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July 31, 2003
Governor signs legislation to strengthen identity theft protections
Law becomes effectively immediately
SPRINGFIELD – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today enhanced law enforcement’s ability to protect consumers from identity theft by signing into law legislation that expands the scope of personally identifying information that is protected and the list of prohibited activities used to obtain another’s personal information.

July 29, 2003
Blagojevich supports legislation to reform state’s death penalty system; Issues an amendatory veto to change one provision
Governor says that moratorium will remain in force while reforms are implemented
CHICAGO – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today announced his support for legislation to enact over a dozen major reforms of the state’s death penalty system, issuing just one amendatory veto to remove a provision in the bill in order to protect due process rights for police officers accused of perjury and to prevent criminal convictions for murder, robbery, rape and other felonies from being overturned as a result of determination found under a lower standard of proof.

July 24, 2003
Blagojevich revisits Chicago childcare center to fulfill promise to enhance early childhood development
Creates Early Learning Council, expands access to childcare assistance
CHICAGO – Nearly nine months after he visited the Carole Robertson Center for Learning on Chicago’s near west side and promised to bolster the state’s commitment to early childhood development programs if he was elected, Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich returned Wednesday to sign two pieces of legislation that fulfill his promise.

July 23, 2003
Governor signs bill package to step up fight against elder abuse
EFFINHGAM, ILL. – During a stop at the Effingham Senior Center, Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today signed three bills that toughen existing state laws to protect the elderly from abuse, neglect and financial exploitation.

July 23, 2003
Blagojevich signs four bills designed to aid Illinois fire departments
NEWTON, ILL. – During his bus tour of the state where he met with residents at the Wade Community Firehouse, Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today signed four bills that will make life a little easier for the fire service in Illinois.

July 23, 2003
Governor signs bill expanding high speed internet access to rural communities
Signs new law in Robinson on last day of 3-day bus tour
Robinson, ILL. – On the last day of a three-day bus tour through eastern Illinois, Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich stopped at Lincoln Trail Community College in Robinson today to sign legislation that improves the state’s efforts to eliminate the “digital divide” in rural communities.

July 23, 2003
Blagojevich touts benefits of new prescription drug club for seniors and disabled
Program for 1.5 million set to begin January 2004; savings of up to 30 percent expected
CASEY, ILL. – Within the next six months, the nation’s first prescription drug club for seniors and disabled will be in place in Illinois, offering savings of 20 percent to 30 percent, Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today told a group of senior citizens during a visit to the Casey Seniors Center.

July 22, 2003
Blagojevich signs legislation guaranteeing public university tuition costs for four years
Truth-in-tuition starts with 2004-05 school year
URBANA, ILL. – At a time when parents and students are struggling to figure out a way to pay the cost of a college education, Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today signed a “truth-in- tuition” bill to bring some stability to the volatile rise in college tuition costs at the state’s public universities.

July 22, 2003
Governor names farmer and agriculture council
Farmers from around state named to council
SULLIVAN, ILL. – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich established today a 12-member council of farmers and agriculture leaders to assist him in maintaining Illinois agriculture’s competitiveness in the global markets and position the state industry for a profitable future.

July 22, 2003
Governor gives schools more budgetary flexibility
Signs legislation in Windsor on Day 2 of tour through eastern Illinois
WINDSOR, ILL. – During a stop at Windsor Grade School in Shelby County, Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today signed legislation that gives schools much-needed budgetary flexibility to meet emergency or one-time expenses.

July 22, 2003
Governor announces Rural King expansion
New jobs slated for Mattoon
MATTOON, IL - Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today announced that Rural King in Mattoon will expand its warehouse and distribution facility. The company plans to serve an additional ten stores as a result of the expansion, which will also create 30 new jobs.

July 21, 2003
Governor launches Team Illinois in Pembroke
Unprecedented coordination of state resources to provide four of state’s neediest communities with infrastructure for economic development and social services
HOPKINS PARK, ILL. – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today announced Team Illinois, an unprecedented state initiative that pools resources to address the needs of the state’s poorest communities.

July 21, 2003
Blagojevich signs grain code reforms
Legislation will replenish Illinois grain insurance fund; strengthen protection provided to farmers
CHEBANSE, ILL. – Fulfilling a campaign promise to farmers and agriculture organizations, Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today signed legislation to restore the solvency of the state’s grain insurance fund.

July 21, 2003
Governor announces Paxton company expansion
46 more workers for Baltimore Aircoil Company
PAXTON, ILL. – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today announced an expansion of Baltimore Aircoil Company (BAC) in Paxton that will mean the hiring of 46 new workers to join the more than 200 employees currently employed at the facility.

July 17, 2003
Governor signs six-bill package addressing serious problems in Illinois’ criminal justice system
Illinois becomes first state to enact law requiring electronic recording of all homicide interrogations and confessions
CHICAGO – At a press conference at Woodson Library on Chicago’s south side, Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today signed into law six bills aimed at eliminating serious problems that have raised questions about the integrity of Illinois’ criminal justice system in recent years.

July 15, 2003
Governor fills two cabinet positions
Grillo and Nava become 4th and 5th Latino appointments
CHICAGO – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today announced his choices to head the Departments of Financial Institutions and Professional Regulation: Roxanne Nava and Fernando E. Grillo, respectively.

July 14, 2003
Blagojevich appoints Viña as State Fire Marshal
Former fire fighter and investigator steps into new job immediately
CHICAGO – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today appointed former firefighter and investigator Peter F. Viña as the new Illinois State Fire Marshal. He is the first Hispanic and minority to serve as the State Fire Marshal and he begins Thursday, July 17, 2003.

July 10, 2003
Blagojevich signs bill to offer $300 million in new funds to promote use of Illinois coal, create new jobs
Incentives offered to businesses willing to build clean coal power plants
CARTERVILLE, ILL. – During a visit to the Southern Illinois University Coal Development Park, Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today signed legislation designed to further the development of Illinois’ abundant coal reserves by offering $300 million in new bond funds to help finance the construction of advanced technology coal power plants.

July 9, 2003
Governor joins Sen. Susan Garrett to promote new education funding plan
New Education Funding Increased By Nearly $400 Million Overall; Over $144 Million in New Spending for Categoricals; $1.3 Million in New Spending for Deerfield Area Schools

July 7, 2003
Blagojevich approves key advance in women’s health
Signs new law ensuring equity in contraceptive coverage
CHICAGO – Flanked by legislators and women’s health advocates at Chicago’s Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center, Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today signed legislation marking a major step forward for women’s health in Illinois.

July 3, 2003
Blagojevich uses veto power to trim $222 million from fiscal year 2004 budget
Funding eliminated for Corrections’ captains; pay raise for judges, constitutional officers, agency directors, legislators
SPRINGFIELD, ILL. – As part of an effort to continue the fiscal belt tightening necessary to help Illinois deal with a sluggish economy and a legacy of overspending, Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today used his veto power to trim $222 million from the fiscal year spending plan passed last month by the General Assembly.

July 3, 2003
Governor strengthens traffic safety laws in time for summer travel
New seatbelt law is effective immediately
ITASCA, ILL. – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today signed into law three new traffic safety bills, which – according to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) – will make Illinois the first state in the nation to enact all three provisions in the same year.

July 1, 2003
Governor signs legislation expanding KidCare and FamilyCare
Health Care Coverage for 20,000 More Children and 300,000 More Working Parents
CHICAGO Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich signed legislation expanding the KidCare and FamilyCare health insurance programs, providing comprehensive health care coverage for 20,000 additional children and 65,000 working parents in the first year and a total of 300,000 parents over three years.

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