plan for Bighead, Black, Grass, and Silver Carps in the United States in the FY11 Interior and related agencies appropriations bill. The Senators wrote: "The USFWS estimates that it would take $277 million over 20 years to implement the full plan. We are asking … Continue Reading

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