Press Releases


Durbin, Kirk, Delegation Call on President to Provide Federal Public Assistance for Southern and Central Illinois Counties

[WASHINGTON, DC] - 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 provide Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Public Assistance to help nine Illinois counties recover from the deadly tornadoes that struck the state on November 17, 2013. "The tornado damage from severe storms this fall in Central and Southern Illinois that I saw firsthand was some of the worst I ha… Continue Reading


Durbin to Chair Hearing on Ongoing Syrian Refugee Crisis

Washington, D.C. - Assistant Majority Leader and Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights, Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that he will hold a hearing on the ongoing Syrian refugee crisis on Tuesday, January 7, 2014. The hearing will be held at 2:30pm in room 226 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building in Washington. The hearing will focus on the plight of Syrian refugees fleeing the violent civil war in their home country. Approximate… Continue Reading


Durbin Joins Bipartisan Group of Senators in Protesting EPA's Renewable Fuel Standard Proposal

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today joined a bipartisan group of Senators in a meeting on Capitol Hill with the Administration of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Gina McCarthy, to protest the agency's recent proposal reduce the renewable volume obligations (RVOs) under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). After the meeting, Durbin made the following statement: "I was proud to join a bipartisan group of Senators today in opposing the EPA's effort to undermine … Continue Reading


Durbin Applaud CFPB'S Call for Transparency Regarding Campus Debit Card Programs

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today commended the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's (CFPB) call for financial institutions to publicly disclose agreements with colleges and universities to market financial products to students, including debit, prepaid, and other products. Durbin and U.S. Representative George Miller (D-CA), the senior Democrat on the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, have been leaders in calling attention to this issue, and submitted a … Continue Reading


Durbin and Kelly Urge Centers for Disease Control to Study Threat to Public Health Posed by Pet Coke

[CHICAGO] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Robin Kelly (D-IL-02) today sent a pair of letters in response to the potential threat posed to Southeast Chicago residents by nearby petroleum coke storage sites. Petroleum coke, a potentially harmful byproduct of petroleum refining more commonly known as pet coke, is stored in open-air sites near residential blocks in the area. Durbin visited some of those communities today. Kelly visited the communities previously. "To… Continue Reading


Durbin Introduces Legislation to Ensure All Foreign Medical Schools are Held to Same Standards

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today introduced legislation that would close a loophole that has given special treatment to a small number of medical schools in the Caribbean that, last year, took in more than $450 million in U.S. Department of Education Title IV funding. Durbin's Foreign Medical School Accountability Fairness Act would require five Caribbean medical schools - four of which are for-profit institutions - to meet the same minimum requirements that every othe… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on Senate Resolution Encouraging Peaceful Resolution of Crisis in Ukraine

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, joined U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) and others this week in introducing a Senate Resolution urging the government of Ukraine and members of the opposition to find a peaceful and democratic resolution to the country's current political crisis. "The mounting political impasse in Ukraine is deeply troubling," Durbin said. "Ukraine is an important friend and ally of the United States th… Continue Reading


Durbin: Amtrak Ridership in Illinois is on the Rise

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - As Amtrak ridership numbers continue to grow, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) met today with Amtrak Board of Directors Chairman Anthony Coscia and former Mayor of Macomb, Illinois and current member of the Amtrak Board of Directors, Thomas Carper. A photo of today's meeting is available here. "Amtrak made incredible progress under Chairman Carper's leadership, and we have already seen that trend continue with Chairman Coscia," Durbin said. "Congress must also do its part … Continue Reading


Durbin: Biofuels Critical to Achieving Energy Independence, Protecting Our Environment, and Supportin Rural Economy

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Following an oversight hearing today held by the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee to examine the Environmental Protection Agency's proposal reduce the renewable volume obligations (RVOs) under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today reiterated his commitment to working with his Congressional colleagues and Illinois' industry stakeholders to improve the proposal. The biofuels industry is a major job creator, especially in rural ar… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces More Than $3.3 Million for Illinois Health Centers to Expand Healthcare Enrollment Assistance

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced a total of $3,358,809 in funding through the Affordable Care Act to hire 132 additional healthcare workers at community health centers throughout Illinois to help individuals and families enroll into affordable health insurance plans. This funding, provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, will help these centers expand outreach and enrollment assistance efforts as more Illinoisans are able to access afforda… Continue Reading


Durbin Urges Transportation Department To Verify Safety of Enbridge Pipeline in Great Lakes

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) joined U.S. Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) and Carl Levin (D-MI) today in urging the Department of Transportation to verify the safety of an Enbridge pipeline running through Great Lakes waters. Enbridge recently increased the amount of oil the 60-year old pipeline is carrying. In a letter to the Department's Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), the Senators noted that Enbridge Energy Partners' Line 5 pipeline … Continue Reading


Durbin, Warren, Boxer, Reed Introduce Student Loan Borrower Bill of Rights

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) was joined by U.S. Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Barbara Boxer (D-CA), and Jack Reed (D-RI) today in introducing legislation to ensure struggling student loan borrowers are treated fairly and understand the full range of repayment options and resources available to them. "Student loan debt has tripled over the last decade," Durbin said. "With student loan debt far outpacing the rise in starting salaries, many borrowers find that despite … Continue Reading


IL-IA Members of Congress Urge Committee to Protect Provisions Promoting Public-Private Partnerships for Water Infrastructure

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) today joined U.S. Representatives Bill Enyart (D-IL), John Shimkus (R-IL), Mike Quigley (D-IL), Bruce Braley (D-IA) and Dave Loebsack (D-IA) today called for members of a House-Senate Conference Committee to protect provisions based on the Water Infrastructure Now Public-Private Partnership Act which would improve the nation's water infrastructure through public-private partnerships and help expedite projects - including … Continue Reading


Durbin Discusses New Law Protecting School Children with Allergies

[FAIRVIEW HEIGHTS] -Students with severe allergies will be safer at school following the enactment of legislation encouraging states across the nation to improve school access to epinephrine auto-injectors, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said today. The drug is used if students have life threatening anaphylactic reactions, which have become increasingly common. The School Access to Emergency Epinephrine Act, which Durbin introduced along with U.S. Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL), was approved by the … Continue Reading


Durbin Asks Metra to Clarify Position on New Safety System

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today called on the Metra Board of Directors to clarify their position on implementing Positive Train Control (PTC) - a communications-based system designed to prevent certain types of train accidents caused by human factors - and report back to the Illinois Congressional Delegation with recommendations. "Meeting the federal deadline of implementing PTC will be challenging. The Federal Railroad Administration has offered suggestions to Co… Continue Reading


Durbin Visits Macomb Transit Facility

[MACOMB, IL] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) visited the Macomb Transit Facility today to see firsthand how the new facility is functioning as a central hub for mass transit service in McDonough County. The facility was built from repurposed factory space with the help of a $12.8 million federal investment, including $5.6 million in earmarks secured by Durbin beginning in 2002. "The Macomb Transit Facility is an example of the value of federal investment in transportation projects," Durbi… Continue Reading


Durbin Visits Carl Sandburg Community College to Discuss Closing "Skills Gap"

[GALESBURG, IL] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) visited Carl Sandburg Community College (CSCC) today to discuss legislation he introduced to help community colleges train workers for high-needs technical jobs, many of which are currently going unfilled due to a lack of qualified employees in the workforce. Durbin toured labs and met with students in CSCC's medical imaging, electrical, and diesel programs. He also talked with representatives from the BNSF Railroad, which has partnered with CS… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on the CFPB's Announcement It Will Begin Overseeing Nonbank Student Loan Servicers

[CHICAGO] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement on today's announcement by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) that it would begin supervising nonbank student loan servicers with more than one million accounts: "Today's announcement by the CFPB ensures that millions more student loan borrowers will enjoy the strong consumer protections that come with the scrutiny of this vital agency. Large loan servicers operating outside the banking system will now… Continue Reading


Durbin Introduces Student Loan Borrower Bill of Rights

[CHICAGO] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that when the Senate reconvenes next week he and U.S. Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Barbara Boxer (D-CA) will introduce legislation to ensure struggling student loan borrowers understand the full range of repayment options and resources available to them and are treated fairly by the financial institutions servicing their loans. "Student loan debt has tripled over the last decade with more than 40 million borrowers owing abou… Continue Reading


Durbin Tours Gifford Tornado Damage

[GIFFORD, IL] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today visited Gifford to take a firsthand look at the damage from last month's tornado and get an update on the recovery efforts from IEMA. "The tornado damage that I saw firsthand here in Gifford and last month in Washington is some of the worst I have ever seen," Durbin said. "The rebuilding process will be a lengthy one, but I wanted to come to Gifford today to see that recovery in action and learn what more I can do to help. President Oba… Continue Reading

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