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October
2005


October 31, 2005
Gov. Blagojevich Launches the Keep Warm Illinois Campaign to Prepare State Residents for this Winter’s Record Home Heating Costs
State Agencies and Clear Channel Radio Partner to Help Illinois Families Stay Safe, Warm this Winter
CHICAGO - Governor Rod R. Blagojevich launched the Keep Warm Illinois campaign and website today to help all Illinoisans stay warm, healthy and safe this winter. The Keep Warm Illinois campaign is a comprehensive effort to inform and prepare Illinois residents, especially the elderly, families with small children and persons with disabilities, for record high home heating costs this winter.


October 29, 2005
First Lady Patti Blagojevich honors breast cancer survivors in Illinois
Patti Blagojevich addresses 1,500 breast cancer advocates at the “Everyone is a Star” Y-ME Annual Fashion Show and Luncheon
CHICAGO – In her ongoing efforts to promote breast cancer awareness, First Lady Patti Blagojevich today joined Y-ME Illinois and 1,500 breast cancer advocates at the Y-ME Illinois Annual Fashion Show and Luncheon to honor breast cancer survivors in Illinois and to encourage annual breast cancer screening and mammograms. Early detection has proven to significantly increase a woman’s likelihood of recovery from breast cancer.


October 28, 2005
First Lady dedicates new University Center of Lake County at Grayslake
State contributed $19 million to the $25.6 million project, which will help Lake County residents get a college education
First Lady Patti Blagojevich today joined elected officials, University Center of Lake County board members, and other Illinois educational leaders for the dedication of the new, state-of-the-art University Center of Lake County.


October 27, 2005
Governor Blagojevich poised to make Illinois only state in the nation to offer comprehensive health coverage to every child
All Kids plan wins final legislative approval; Governor to sign legislation
SPRINGFIELD – Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today praised the Illinois General Assembly for approving his landmark All Kids plan and reaffirmed his commitment to signing the bill, which will make Illinois the only state in the nation to provide affordable, comprehensive health insurance for every child in the state. House Bill 806, sponsored by State Senate President Emil Jones and House Speaker Michael J. Madigan, won final legislative approval today when the house approved the bill by a vote of 79 to 28. The Illinois Senate approved the legislation Wednesday.


October 26, 2005
Governor Blagojevich opens new State Emergency Operations Center in Springfield
State-of-the-art SEOC will be the nerve center for the state’s terrorism prevention efforts and response to natural disasters; Governor also thanks over 2,500 first responders who assisted in Louisiana and Mississippi following Hurricane Katrina
SPRINGFIELD – Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today opened Illinois’ new State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC), a state-of-the art facility that will help the state better protect Illinois residents by bringing key terrorism prevention and emergency response assets together in one location. The center will enable decision makers from several state agencies to receive timely, disaster related information that will help them make better decisions to respond to emergencies and to help protect the public in the event of an act of terrorism or a natural disaster.


October 26, 2005
Governor Blagojevich’s All Kids plan passes in Senate, heads to House for final passage
Governor’s plan would make Illinois only state in the country to offer comprehensive health coverage to every child
SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Senate today approved Governor Rod R. Blagojevich’s landmark proposal that would make Illinois the only state in the nation to provide affordable, comprehensive health insurance for every child in the state. After a vote of 32 to 23 in the Senate, the legislation now moves to the Illinois House of Representatives for final passage. House Bill 806, creating All Kids, is sponsored by State Senate President Emil Jones and House Speaker Michael J. Madigan.


October 25, 2005
Illinois State Medical Society endorses Gov. Blagojevich’s plan to provide comprehensive health coverage for every uninsured child in Illinois
ISMS joins growing list of All Kids supporters; More than 400 organizations back Governor’s plan to make Illinois the only state in the country to offer comprehensive health coverage to every child
CHICAGO – The Illinois State Medical Society today endorsed Governor Rod R. Blagojevich’s landmark All Kids proposal that would make Illinois the only state in the nation to provide affordable, comprehensive health insurance for every child in the state. The Illinois State Medical Society (ISMS) represents more than 14,000 physicians from all specialties and practice types, as well as advocates for patients. ISMS joins more than 400 organizations representing medical facilities, doctors, nurses, educators, labor, child advocates and clergy that have endorsed the Governor’s plan since he introduced it two weeks ago.


October 25, 2005
Governor Blagojevich addresses Illinois General Assembly about proposal to provide comprehensive health coverage for every child in Illinois
Governor delivers speech to joint session of General Assembly; encourages legislators to vote for All Kids during fall veto session
SPRINGFIELD – To a rare joint session of the Illinois General Assembly on the first day of the 2005 fall veto session, Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today urged legislators to vote for his All Kids proposal, legislation that would make Illinois the only state in the nation to make affordable, comprehensive health insurance available to every child in the state.


October 25, 2005
Governor Blagojevich’s All Kids plan passes in Senate Committee, heads to full Senate for vote
Governor’s plan would make Illinois only state in the country to offer comprehensive health coverage to every child
SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Senate Executive Committee today approved Governor Rod R. Blagojevich’s landmark proposal that would make Illinois the only state in the nation to provide affordable, comprehensive health insurance for every child in the state. Sponsored by State Senate President Emil Jones and House Speaker Michael J. Madigan, House Bill 806 creating All Kids now moves to the full senate for consideration.


October 25, 2005
Statement from Governor Rod R. Blagojevich on the passing of legendary Civil Rights Leader Rosa Parks
Statement from Governor Rod R. Blagojevich on the passing of legendary Civil Rights Leader Rosa Parks


October 24, 2005
New Families USA study finds ‘All Kids’ would add $87 million in new business activity and $30.7 million in new wages statewide
US Dept. of Commerce “Input-Output” Model Shows Significant Benefits for Illinois Economy from ‘All Kids’; Families USA, Campaign for Better Health Care and Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce endorse Governor’s plan to provide health insurance to every uninsured child in the state
CHICAGO – Families USA, a non-partisan national health care policy organization, today released a new report finding that Governor Rod R. Blagojevich’s All Kids program could generate $87 million in new business activity and nearly $31 million in new wages statewide in its first year of implementation. The report was released today at a press conference in Chicago where Families USA, the Campaign for Better Health Care and the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce endorsed the All Kids program.


October 23, 2005
Thousands of Illinoisans rally in support of Governor Blagojevich’s All Kids plan to provide comprehensive health coverage for every uninsured child in the state
Leading Illinois Legislators, union leaders, community advocates, health care advocates, and families come together to build momentum for ‘All Kids’ before next week’s fall legislative veto session
CHICAGO – Thousands of Illinoisans today came together in Chicago for a rally in support of Governor Blagojevich’s All Kids plan to provide comprehensive health coverage for every uninsured child in the state. They were joined by members of Illinois’ Congressional delegation, state legislators, union leaders, community advocates and concerned families who urged the Illinois General Assembly to pass the All Kids proposal during the fall veto session, which begins on Tuesday, October 25.


October 21, 2005
Law enforcement agencies, safety advocates urge lawmakers to uphold Governor’s key gun control vetoes
Overriding vetoes would place police and the public safety at risk
CHICAGO - Illinois State Police (ISP) Director Larry G. Trent was joined today by the members of the Illinois General Assembly, the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police and gun safety advocates seeking to uphold Governor Rod R. Blagojevich’s vetoes of Senate Bill 57, Senate Bill 2104 and House Bill 340. Backed by the National Rifle Association (NRA), these bills, if enacted, would have mandated the destruction of all gun purchase records, eliminated the waiting-period for gun owners trading in weapons, and overridden laws dealing with transportation of firearms in local communities.


October 21, 2005
Illinois Academy of Family Physicians endorses Gov. Blagojevich’s plan to provide comprehensive health coverage for every uninsured child in Illinois
IAFP joins growing list of All Kids supporters; More than 400 organizations back Governor’s plan to make Illinois the only state in the country to offer comprehensive health coverage to every child
CHICAGO – The Illinois Academy of Family Physicians (IAFP) today endorsed Governor Rod R. Blagojevich’s landmark All Kids proposal that would make Illinois the only state in the nation to provide affordable, comprehensive health insurance for every child in the state. The Illinois Academy of Family Physicians (IAFP) is a professional medical society that represents 2,100 practicing family physicians throughout Illinois. IAFP joins more than 400 organizations representing medical facilities, doctors, nurses, educators, labor, child advocates and clergy that have endorsed the Governor’s plan since he introduced it two weeks ago.


October 21, 2005
Governor Blagojevich Lowers Thermostats at State Buildings to Reduce Winter Heating Costs
Emergency Energy Conservation Plan to Save State Millions
CHICAGO – Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today ordered the thermostats lowered in thousands of state facilities to reduce the state’s winter heating costs. Setting back the thermostat in state office buildings and other facilities from November 1st through April 15, 2006 will save the state an estimated $4 million in heating costs. The Governor took this action as part of his Emergency Energy Assistance Initiative launched last month to confront steep increases in winter heating costs due to record-high natural gas prices.


October 20, 2005
Illinois Hospital Association endorses Gov. Blagojevich’s plan to provide comprehensive health coverage for every uninsured child in Illinois
IHA joins growing list of All Kids supporters; More than 400 organizations back Governor’s plan to make Illinois the only state in the country to offer comprehensive health coverage to every child
CHICAGO – At a press conference in the lobby of the University of Chicago’s Comer Children’s Hospital on Chicago’s South Side, the Illinois Hospital Association today endorsed Governor Rod R. Blagojevich’s landmark All Kids proposal that would make Illinois the only state in the nation to provide affordable, comprehensive health insurance for every child in the state. The Illinois Hospital Association (IHA) represents approximately 200 hospitals and health systems in Illinois and the patients and communities they serve. IHA joins more than 400 organizations representing medical facilities, doctors, nurses, educators, labor, child advocates and clergy that have endorsed the Governor’s plan since he introduced it two weeks ago.


October 15, 2005
First Lady to present Governor’s PATH Award to noted breast cancer researcher during the State’s first Pink Potluck event
Patti Blagojevich also presents a PATH Award to pediatric ophthalmologist at the American Academy of Ophthalmology annual meeting; Awards highlight community efforts to provide quality health care to women and children and highlight Governor’s All Kids program to offer comprehensive and affordable health insurance to every child in Illinois
CHICAGO – First Lady Patti Blagojevich today recognized the efforts of two health care professionals, by giving Governor Rod R. Blagojevich’s People Are Today’s Heroes (PATH) Award to Dr. Olufunmilayo I. Olopade for her dedication to breast cancer research, and to Dr. Marilyn Miller, a pediatric ophthalmologist for her devotion to the children of Illinois for over 30 years. The First Lady presented Dr. Olopade with the PATH Award at the State’s first “Pink Potluck,” a social event that promotes breast cancer awareness, where women were offered various screenings including mammograms and cervical cancer screenings. The First Lady, also highlighted the Governor’s All Kids health insurance proposal, a landmark program that will make Illinois the first and only state in the nation to provide comprehensive, affordable health insurance to all the state’s children.


October 14, 2005
Gov. Blagojevich Announces Opening of First Interstate Child Support Office on Illinois/Iowa Border
New Partnership Will Improve Communication, Increase Child Support Collections
CHICAGO - As part of his continued efforts to increase child support collections in Illinois, Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today announced that the state of Illinois will join forces with the state of Iowa to increase enforcement of child support laws through the opening of a new, jointly staffed child support enforcement office in Rock Island, IL. Located close to the state line, the new facility will have one full time employee from each state that will work together to ensure improved interstate information sharing, faster collection of court-ordered child support and more efficient enforcement of child support laws.


October 13, 2005
Gov. Blagojevich’s plan to provide comprehensive health coverage for every child in Illinois earns key endorsements
More than 200 organizations support All Kids – the Governor’s plan to make Illinois the only state in the country to offer comprehensive health coverage to every child
CHICAGO – More than 200 organizations signed letters that were presented to Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today in support of his landmark All Kids proposal that would make Illinois the only state in the nation to provide affordable, comprehensive health insurance for every child in the state. Last week, the Governor announced his plan to ensure that every child in Illinois has access to affordable health insurance. The groups joining the Governor today represent hospitals, doctors, nurses, educators, labor, child advocates and clergy.


October 13, 2005
State to Deliver 100s of Computers to Gulf Region Police Agencies
SPRINGFIELD – The State of Illinois will deliver hundreds of high-end government-surplus computers to law enforcement agencies in Louisiana who are trying to recover from floodwaters that deluged the Gulf Region after Hurricane Katrina.


October 12, 2005
Gov. Blagojevich and Lt. Gov. Quinn meet with U.S. Army Secretary to relay concerns from families of fallen Illinois soldiers; Recommend improvements to casualty protocol in Illinois
After hearing from families of fallen Illinois soldiers, State officials request improved casualty notification practices
CHICAGO – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich and Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn today met with U.S. Secretary of the Army, Dr. Francis J. Harvey, to describe problems Illinois families have had with the Army’s procedures for notifying next of kin when a soldier is killed. The two also presented recommendations for improving the Casualty Assistance protocol in Illinois, which is the program for providing death notification and follow-up support for families of fallen Illinois soldiers. The Governor and Lt. Governor requested the meeting with the Army’s highest official after hearing from several Illinois families who encountered insensitive casualty assistance officers, delays in notification and other problems after their loved ones were killed in the line of duty.


October 11, 2005
Illinois Utilities Agree to Gov. Blagojevich’s Request to Waive Reconnection and Deposit Fees for Low-Income Households
Agreement will maximize the benefits of LIHEAP funding intended to keep thousands of vulnerable Illinoisans warm this winter
CHICAGO – Governor Rod R. Blagojevich announced today that Illinois’ major utility companies – Ameren, Nicor Gas, and Peoples Energy – have agreed to his request to waive reconnection fees and suspend deposit requirements for customers receiving benefits through the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). Commonwealth Edison will waive deposits for LIHEAP customers living in buildings heated entirely by electricity. In September, Governor Blagojevich requested that the utilities suspend the fees and deposits to ensure that LIHEAP funding was being used directly for heating costs, not administrative add-ons, for low-income Illinois residents coping with unprecedented increases in home heating costs projected for this winter.


October 7, 2005
GOV. BLAGOJEVICH ANNOUNCES IMPORTANT OPPORTUNITY RETURNS SUPPORT IS BRINGING U.S. HEADQUARTERS OF WORLD?S LARGEST STEEL MAKER AND MORE THAN 200 JOBS TO CHICAGO
CHICAGO - Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today announced that Mittal Steel, the world’s largest steel producer, has chosen to locate its U.S. corporate headquarters in downtown Chicago, bringing 212 new jobs to Illinois. The company’s decision was made possible in large part due to $7.5 million in Opportunity Returns support. Mittal’s executive offices will be located in the new One South Dearborn building, which is scheduled for completion in December.


October 7, 2005
Gov. Blagojevich Brings Together State, Congressional and Local Leaders to Launch Statewide Winter Assistance Days
Unprecedented Coordination on State, City and Community Levels
CHICAGO – Joining forces with over 20 state and local leaders, Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today announced a series of Winter Assistance Events scheduled across the state to offer members of low-income households the opportunity to apply for Low Income Energy Assistance (LIHEAP) grants, receive free weatherization kits and learn important information on several state healthcare programs.


October 6, 2005
Governor Blagojevich unveils landmark proposal to provide comprehensive health coverage for every child in Illinois
“All Kids” plan will give parents of the 253,000 uninsured children in Illinois access to affordable health coverage
CHICAGO – Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today unveiled a landmark proposal that would make Illinois the first state in the nation to provide affordable, comprehensive health insurance for every child in the state. At a meeting with several middle-income families from the Chicago area who all make too much to qualify for state-funded healthcare, but cannot afford the high cost of private insurance, the Governor laid out his plan to ensure that every child in Illinois has access to affordable health insurance. Of the 253,000 children in Illinois without health insurance, more than half come from working and middle class families who earn too much to qualify for programs like KidCare, but not enough to afford private health insurance. The Governor’s program would make comprehensive health insurance available to children, with parents paying monthly premiums and co-payments for doctors’ visits and prescription drugs at affordable rates.


October 5, 2005
Governor Blagojevich proclaims ENERGY STAR: Change a Light, Change the World Day in Illinois
Governor encourages Illinoisans to switch to energy-efficient lighting to save money and conserve energy
CHICAGO – In an effort to help Illinoisans conserve energy, save money, and reduce greenhouse emissions, Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today proclaimed Wednesday October 5th as ENERGY STAR Change a Light, Change the World Day, with a pledge to change one light at home to an energy-efficient model.


October 3, 2005
Gov. Blagojevich accepts wager with Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney on Chicago White Sox and Boston Red Sox series
Winner depends on outcome of American League Division Series
CHICAGO – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today accepted a wager proposed by Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, as the Chicago White Sox prepare to face the Boston Red Sox in the American League Division Series. The White Sox will host the Red Sox for the first two games of the series, beginning Tuesday afternoon at U.S. Cellular Field on Chicago’s South Side.


October 2, 2005
First Lady of Illinois launches breast cancer awareness month and urges African-American women to get screened
African-American women mortality rates significantly higher than Caucasian women; Patti Blagojevich announces $700,000 in cancer research grants
CHICAGO, Ill. – First Lady Patti Blagojevich was joined by Reverend James T. Meeks, his wife Jamell Meeks and thousands of parishioners at Salem Baptist Church in Chicago today to urge women to get their annual mammogram and educate themselves about breast cancer. First Lady Patti Blagojevich kicked off the awareness month by encouraging African-American women and members of their churches to host “Pink Potlucks,” a social event that promotes women’s health awareness. In addition, Mrs. Blagojevich announced $700,000 in Penny Severns Breast, Cervical and Ovarian Cancer Research Grants. The grants are generated from donations, an income tax check off and state general revenue funds dedicated to research.


October 1, 2005
Gov. Blagojevich announces Medicare prescription drug plan partnerships for Illinois Cares Rx
The Governor’s Illinois Cares Rx Caravan to make 130 more stops in October and November to help Seniors and Disabled make informed decisions about prescription drug coverage
CHICAGO – Because of changes in the federal Medicare prescription drug program, in just more than a month seniors across the state will have to choose from nearly 20 different prescription drug plans. But, the choice for Illinois seniors and persons with disabilities will be clear. Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today announced that the State of Illinois is partnering with two prescription drug plans, UnitedHealth Group and PacifiCare, to coordinate the new Illinois Cares Rx prescription drug program. Illinois Cares Rx will fill in the gaps created by the new Medicare Part D program. The Governor also announced the second wave of outreach events for his Illinois Cares Rx Caravan to inform seniors and persons with disabilities about upcoming changes to Medicare and updates to the state prescription drug program.

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