Press Releases


Durbin Asks for Increased Transparency in Light of Unprecedented $250,000 Fine Issued Against CN for Violations

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - After learning that the Surface Transportation Board issued an unprecedented $250,000 fine against Canadian National (CN) for violations along the recently acquired Elgin, Joliet and Eastern Railway (EJ&E), U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today asked the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) to bring more oversight and transparency to the voluntary agreements CN has with 26 of the 33 affected communities in Illinois and Northwest Indiana. Currently, neither CN nor the Surfa… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on Auction of Thomson

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement after the auction of Thomson Correctional Center concluded earlier today. "The federal Bureau of Prisons has informed me that, though they are still completing the necessary reviews of Thomson Correction Center, acquiring the facility is a top priority of the Obama Administration," said Durbin. "I am encouraged that the negotiations between the State of Illinois and that federal government are ongoing. In a… Continue Reading


Durbin: CTA to Receive $1.6 Million for Chicago Western Corridor Rapid Transit Bus Network Project

[WASHINGTON, DC] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) ) today announced that the Department of Transportation's Federal Transit Administration has awarded a $1,600,000 grant to the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) to help plan for a bus rapid transit system deployment along the CTA's Western Corridor that will enhance public transportation access and choices for roughly 250,000 residents. "Today's funding will help decrease travel times, improve reliability, and expand public… Continue Reading


Durbin, Kirk to Meet With EPA Administrator Tomorrow to Discuss Tribune Report on Chromium In Chicago Drinking Water

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Stressing the importance of Lake Michigan as a vital resource to the millions of Illinoisans who rely on it for drinking water, U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) announced that they will be meeting with Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson tomorrow to discuss their concerns over a Chicago Tribune article on high levels of Chromium-6 in Chicago area drinking water. The Tribune referenced a study by the Environmental Working Group tha… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on Four Remaining Communities in Competition for FutureGen 2.0

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today made the following statement after the FutureGen Alliance announced that four communities - Christian County, Douglas County, Fayette County and Morgan County - will advance to the next stage of the competition to host the FutureGen 2.0 carbon dioxide (CO2) storage site, visitor center, research, and training facilities. The FutureGen 2.0 project and pipeline network is expected to bring 1,000 jobs to downstate Illinois and another 1,000… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on the Repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement after the Senate voted to repeal the discriminatory policy known as "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" - the Pentagon's ban on gays and lesbians serving openly in the military: "It is always a great day in America when discrimination comes to an end. The repeal of 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' is an important step in America's march toward justice. With the leadership of President Obama and a strong bipartisan … Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on the DREAM Act

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement after the DREAM Act - a narrowly-tailored bill that would allow a select group of immigrant students with great potential to contribute more fully to America - failed to overcome a Republican filibuster this morning. "Today we had a chance to make a dream come true for tens of thousands of young people across America - a dream that they would have a chance to become part of the future of… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on Release of Proposed Interchange Rule

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today after the Federal Reserve Board released proposed rules to implement interchange fee reform. Durbin included a bipartisan amendment to the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act that directed the Fed to establish standards to ensure that debit interchange fees are "reasonable and proportional" to the real cost of processing a debit card transaction. "Today's draf… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces More Than $1.7 Million in Grants for Chicago Community Service Organizations

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that the Corporation for National & Community Service (CNCS) has awarded roughly $1,720,000 in funding to 10 Chicago nonprofit organizations working to expand economic opportunities. Grantees will use this funding to help low income families boost their earnings, reduce expenses, and make better financial decisions. CNCS is a federal agency that leads President Obama's national call to service initiatives and engages more… Continue Reading


Durbin Meets With Small Business Administrator to Discuss Illinois Exports

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - United States Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met with the Administrator of the Small Business Administration, Karen Mills, to discuss ways in which Illinois companies can grow their businesses by selling to customers abroad. Illinois exports generated approx $4.1 billion in state tax revenue in 2008 and currently support 539,300 Illinois jobs. "Since 95% of the world's consumers live outside the United States, our small businesses need to be able to export effectively… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces More Than $41,000 in FEMA Grant Funding to 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 grants totaling $41,710 to two Illinois fire protection organizations 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 resou… Continue Reading


Durbin: Vote for Tax Cut Plan is a Vote for Illinois Middle-Class Families

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Noting that millions of middle class families in Illinois will benefit from lower individual tax rates and tax credits, and that 135,000 of unemployed workers Illinois will continue to receive much needed benefits throughout the holidays, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that he will vote for final passage of the Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act (H.R. 4853) - the compromise that was agreed to by President Obama and Congr… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on the Death of Springfield Mayor Tim Davlin

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) reacted to the news that Springfield Mayor, Tim Davlin, passed away this morning and offered his sympathy to the Davlin family. "I was stunned and saddened by the news of Mayor Tim Davlin's passing. His work with my office always reflected his dedication to our hometown. My thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends at this tragic moment."… Continue Reading


Durbin: Report Shows Veterans and Servicemembers Charged Highest Tuition by For-Profit Colleges, Leading to Record Student Loan Defaults

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - After reviewing the findings of a report showing that for-profit colleges are charging the highest tuition rates to veterans and servicemembers leading to a record number of student loan defaults, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today vowed to work to increase scrutiny of for-profit colleges and universities. The report issued by the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee shows a nearly 700% growth over the last four years in the amount of Department of Vete… Continue Reading


Statement from the Majority Leader and Assistant Majority Leader on the DREAM Act

[WASHINGTON, DC] - Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today on the DREAM Act: "Yesterday the House passed a strong, bipartisan version of the DREAM Act - a narrowly-tailored bill that would allow a select group of immigrant students with great potential to contribute more fully to America. "In light of that vote, the Senate will move to the House-passed version of the bill later this month. In … Continue Reading


Durbin Announces $42.3 Million in Additional High Speed Rail Funding for Illinois

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that Illinois will receive $42.3 million in additional high speed rail funding to finance track and other improvements on the Chicago to St. Louis corridor. Earlier today the Secretary of the Department of Transportation, Ray LaHood, reprogrammed a total of $1.2 billion in funding that was rejected by the incoming governors of Ohio and Wisconsin. "Illinois will be able to use this funding to break ground on projects that we… Continue Reading


Why I'm Voting Yes

CHICAGO TRIBUNE On Friday, when President Barack Obama's National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform gathers to consider a plan to bring our national debt under control, I will be voting yes. It was not an easy decision, and I know my vote will be widely criticized, but I believe it is the right thing to do. The simple fact is this: America needs to grow our economy and reduce our $13.8 trillion debt. This plan is not perfect, and it is certainly not the plan I wou… Continue Reading


Durbin Pays Tribute to Ron Santo on Senate Floor

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today celebrated the life of Chicago Cubs legend, Ron Santo, on the floor of the U.S. Senate. "Baseball may one day see a third baseman with the playing skills of Ron Santo. But it's hard to imagine that we will ever again see a ballplayer with greater loyalty or love for a city, its team and its fans," said Durbin. Text of Durbin's remarks as prepared below: Senator Richard Durbin Statement on Passing of Ron Santo December 3, 2… Continue Reading


Durbin, Snowe Bill to Protect Women and Girls from Child Marriage Passes Senate

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - The Senate unanimously passed the International Protecting Girls by Preventing Child Marriage Act late last night, a bill to protect women and girls in developing countries from child marriages. The bill, introduced by Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Senator Olympia Snowe (R-ME), requires the U.S. government to develop an integrated, strategic approach to combating child marriage with the goal of eliminating this practice worldwide. The bill also seek… Continue Reading


Durbin Introduces Legislation to Delay Flood Map Implementation for Five Years

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) joined Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) in introducing a bill to delay the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)'s mandatory flood insurance purchase requirement for five years in communities with newly designated flood maps across the country - including Metro East, Illinois where up to 30,000 properties will be affected. "I have been working closely with members of the Senate Banking Committee including Senator Schumer to see that the … Continue Reading

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