SPRINGFIELD – Governor George H. Ryan announced today that he is releasing $65,000 in Illinois FIRST funding for projects in Southwestern Illinois, including $60,000 to Old Ripley Township to repair and purchase parts for the road district's equipment.
Due to the degraded condition of the equipment, the district has been unable to repair roads for oiling and chipping. The repairs will include correcting mechanical problems and replacing brakes and tires. This Illinois FIRST project was initiated by State Sen. Frank C. Watson, R-Greenville.
Other Illinois FIRST grants announced by Ryan:
- $5,000 to The Nature Institute to install trail markers and interpretive signs at the Olin Nature Preserve, located in the Metro St. Louis area.
This project was initiated by State Sen. Evelyn M. Bowles, D-Edwardsville.
Illinois FIRST funds are not part of the state budget's General Revenue
Fund. Recently, lagging tax collections brought on by a slowdown in the national economy and the terrorist attacks of September 11 have forced the governor to order spending cuts in the General Revenue Fund that amount to less than 2 percent of total spending. Illinois FIRST monies are derived from separate accounts in the state budget -- the Road Fund and the Fund for Illinois Future -- as well as through the sale of state bonds.