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April 29, 2011
Governor Quinn Statement on Federal Court Decision
MARION – April 29, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today released a statement in response to the recent federal court decision regarding the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ ability to avert crisis in southern Illinois.

April 28, 2011
Governor Quinn Activates 200 Additional National Guard Troops for Flood
Visits State Unified Area Command in Marion
MARION – April 28, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today activated an additional 200 Illinois National Guard troops, bringing the total to more than 320 Guard personnel engaged in the state’s efforts to protect citizens and critical facilities from rapidly-rising flood waters. Governor Quinn also commended private companies for donating needed supplies to the flood response.

April 28, 2011
Arson Awareness Week begins this Sunday, May 1st
OSFM focusing on serial arson’s impact on people and property
SPRINGFIELD – In conjunction with Arson Awareness Week 2011, the Office of the Illinois State Fire Marshal (OSFM) is focusing attention on serial arsonists and is aiding law enforcement, fire departments, and communities with tools and tactics to help prevent arson.

April 28, 2011
Student Group from Chatham Glenwood High School Wins Statewide Radon Video Contest
Video promotes awareness of radioactive gas linked to lung cancer
SPRINGFIELD – A group of teens at Glenwood High School in Chatham are helping spread the message about radon’s health hazards across Illinois through a 60-second YouTube video they produced and submitted to the “2011 Illinois High School Radon Video Contest.” On Thursday, the students learned their video won the contest during a presentation ceremony at the school. Representatives from the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) and the American Lung Association of Illinois (ALA-IL), the contest sponsors, presented a $2,000 prize to Glenwood High School and a $1,000 prize to the students who created the video. The prize money was provided by the ALA-IL.

April 27, 2011
Lt. Governor Simon visits Richland Community College
Complete College Tour highlights math lab, meets with local employers
DECATUR – April 27, 2011. In her campaign to improve college completion rates, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon visited Richland Community College today to learn how the school is improving math instruction and preparing students for jobs of the future.

April 27, 2011
Governor Quinn Announces Full-Fill Aerosol Plant Expansion
$2.5 Million State Investment Package Will Help Danville Company Add Approximately 150 Jobs
SPRINGFIELD – April 27, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn announced today that Danville-area food manufacturer Full-Fill Industries, LLC will expand operations over the next year, doubling its size and adding 150 new jobs to its plant in Henning. The state’s $2.5 million business investment package will leverage an $11 million private investment that will help fund the expansion of the facility and the purchase of new equipment.

April 27, 2011
IDHS Launches New Initiative for Supportive Breastfeeding Environments
SPRINGFIELD - The Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) joins Health Connect One and the University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health to launch a 5-year plan that will help create more supportive environments for breastfeeding mothers. Efforts will focus on workplace, community and hospital environments, as well as on systems and policies to lend more support to breastfeeding mothers.

April 27, 2011
Western Illinois University Receives Governor’s Award for Excellence in Veterans Education
School Also Receives $75,000 Veterans Cash Grant Award for Student Veterans
MACOMB – Western Illinois University today received the Governor’s Award for Excellence in Veterans Education for exemplary efforts in providing greater educational and informational resources for student veterans. Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs (IDVA) Director Dan Grant presented the award to WIU President Al Goldfarb during a ceremony at the Wright Residence Veterans Resource Center, 333 N. Ward St., Macomb, in recognition of the school’s implementation of the Higher Education Veterans Service Act. Governor Pat Quinn signed the legislation in August 2009 to expand resources and information for student veterans at Illinois’ colleges and universities.

April 26, 2011
Governor Quinn Announces New Performing Arts Center at Western Illinois University
$67.8 Million Capital Project Will Create Around 400 Jobs; Leverage Private Investment
MACOMB – April 26, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today joined state and school officials for a ceremonial groundbreaking on the $67.8 million Performing Arts Center at Western Illinois University (WIU) in Macomb. This is one of the largest university construction projects in the Governor’s Illinois Jobs Now! capital program, and construction work is expected to create approximately 400 jobs. The state’s investment will help WIU leverage a significant private donation to support the center’s operation.

April 26, 2011
Governor Quinn Activates Illinois National Guard Troops for Flood Assistance
Visits State Emergency Operations Center
SPRINGFIELD – April 26, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today activated the Illinois National Guard to support flood-fighting and life safety missions in southern Illinois. The initial activation includes up to 125 Guardsmen who are deploying to Marion to assist the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) with emergency response planning. Additional troops may be activated if needed.

April 25, 2011
State Invests $6.2M in Federal Stimulus Funds to Build Supportive Housing for Young Parents
Transformation Project to create safe, affordable apartments
CHICAGO – Forty units of permanent supportive housing for formerly homeless young parents will be built in Chicago as a result of the financial investment of the Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA). IHDA Executive Director Mary R. Kenney today joined Mayor Richard M. Daley and other local officials to celebrate the groundbreaking of the Transformation Project apartments at 5353 W. Chicago Ave. in the Austin neighborhood.

April 25, 2011
Governor Quinn Announces Increased Bicycle Safety Reporting
New Tracking of “Dooring” Crashes Will Identify Problem Areas
CHICAGO – April 25, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn announced today that the state will begin tracking “dooring” crashes – accidents involving bicyclists who are struck by opened doors from parked cars. The change will take effect immediately to help determine locations where road improvements and public outreach efforts may be necessary to protect bicyclists from these dangerous collisions.

April 25, 2011
Tree City USA Program Recognizes “International Year of Forests 2011”
SPRINGFIELD, IL – Illinois Tree City USA and Tree Campus USA program participants are hailing the designation of 2011 as the “International Year of Forests” - an effort promoted by the United Nations to celebrate people’s actions to sustainably manage the world’s forests. The “International Year of Forests 2011” is also being recognized in the U.S. by the USDA Forest Service and National Association of Foresters with the theme “Celebrate Forests, Celebrate Life.” Representatives of Illinois’ Tree City USA communities met recently in Springfield and Palos Hills to celebrate achievements in urban forestry promotion, and to become the first in the state to participate in an official International Year of Forests event.

April 25, 2011
Governor Quinn Announces Key Appointments
Names Tony Godinez to Lead Department of Corrections; Reappoints Leadership of DCEO and Department of Military Affairs
CHICAGO - April 25, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today announced three top appointments to his executive cabinet. Today’s actions are the latest in a series of appointments Governor Quinn is making as he continues to fulfill his commitment to creating jobs, fostering economic development and increasing efficiency and accountability in all areas of state government.

April 25, 2011
Governor Quinn Activates Agencies’ Flood Response for Southern Illinois
Issues Disaster Proclamation to Ensure Support for Affected Areas
CHICAGO – April 25, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today issued a disaster proclamation to ensure state resources are readily available to support local governments affected by a series of severe storms that have affected southern Illinois during the past two weeks. Forecasts for additional heavy rains this week could send swollen waterways even higher and cause widespread flooding throughout the region.

April 22, 2011
Governor Quinn Announces $37.8 Million to Build State Police Forensic Laboratory in Belleville
Capital Investment Will Create 260 Jobs, Provide Region’s Law Enforcement with State-of-the-Art Forensic Facility
CHICAGO - April 22, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today announced $37.8 million in Illinois Jobs Now! capital funding to construct a new Illinois State Police forensic laboratory in Belleville. The facility will provide the Illinois State Police with enhanced crime-solving ability and give police agencies throughout the region a valuable tool for their criminal investigations. The project will create approximately 260 construction jobs and is expected to be completed by late 2012.

April 22, 2011
Governor Pat Quinn Takes Clemency Action
CHICAGO – April 22, 2010. Governor Pat Quinn today granted 85 and denied 189 clemency petitions. This action marks another step in a series of clemency decisions aimed at eliminating a backlog of more than 2,500 cases that built up during the previous administration.

April 21, 2011
2011 Illinois State Fair Grandstand Entertainment Lineup Announced
Country Superstars Lady Antebellum and Jason Aldean Among Scheduled Performers
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – The 2011 Illinois State Fair Grandstand entertainment will feature music, comedy and the return of Lady Antebellum! This year’s fair theme “We’ve Got a Good Thing Growing!” compliments the diverse Grandstand line-up. “I’m very excited about this year’s line-up. We switched it up a bit to include a real variety of entertainment,” Fair Manager Amy Bliefnick said. “We have country, comedy, rock, rap, R&B and even a Broadway musical. There’s something for everyone.”

April 21, 2011
Lt. Governor Simon: State’s ethics form is “weak”
Calls for new standards, requires staff to file financial info
CHICAGO – A day after yet another Illinois governor went on trial for corruption charges, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon urged lawmakers to strengthen existing ethics laws, saying current economic disclosures are weak.

April 21, 2011
State Employees Contribute $2.6 Million to Charities
State agencies to be recognized for outstanding contributions during annual workplace charity drive
SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Central Management Services (CMS) today announced that state agency and university employees raised approximately $2.6 million for charity through the 2010 State and University Employee Combined Appeal (SECA) Campaign. The SECA Advisory Board held an awards ceremony at the Capital City Training Center to recognize the 37 agencies that met or exceeded the projected goals of the workplace charity drive. Governor Pat Quinn proclaimed April 21st as SECA Day in Illinois to recognize the contributions of SECA participants and to encourage charitable giving.

April 21, 2011
Governor Quinn Announces $34.3 Million for Lincoln’s ChalleNGe Academy in Rantoul
Capital Investment Will Create 240 Jobs, Update WWII Era Campus

CHICAGO – April 21, 2001. Governor Pat Quinn today announced $34.3 million in capital funding for needed upgrades at the Lincoln’s ChalleNGe Academy in Rantoul. The Illinois Jobs Now! capital investment will fund campus improvements to enable the Illinois National Guard facility to continue serving at-risk youths, and the project is expected to create 240 construction jobs.

April 20, 2011
Complete College Tour continues at College of DuPage
Lt. Governor Simon learns about 3+1 program, views Homeland Security Education Center
GLEN ELLYN – April 20, 2011. Looking for innovative ways to improve college completion rates, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon brought her Complete College Tour to College of DuPage today to hear about a new way the school plans to graduate criminal justice majors.

April 19, 2011
Governor Quinn Announces State Building Receives U.S. EPA’s Prestigious ENERGY STAR Award
Michael A. Bilandic Building Joins Nation’s Top Energy-Efficient Buildings
CHICAGO – Tuesday April 19, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today announced that the state’s Michael A. Bilandic Building has received the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ENERGY STAR award, recognizing it as one of the most energy-efficient buildings in the nation. The Bilandic Building in Chicago has increased its energy efficiency by nearly 68 percent since 2008, resulting in significantly reduced energy usage and energy cost savings of approximately $100,000 per year.

April 18, 2011
State Commemorates National Fair Housing Month
Illinois Department of Human Rights, Illinois Attorney General and Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation Launch Free Screenings of “American Casino;” a Film on the Foreclosure Crisis
CHICAGO – State officials marked National Fair Housing Month today by launching a week-long, free screening of American Casino, a film on the mortgage loan scheme that caused economic disaster for millions of Americans. Illinois Department of Human Rights (IDHR) Director Rocco Claps was joined by Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan and Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation, Division of Banking Director Manuel Flores to discuss the state’s efforts to protect individuals from discrimination in housing, mortgage fraud and predatory lending practices. Governor Pat Quinn proclaimed April as Fair Housing Month in Illinois to create greater awareness of state laws that prohibit discrimination in housing.

April 18, 2011
IEMA Encourages Earthquake Preparedness on Anniversary of 2008 Quake in Southeastern Illinois
More than 102,000 Illinois residents registered to participate in ‘The Great Central U.S. ShakeOut’ on April 28
SPRINGFIELD – Three years ago, Illinois residents were reminded of the earthquake risk in the Central U.S. when a 5.4 magnitude earthquake occurred. Centered near the southeastern Illinois town of Mt. Carmel, the April 18, 2008, quake caused minimal damage but was felt by people as far away as Chicago. On the third anniversary of that temblor, the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) is encouraging people to be better prepared for earthquakes by participating in ‘The Great Central U.S. ShakeOut” on April 28 at 10:15 a.m.

April 17, 2011
Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs Honors Chicago-area Marine as April 2011 “Veteran of the Month”
SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs (IDVA) today honored Vietnam War Veteran and Purple Heart Awardee Dennis Thompson, a United States Marine veteran, as April 2011 Veteran of the Month during a ceremony at an Executive Committee Meeting of the Disabled American Veterans service organization in Springfield. The Illinois Veteran of the Month award is a distinction that is given to military Veterans who give back to their community and continue to serve other Veterans. IDVA Director Dan Grant presented the award to Thompson, 64, of Alsip, a Chicago suburb.

April 15, 2011
IHDA Board Appoints New Executive Director
Mary R. Kenney brings extensive housing finance background to position
CHICAGO – Members of the Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) Board today appointed Mary R. Kenney as executive director of the state’s housing finance agency. Kenney succeeds Gloria L. Materre, who last month became executive director of the Illinois Liquor Control Commission (ILCC). Kenney previously served as IHDA’s general counsel before taking on the role of acting executive director last month. An attorney with more than 14 years of experience in affordable housing lending, community development and municipal finance, Kenney immediately assumes her new position as Illinois’ chief affordable housing official.

April 15, 2011
Governor Quinn Announces Illinois Relief Effort to Help Victims of Japan Quake and Tsunami
State will Supply 2,000 Radiation Detectors; Illinois Farmers to Donate Vital Supplies
CHICAGO – April 15, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today announced a statewide humanitarian relief effort to harness Illinois’ technological and agricultural resources to provide vital supplies for the victims of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami in Japan. The Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) will donate 2,000 critically-needed radiation detectors to assist the relief effort, and a collective response by the Illinois agricultural community will help supply much-needed agricultural products to Japan. The Governor’s announcement marks the first statewide effort in the U.S. to pool resources and aid for the people of Japan.

April 14, 2011
Statement from Governor Pat Quinn
On Comprehensive Education Reform Legislation
CHICAGO – April 14, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today issued a statement regarding the introduction of comprehensive education reform legislation.

April 14, 2011
Illinois Transportation Secretary Kick-Starts 10,000 Oak Tree Giveaway in Honor of Earth Day
Illinois Students Receive Educational Benefit from Generous Donation of Trees
SPRINGFIELD –Illinois Transportation Secretary Gary Hannig today announced the 10,000 Oak Tree Giveaway of seedlings to school districts throughout Illinois. Many school districts statewide have received oak tree seedlings, which were donated to the Illinois Department of Transportation by Living Lands and Waters. The announcement was made ahead of the designated Earth Day for 2011 in order to reach more students before spring break.

April 14, 2011
Unemployment Rate Falls to 8.8 Percent in March
14th Consecutive Month the Rate has Improved
CHICAGO – The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell for the 14th consecutive month, dropping -0.1 to 8.8 percent in March, according to preliminary data released today by the Illinois Department of Employment Security. This is the lowest unemployment rate reported since February 2009 when it was 8.6 percent. The national rate also fell -0.1 to 8.8 percent in March. The Illinois rate has been equal to or below the U.S. rate for six consecutive months.

April 14, 2011
Lt. Governor Simon calls for map hearings
Applauds efforts to improve public input
SPRINGFIELD – Lt. Governor Sheila Simon today endorsed a plan to hold public hearings on a forthcoming state and congressional legislative map, so that voters can provide feedback on the proposed districts.

April 13, 2011
Governor Quinn Announces Investment to Boost State’s Manufacturing Industry, Keep Hundreds of Jobs in Illinois
State Investment Package to Help Retain Over 300 Jobs at A. Finkl & Sons
CHICAGO – April 12, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today announced a $10.3 million business investment package to help Chicago-based steel manufacturer A. Finkl & Sons Co. expand its operations. The state’s investment will leverage about $150 million in private investment and help keep more 300 jobs in Illinois.

April 12, 2011
Governor Quinn Appoints Members to Illinois Holocaust and Genocide Commission
Commission will Work to Increase Awareness of Genocide
SPRINGFIELD – April 12, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today appointed nine individuals to serve on the Illinois Holocaust and Genocide Commission. Commission members will work to promote education and awareness of the Holocaust and genocide around the world.

April 12, 2011
State Marks Equal Pay Day at Rally in Chicago
Governor Quinn proclaims Equal Pay Day in Illinois
CHICAGO – State officials today marked national Equal Pay Day by joining hundreds of people at a rally in Daley Center Plaza to draw attention to the wage gap that persists between men and women in the workforce. The date marks how far into the current year a woman must work, on average, to earn as much as a man earned the previous year. Governor Pat Quinn proclaimed today as Equal Pay Day in Illinois to increase awareness of the state’s equal pay law and to underscore the importance of pay equity between men and women who do the same work.

April 12, 2011
IEMA Offers Tips for Making Homes Earthquake Resistant
April is Earthquake Preparedness Month in Illinois
SPRINGFIELD – An earthquake can’t be prevented, but the damage it could cause to homes and buildings can be minimized. As part of the state’s observance of Earthquake Preparedness Month, the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) today offered several tips for making structures more earthquake resistant.

April 11, 2011
2011 Illinois State Fair Contest Info Now Available On The Web
Premium books explain the rules and entry deadlines for thousands of state fair contests
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Premium books for the 2011 Illinois State Fair are now available online. The books include the rules, entry forms and prizes for the fair’s more than 8,700 competitive events ranging from livestock competitions to the tastiest breakfast on a stick to the best bocce ball team.

April 11, 2011
IL Dept on Aging is accepting Senior Hall of Fame Nominations
Awards will be presented during a ceremony later this year
SPRINGFIELD – Illinois Department on Aging (IDoA) Director Charles D. Johnson today announced that applications are now available to nominate older adults for the 2011 Illinois Senior Hall of Fame. The annual award recognizes contributions made by residents of the state, ages 65 and older.

April 11, 2011
Governor Quinn Recognizes Participants of the Illinois Innovation Talent Program
Students from 28 Schools Present Final Projects to Peers, Industry
CHICAGO – April 11, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today recognized students from 28 Illinois high schools for their participation in the Illinois Innovation Talent Program. Through the program, students team up with private sector companies or public agencies to compete and collaborate on real world, problem-based learning challenges. The program is designed to improve student achievement and increase college and career readiness.

April 8, 2011
IEMA Continues Sampling to Track Japanese Radiation
Levels detected present no health hazard
SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) today said the latest round of testing to assess the extent of radioactivity in Illinois from the Fukushima nuclear power plants in Japan found trace amounts of radioactive iodine in air, grass, milk and rainwater samples as well as minute levels of cesium in some milk samples. The agency stressed that these findings are still far below established limits and present no health hazard to citizens in Illinois.

April 7, 2011
Governor Quinn Unveils $11.5 Billion Multi-Year Construction Program
Continued Infrastructure Investment will Create 155,000 Jobs
CHICAGO – April 7, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today unveiled the state’s new $11.5 billion multi-year construction program. The program will create 155,000 jobs and spark economic development throughout the state while improving safety and reducing congestion. Driven by the Illinois Jobs Now! capital program, the statewide multi-year plan for fiscal years 2012 through 2017 will improve 3,248 miles of road and replace or rehabilitate 611 bridges. In the upcoming fiscal year, the state is expected to improve 490 miles of road and 105 bridges.

April 6, 2011
Serve Illinois Honors Illinoisans for Exemplary Community Service
Governor’s Volunteer Service Awards Highlight Volunteerism
SPRINGFIELD – Governor Pat Quinn and the Serve Illinois Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service today presented 25 Illinoisans with the Governor’s Volunteer Service Award. The award recognizes volunteers who have made a difference in Illinois and highlights the importance of volunteerism and community service. “Every day in Illinois, thousands of volunteers donate their time and talents to help others and to build stronger communities,” said Governor Quinn. “We honor these individuals that have made positive change in our state and set an example for others to follow with their initiative, creativity and energy.”

April 6, 2011
Illinois Department of Insurance Disciplinary Report for March 2011
CHICAGO - The Illinois Department of Insurance announced today that Director of Insurance Michael T. McRaith issued the following disciplinary orders:

April 6, 2011
Teens Recognized for Winning Entries in State Radon Poster Contest
Top three posters to compete in national radon poster contest
SPRINGFIELD – Posters created by three Illinois students illustrating the hazards of radon gas in homes will soon be competing in a national radon poster contest. The posters were among more than 300 entries in the statewide poster contest sponsored by the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA), the American Lung Association in Illinois (ALA-IL), the University of Illinois Extension Office and the Respiratory Health Association of Metropolitan Chicago. The first place winner in the statewide contest was Jacqueline Rizkallah, a 7th grader at Locke Elementary School in Chicago. Second place was awarded to Tessa Richerson, a 7th grader at Eldorado Middle School in Eldorado, and third place went to Nayely Mendoza, a 7th grader at Locke Elementary School in Chicago. Each of these students will receive a $100 savings bond.

April 6, 2011
State Announces Selection of Managed Care Plans for FY12
Award estimated to save taxpayers $1billion over 10 years
SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS) today announced that it has selected four managed care organizations to provide benefits to state employees, dependents and retirees starting July 1. The plans will also provide care to members of the Local Government Health Plan, the Teachers’ Retirement Insurance Program and College Insurance Program. State officials estimate that the award of these four contracts will result in a savings of approximately $102 million in FY12, and a savings in excess of $1 billion over the life of the contracts.

April 5, 2011
ICJIA Announces Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant Program Awards for Law Enforcement Vehicles
Police agencies in 31 Illinois counties to receive funding
CHICAGO—Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority (ICJIA) Executive Director Jack Cutrone today announced recipients of federal fiscal year 2007 Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant awards for law enforcement vehicles. ICJIA designated more than $810,000 to 42 local law enforcement agencies that demonstrated financial and vehicle needs. A maximum of $20,000 was awarded to each agency, and 75 percent of the funds were designated to departments within communities that had populations of less than 25,000.

April 5, 2011
IDOT Announces 2011 Operation Teen Safe Driving Winners
Illinois Teen Fatalities Declining
SPRINGFIELD – Illinois Department of Transportation Secretary Gary Hannig, Secretary of State Jesse White, the Governor’s Highway Safety Association, Illinois State Police (ISP), Ford Motor Company Fund and The Allstate Foundation today announced the winning schools from each region under the 2011 Operation Teen Safe Driving Program. The winners were selected for their creativity and imagination in developing programs to educate their peers on the dangers of unsafe driving practices. This announcement comes as Illinois records a significant decrease in teen fatalities in automobile crashes since the program began in 2007. In total, 105 high schools statewide were initially selected to participate in the innovative program, modeled after Ford Motor Company Fund’s nationally recognized Ford Driving Skills for Life teen safety program. This is the fourth year of the statewide program.

April 5, 2011
IL Department on Aging Hosts Senate Forum to Promote Intergenerational Leadership to Encourage Reading
Dept on Aging Director leads initiative to encourage interaction among generations
SPRINGFIELD - Illinois Department on Aging (IDoA) Director Charles D. Johnson today convened the fourth Senate Forum on Intergenerational Leadership. The purpose of the daylong forum is to emphasize the importance of generations working together to promote a world class education system. Director Johnson was joined by George Reid, Executive Director of the Illinois Board of Higher Education, to explain how generations working together can benefit communities. The focus of today’s intergenerational leadership forum was to discuss literacy and promote student success in reading. Reading is important for children’s academic success. However, the importance of reading goes far beyond childhood. The development of reading skills is a lifelong process. Adult reading is important for keeping citizens informed and engaged. Readers are more likely to pursue social and civic activities such as volunteering.

April 5, 2011
State-Wide Launch of “Illinois Saves” Financial Literacy Program Brings Financial Benefits to Families
CHICAGO – Today, as part of national Money Smart Week®, State Treasurer Dan Rutherford and Secretary of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) Brent Adams announce the launch of a state-wide effort to help working families improve their financial futures with “Illinois Saves.” The program is also partnering with Consumer Federation of America and the Economic Awareness Council. “I am pleased to be a part of this effort because the treasurer’s office is vested in financial literacy. Financial security is important to each and every one of us, whether we’re talking about government fiscal responsibility or personal financial safety,” said Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford. “The treasurer’s office’s Bank On Illinois program helps people understand and tap into checking accounts as a safe and flexible way to protect money, and I hope anyone who’s not using bank accounts will learn more through Bank On Illinois and Illinois Saves.”

April 4, 2011
Governor Quinn Highlights State’s Preparedness Efforts for Spring Flooding
State Stockpiles Sandbags, Other Supplies in Advance of Potential Floods
CHICAGO – April 4, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today announced the state has taken several actions to ensure it is well prepared for the possibility of severe flooding this spring. Officials continue to closely monitor several Illinois waterways, after snow melt and spring rains have contributed to rising water levels.

April 4, 2011
Transportation Agencies Partner with State Police to Improve Safety, Reduce Crashes in Illinois Work Zones
Coalition Announces National Work Zone Awareness Week to “Drive Zero Fatalities to Reality"
CHICAGO - As the 2011 highway construction season gets under way, the Illinois Department of Transportation, Illinois Tollway, Illinois State Police, Local Laborers Union, road builders and other Illinois Strategic Highway Safety Plan members partnered today to announce their participation in National Work Zone Awareness Week, April 4-8. The multi-agency collaboration is part of an ongoing effort to improve awareness and reduce traffic related crashes, fatalities and injuries in Illinois work zones.

April 1, 2011
Governor Declares April “Earth Month” in Illinois
Presents Environmental Hero Awards, Delivers Keynote Address to Third Annual Sustainable Schools Symposium
CHICAGO – April 1, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today declared the month of April as Earth Month, after delivering the keynote address at the 3rd Annual Sustainable Schools Symposium at Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences. The Governor also presented this year’s Environmental Hero Awards to groups and individuals who have shown a strong commitment to the health and protection of the environment in Illinois.

April 1, 2011
IEMA Highlights Earthquake Preparedness in April
Agency encourages participation in The Great Central U.S. ShakeOut
SPRINGFIELD – Nearly 60,000 Illinois residents have already registered to participate in a multi-state earthquake drill in April, and the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) is encouraging even more groups and individuals to join in “The Great Central U.S. ShakeOut” on April 28. The drill coincides with IEMA’s annual observation of Earthquake Preparedness Month every April.

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