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October
2003


October 31, 2003
Governor authorizes Fiscal Year 2003 Capital Dollars
Over $21 million released in statewide capital projects
SPRINGFIELD – After reviewing the capital projects to ensure that they meet his criteria of promoting education, health, public safety or economic development, Gov. Rod Blagojevich today authorized the release of $21,403,896 from the fiscal year 2003 capital funds for more than 35 capital projects throughout Illinois.


October 30, 2003
Governor Authorizes Over $17.4 Million for 2002 Capital projects
Corrections, Human Services Targeted For Improvements Work to begin immediately
SPRINGFIELD In an ongoing effort to improve some of the state’s infrastructure, Governor Blagojevich authorized today to proceed with more than 30 projects throughout the state. The projects are funded through the Capital 2002 budget that totals $17,405,745 million. The projects will begin immediately.


October 29, 2003
Lt. Gov. Quinn highlights the importance of the Illinois Clean Water Initiative
HAVANNA, IL - Today Lieutenant Governor Pat Quinn emphasized the significance of the landmark Clean Water Initiative that will improve Illinois’ ability to clean its waterways and develop its riverbanks. Quinn also saluted the city of Havana on its innovative downtown riverfront revitalization plan.


October 29, 2003
QUINN LAUNCHES DRIVE TO SLASH PROPERTY TAXES, INCREASE SCHOOL FUNDING, JUMP-START ECONOMY
CHICAGO – The biggest permanent property tax relief plan in Illinois history coupled with a supplemental infusion of cash to Illinois’ school districts is the cornerstone of an amendment to the Illinois Constitution unveiled today by Lieutenant Governor Pat Quinn.


October 29, 2003
MAYOR MICHAEL R. BLOOMBERG JOINS ILLINOIS GOVERNOR ROD BLAGOJEVICH IN PETITIONING THE FDA TO LET STATES AND CITIES IMPORT PRESCRIPTION DRUGS FROM CANADA
Importation of Prescriptions Drugs from Canada will Save New York and New Yorkers Money on Spiraling Drug Costs
NEW YORK, NY -- Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg today joined Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich in calling on the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to permit states and cities to import prescription drugs from Canada. New York City both directly and indirectly spends billions of dollars on drugs costs each; importation will save the City up to $90 million on year on Medicaid drug costs alone. (HHC) President Dr. Benjamin Chu, Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) Commissioner Dr. Thomas Frieden and Human Resources Administration (HRA) Commissioner Verna Eggelston joined the Mayor and Governor Blagojevich at the press conference at City Hall.


October 29, 2003
Governor follows through on reforms to boards and commissions
Reduces size and appoints new membership to the state’s Labor Relations Board and the Pollution Control Board
SPRINGFIELD – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today followed through on commitments he made early in his term to reform the state’s full-time boards and commissions by reducing their sizes and by appointing qualified members who will commit to full-time to the boards’ work. The Governor’s office filed papers reconstituting the Labor Relations Board and the Illinois Pollution Control Board.


October 27, 2003
Blagojevich releases much-anticipated report on feasibility and savings of prescription drug importation
Illinois could save more than $90 million
CHICAGO – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich was joined by U.S. Rep. Rahm Emanuel (D-Chicago) today as he released the findings of a study he commissioned in mid-September on the potential cost-savings and feasibility of reimbursing state employees and retirees for prescription drugs purchased from Canada, where prices are significantly lower. Illinois’ team of pharmaceutical and regulatory experts found that – if the federal Food and Drug Administration approved – the state could set up an importation system with safety checks equal to or greater than Illinois’ current pharmaceutical system and achieve savings of up to $90.7 million.


October 24, 2003
LT. GOV PAT QUINN HONORS DAY OF DIVERSITY Quinn takes the “Pledge of Respect” and records his commitment to issues of diversity at United Nations Day celebration
CHICAGO- Lt. Governor Pat Quinn helped celebrate “United Nations Day” today by supporting their theme of building bridges of respect through understanding and by taking the “Pledge of Respect” confirming his commitment to issues of diversity.


October 24, 2003
Governor announces funding for breast and cervical cancer outreach
New program to benefit uninsured women
CHICAGO – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today announced that nearly $10 million will be targeted this fiscal year for breast and cervical cancer screenings and educational outreach throughout Illinois and he pledged next year will bring even more spending.


October 23, 2003
Governor Announces Town Meetings To Share Illinois Tollway’s Proposed 2004 Budget
Meetings Heed Reform Mandate for Transparency
DOWNERS GROVE, IL – Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today encouraged Illinois Tollway customers and all citizens in Northern Illinois to participate in regional budget meetings, scheduled for next month, to get information and share feedback on the Tollway’s tentative 2004 budget.


October 23, 2003
Illinois first state to be awarded highest rating for bioterrorism preparedness
Blagojevich says recognition underscores state’s aggressive homeland security efforts
MAYWOOD, ILL. – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today announced that Illinois is the first state to receive the highest rating from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for its preparedness to handle the rapid distribution of pharmaceutical and medical supplies in the event of a bioterrorism attack.


October 23, 2003
ENERGY TASK FORCE TO EXAMINE BLACKOUT-RELATED DISASTER PREPAREDNESS OF CHICAGO’S HIGH-RISE SKYSCRAPERS
CHICAGO—Lieutenant Governor Pat Quinn convened a special meeting of the “Special Task Force on the Condition and Future of the Illinois Energy Infrastructure” to examine disaster preparedness in the event of widespread power outages at high-rise skyscrapers, major factories and schools.


October 22, 2003
Statement from Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich on the Continuing Investigations of Last Week’s Tragic Fire in the Cook County Office Building
The Federal Bureau of Tobacco, Alcohol and Firearms, the United States Department of Labor, Cook County, the City of Chicago, and the Illinois Department of Labor are all investigating last week’s tragic fire that claimed the lives of six innocent people.


October 22, 2003
Opportunity Returns: Blagojevich Launches Second of Ten Regional Economic Development Plans for Illinois
Manufacturing is the top priority for Governor’s proactive approach to create jobs and spur growth in the Quad Cities and Northwestern Illinois
EAST MOLINE – During a speech this afternoon at a manufacturing plant in East Moline, Governor Rod R. Blagojevich announced the second of 10 new major economic initiatives to spur growth in the region and across the state. The Governor’s plan, Opportunity Returns, is the most aggressive, comprehensive approach to create jobs to date in Illinois. The plan is a product of outreach over the past several months to the region, with business leaders, labor leaders, government officials and local community activists.


October 22, 2003
Quinn debates predatory hospital billing and collection practices at Illinois Senate Health and Human Services Committee
Lieutenant Governor Pat Quinn joined today State Senator Barack Obama, chairman of the Illinois Senate’s Health and Human Services Committee, and other senators of the committee at the State Senate Hearing Room to investigate charges of predatory collection practices by hospitals across Illinois.


October 20, 2003
GOVERNOR BLAGOJEVICH LAUDS BUSINESSES AND ORGANIZATIONS FOR ACHIEVEMENTS IN POLLUTION PREVENTION
SPRINGFIELD – Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today named 22 Illinois companies and organizations winners of the Governor’s Pollution Prevention Awards for significant achievements in helping the environment and the economy.


October 20, 2003
GOVERNOR BLAGOJEVICH LAUDS BUSINESSES AND ORGANIZATIONS FOR ACHIEVEMENTS IN POLLUTION PREVENTION
SPRINGFIELD – Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today named 22 Illinois companies and organizations winners of the Governor’s Pollution Prevention Awards for significant achievements in helping the environment and the economy.


October 20, 2003
Governor Accepts Resignation of Labor Director Fenger
Chicago – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today accepted the resignation of Michael Fenger, Director of the Illinois Department of Labor. Fenger sent a letter of resignation to the Governor on Monday announcing his decision to leave his post effective immediately to accept a position as a pension fund manager at Vestor Capital Corporation in Lake Forest.


October 19, 2003
Lieutenant Governor Pat Quinn reopens 38 beds at Manteno Veterans Home
On Saturday, October 18th, Lieutenant Governor Pat Quinn was joined Illinois Department of Veteran Affairs Director Roy Dolgos and petition drive leader Kathy Miller, daughter of a World War II veteran, to celebrate the successful grassroots effort to re-open the 38-bed skilled care wing that had been closed for two years at Manteno, the closest veterans’ home to Chicago.


October 16, 2003
Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn honored Olympic hopefuls – the Torres twins of Wheeling – to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month
On Thursday, October 9, Olympic cross country hopefuls Edwardo and Jorge Torres of Wheeling joined Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month.


October 16, 2003
Blagojevich, White Resolve Budget Dispute
Compromise prevents layoffs, facility closings, and provides budgetary flexibility for Secretary of State’s office
CHICAGO—A budget agreement reached today between Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich and Secretary of State Jesse White will halt the closure of any Secretary of State Driver’s Services facilities, prevent layoffs of frontline employees who serve the public, and allow the Secretary of State to satisfy a cost of living increase for all union employees.


October 15, 2003
LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR’S AWARDS FOR EXCELLENCE HIGHLIGHT EXCEPTIONAL EFFORTS OF MAIN STREET COMMUNITIES Communities Gather at the 10th Annual Main Street State Conference
ELGIN, IL – A “Support Our Troops” rally that shipped goods overseas to American soldiers, a Shrimp Festival that brought more than 9,000 people to a riverfront community and a “Hawg Night” event that filled the streets of a town with neighbors, motorcycles and ‘50s music are just a few of the Main Street programs that Lieutenant Governor Pat Quinn commended at the Illinois Main Street State Conference.


October 15, 2003
Opportunity Returns: Blagojevich Launches First of Ten Regional Economic Development Plans for Illinois
Governor initiates historic, proactive approach to create jobs and spur growth in Rock River Valley
ROCKFORD – Governor Rod Blagojevich, surrounded by business and community leaders at a manufacturing plant in Rockford, today announced the first of 10 new major economic initiatives to spur growth in the region and across the state. The Governor’s plan, Opportunity Returns, is the most aggressive, comprehensive approach to create jobs to date in Illinois. The plan is a product of outreach over the past several months to the region, with business leaders, labor leaders, government officials and local community activists.


October 14, 2003
LT. GOV. QUINN DECLARES ADULT IMMUNIZATION AWARENESS WEEK Quinn receives flu shot with elected officials and encourages Illinoisans to get immunized
While receiving his flu shot for the upcoming flu season, Lieutenant Governor Pat Quinn joined with Chicago’s elected officials to encourage adults to get their recommended immunizations by declaring Illinois Adult Immunization Week, and commended the Chicago Department of Public Health in their campaign to educate adults about immunizations.


October 14, 2003
Blagojevich unveils on-line petition drive pressing FDA to reverse its policy on importing prescription drugs from Canada
Governor asks consumers to help put pressure on federal government to open access to lower priced medicines
CHICAGO – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today announced he is enlisting the help of American drug consumers in his effort to convince the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to change its policy prohibiting states and local governments from buying FDA-approved medications for a lower price from Canada. The Governor is asking consumers to fill-out an on-line petition in support of drug importation at www.affordabledrugs.il.gov.


October 10, 2003
Governor releases $82 million in capital projects
University Plays Important Role In State Economic Development
CHAMPAIGN – Remarking that the university environment also can serve as an economic engine, Gov. Blagojevich announced today that he will release $82 million in state capital dollars to fund a laboratory at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and another lab at the University of Illinois Chicago.


October 9, 2003
Governor announces plan to promote community service in Illinois’ education system
University Merit Scholars will be measured by service to community as well as academic accomplishments
SPRINGFIELD – During a speech this morning at the Copley First Citizen Award Breakfast, Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich announced his plans to introduce legislation that adds a community service requirement to the eligibility standards for the Illinois Merit Recognition Scholarship. In addition, the Governor said his administration will study the possibility of requiring every student in Illinois to perform community service as a condition to graduating from high school.


October 7, 2003
Governor’s Special Advocates on prescription drugs lead fact-finding mission to Canada
Delegation will investigate Canadian pharmacies’ procedures and safety
CHICAGO – A delegation made up of pharmaceutical policy, legal and regulatory experts from the Blagojevich administration will travel to Canada this week to meet with representatives from Canadian pharmacies about their consumer information and safety procedures. The group, led by the state’s two Special Advocates on prescription drugs, is gathering information for a report requested by Gov. Rod Blagojevich on the cost-savings and feasibility of reimbursing state employees and retirees for prescription drugs they purchase from Canada.


October 3, 2003
QUINN CELEBRATES HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH WITH SEVEN-TIME ALL-STAR AND BASEBALL HALL OF FAME’S MINNIE MINOSO
CHICAGO—Orestes ‘Minnie’ Minoso— seven-time All-Star White Sox legend elected to the Chicago Sports Hall of Fame and the World Baseball Hall of Fame - joined Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month 2003.


October 3, 2003
GOVERNOR, MARYVILLE ACADEMY AND DCFS ANNOUNCE NEW VISION FOR DES PLAINES
CHICAGO Governor Rod R. Blagojevich, Maryville Academy and the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) today announced a plan that will convert Maryville’s Des Plaines Campus into the state’s premiere academic enrichment center serving children in Illinois’ child welfare system.


October 2, 2003
Blagojevich asks Attorney General Madigan to investigate drug-makers’ possible plan to deny American consumers access to lower priced medications
CHICAGO – Continuing his effort to tear down barriers to affordable prescription drugs, Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today called on Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan to investigate possible anti-trust violations by major pharmaceutical companies who are fighting to keep U.S. consumers from obtaining prescription medications on the lower priced Canadian market.


October 2, 2003
Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn delivers keynote address at 2003 Great Lakes Commission Annual Meeting
CHICAGO - Today Lieutenant Governor Pat Quinn delivered the keynote address for the 2003 Annual Meeting of the Great Lakes Commission that will convene in Chicago on October 1- 3.


October 1, 2003
Governor Names World-Renowned Presidential Historian To Head State Presidential Library
Richard Norton Smith To Oversee the state's 12 million historical items, including its 47,000-piece Abraham Lincoln collection
SPRINGFIELD – Gov. Rod Blagojevich appointed today world-renowned presidential historian Richard Norton Smith, who has served as director of four presidential libraries, to head the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum being built in Springfield, Illinois.

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