Press Releases


Durbin Commends Amtrak Decision to Commit $80 Million in Recovery Act Funding to Illinois Rail

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today commended Amtrak's decision to commit $80 million in funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to Illinois to modernize Amtrak's repair shops and improve accessibility and security at Amtrak stations and facilities in the state. Earlier today, Amtrak announced the recipients of $1.3 billion in Recovery Act funding for rail projects nationwide. The announcement also includes $90.8 million to rehabilitate … Continue Reading


Supporting the President's Budget

Delivered on the floor of the United States Senate Next week the Senate will consider the Budget Resolution for fiscal year 2010. This will be a crucial debate. For 50 hours on the Senate floor we will make fundamental decisions about the shape of our economy - and the prosperity of our county - that will guide our nation for many years to come. We need to face facts -- we have inherited the worst economic crisis in generations. Passing the economic recovery package was the firs… Continue Reading


Durbin Meets with Drug Czar Nominee Kerlikowske

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) met with Drug Czar nominee Gil Kerlikowske, today to discuss the role of the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) on the issues of Mexican drug cartels, crack-cocaine sentencing, and drug abuse prevention. In addition, Durbin expressed his hope that Kerlikowske will invigorate the agency under new leadership, implementing much-needed reforms including demand reduction, treatment, and prevention. "America's dru… Continue Reading


Durbin, Collins, Schakowsky Introduce Bill to Improve Mental Health Services on College Campuses

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today joined with Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) and Representative Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) to introduce bipartisan legislation to improve mental health services on college campuses. The Mental Health on Campus Improvement Act creates a competitive grant program that would provide funding to colleges to focus on both outreach to identify students with mental health needs and treatment of students coming to counseling centers fo… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces $38.5 Million in Recovery Act Funding for Defense Facilities in Illinois

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that Illinois Department of Defense (DoD) facilities will receive a total of $38,542,000 in funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for construction projects and repairs, quality of life improvements and energy efficiency projects. Today's funding is expected to immediately generate additional employment in communities around the defense facilities. "The Recovery Act will put people to wo… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces $78.8 Million in Recovery Act Funding for VA Facilities in Illinois

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that Department of Veterans' Affairs (VA) facilities located in Illinois will receive $78,827,369 in funding for from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The funding, allocated through the Veterans Health Administration, will be used for upgrades and repairs at six VA hospitals, construction at three VA extended care facilities and repairs and equipment purchases at seven VA cemeteries. "Building… Continue Reading


Durbin, Foster Praise $48 Million in DOE Funding for Fermilab and Argonne

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Congressman Bill Foster (D-IL) today announced that the Department of Energy (DOE)'s Office of Science has awarded a total of $48 million in funding to Fermilab and Argonne National Laboratory to protect jobs and support critical research. The funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act was part of the $1.2 billion in funding that will be announced later today for national labs. "To continue leading the … Continue Reading


Durbin Announces $1.5 Million FEMA Grant for Lake County

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that Lake County will receive $1,577,922 in funding from the Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for flood control efforts. "This funding will support important flood control efforts in Lake County," said Durbin. "This federal funding will help reduce costs to local governments for emergency rescue, infrastructure repair, debris removal and emergency shelters. Dur… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces Nearly $10 Million in Recovery Act Funding for Illinois Airports

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the Department of Transportation has awarded $9,731,580 in grants to airports in Rockford, Decatur and the Quad Cities. Today's funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act will create jobs in Illinois and strengthen the region's infrastructure to serve passengers safely and efficiently. • Greater Rockford Airport Authority: $1,052,632 in funding to expand a terminal building at the … Continue Reading


Durbin Meets with Quad City Development Group to Discuss Regional Priorities

[WASHINGTON, DC] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met with fifty-five community leaders from the Quad Cities to discuss their regional priorities as part of the Quad City Development Group (QCDG) trip to Washington. "The Quad City Development Group does a great job of coming together to promote a unified agenda for the entire region," said Durbin. "Their record with the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC), fighting for the Rock Island Arsenal was excellent. Now the… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on the Investigation of Senator Roland Burris

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) issued the following statement today after speaking with members of the Select Committee on Ethics regarding the on-going investigation of Senator Roland Burris (D-IL). Last week, Durbin also spoke with Sangamon County State's Attorney, John Schmidt, regarding his investigation of Senator Burris: "At the request of the Ethics Committee, I met with them today to assist in that panel's investigation of Senator Roland Burris." "Last week,… Continue Reading


Durbin Praises Nomination of Joe Szabo for Federal Railroad Administrator

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) praised President Obama's choice of Joseph Szabo to be the Administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), U.S. Department of Transportation. "Joe Szabo is uniquely qualified to serve as the Administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration," said Durbin. "Five generations of his family have worked on the railroad and he has worked as a yard switchman, road trainman and commuter passenger conductor. Joe has a long and distin… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces More Than $12 Million in Stimulus Funding for Chicago O'Hare Airport

[WASHINGTON, DC] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has awarded $12,294,387 in funding to the city of Chicago for O'Hare International Airport. Today's funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act will be used to rehabilitate an already existing runway at the airport in order to comply with the Federal Aviation Administration's annual runway inspections. "Rehabilitation of this runway at will put I… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces Over $3.7 Million to Provide Meals to Illinois Seniors

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that Illinois will receive $3,770,526 in funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to provide meals to thousands of low-income seniors in need. Today's funding will also assist communities and the national aging services network in restoring nutrition services that have been cut and restoring positions which may have been eliminated or reduced. The funding is distributed as follows: • … Continue Reading


Renewing American Leadership on the Global Water Crisis

Remarks by Senator Richard J. Durbin Renewing American Leadership on the Global Water Crisis To the Center for Strategic and International Studies Russell Caucus Room, United States Senate March 17, 2009 **as prepared for delivery** I want to thank John Hamre for that generous introduction, and thank my friend, Congressman Earl Blumenauer for his inspiring leadership in our efforts to bring clean water and basic sanitation to the world. Congressman Blumenauer was the Ho… Continue Reading


Durbin, Cochran, Space and Bilirakis Introduce Legislation to Expand Congenital Heart Disease Research

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today joined with Senator Thad Cochran (R-MS) and Representatives Zack Space (D-OH) and Gus Bilirakis (R-FL) to introduce bipartisan legislation that increases awareness, education and research into congenital heart disease - a rapidly growing national health problem. The Congenital Heart Futures Act aims to prevent premature death and disability and increase the quality of life for the nearly 1.8 million people in the Unit… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on New U.S.-Mexico Border Security Policy

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement in response to the Obama Administration's announcement of a new U.S.-Mexico border security policy: "I commend the Obama Administration for their comprehensive approach to tackling the problem of Mexican drug cartels. With more than 7,000 murders since January 2008, and cartels operating in some 230 American cities - including in Chicago, Joliet and East St. Louis, Illinois - Mexican… Continue Reading


Durbin: Water Crisis a "Mortal and Long-Term Threat" to Global Health, Stability

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) delivered remarks on the global water crisis today and introduced legislation to dramatically improve access to clean water and sanitation. "Access to safe drinking water is a right that everyone in the world ought to enjoy but too few are able to realize," Durbin said. "Water access is no longer simply a global health and development issue; it is a mortal and long-term threat that is increasingly becoming a national se… Continue Reading


Feingold-Reid-Durbin Bill to End Automatic Congressional Pay Raises Passes the Senate

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - A bill to discontinue the practice of automatic pay raises for Members of Congress was unanimously approved by the U.S. Senate today. The bill was written by U.S. Senator Russ Feingold (D-WI) and cosponsored by Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL). The bill would permanently end the automatic cost of living adjustment, and instead require Members of Congress to vote for or against all future salary adjustments. The Consti… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces $2 Million for Statewide Teacher Training Initiative

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, said today that the omnibus appropriations bill signed into law by President Obama this week includes at least $2 million for the Teaching with Primary Sources program in Illinois. Durbin said the $2 million will come from the Library of Congress for continuation of teacher training initiatives in Illinois. Teaching with Primary Sources is a teacher training initiative that instructs educator… Continue Reading

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