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April 30, 2012
Illinois Transportation Secretary Unveils “Transforming Transportation for Tomorrow”
New Multi-year Program Contains $9.2 billion for Highways; Combines Planning, Programming for Highways, Airports, Rail and Mass Transit
SPRINGFIELD – Illinois Transportation Secretary Ann L. Schneider today unveiled “Transforming Transportation for Tomorrow,” the state’s first multi-modal transportation improvement program. The new program document combines the Illinois Department of Transportation’s (IDOT) newly proposed multi-year highway program for FY 2013-2018 with the proposed multi-year programs for public transportation (FY 2013-2017), rail (FY 2013-2017) and aeronautics (FY 2013-2015), and is being introduced in a new streamlined format to reinforce the multi-modal nature of transportation in Illinois.

April 29, 2012
Governor Quinn Proclaims “Jay Leno Day” in Illinois
CHICAGO – April 29, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn proclaimed Sunday, April 29th “Jay Leno Day” Illinois in honor of the late-night comedian’s work on behalf of Omni Youth Services, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary working towards positive change in communities through counseling, mentoring, and substance abuse treatment for at-risk youth and their families. The text of the proclamation is below.

April 28, 2012
Governor Quinn Proclaims “Philip Humber Day” in Illinois
CHICAGO – April 28, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn proclaimed today “Philip Humber Day” in Illinois in honor of the White Sox pitcher throwing only the 21st perfect game in Major League Baseball history. The Governor will present a framed proclamation to Humber and the White Sox before tonight’s game against the Boston Red Sox. The text of the proclamation is below.

April 28, 2012
Illinois Marks Workers’ Memorial Day
Department of Labor Joins Communities Statewide to Remember Fallen Workers
CHICAGO—The Illinois Department of Labor (IDOL) is marking Workers’ Memorial Day on April 28 which honors workers killed, injured or whose health has been affected while on the job, by participating in various memorial services across the state. Director Joseph Costigan and the members of the Safety Inspection and Education Division (SIED) are joining workers and families as they remember loved ones who died from injuries or illnesses from the workplace. The Department is participating in events commemorating Workers’ Memorial Day in Alton, Bloomington, Decatur, Rockford, Peoria, Quad Cities and Springfield.

April 27, 2012
Statement from Governor Pat Quinn on Bill “Moose” Skowron
CHICAGO – April 27, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today issued a statement on the passing of Major League Baseball legend Bill “Moose” Skowron, an Illinois-native who won five world championships with the New York Yankees and the Los Angeles Dodgers before joining the Chicago White Sox as a player and later in their community relations office.

April 27, 2012
Governor Quinn, Mayor Emanuel, Sen. Durbin and Others Announce Key Improvements Along Northern Red Line Stations
$86 Million Initial Project is Part of $1 Billion Rehabilitation of City’s Busiest Train Line
CHICAGO – April 27, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Senator Dick Durbin gathered today to announce CTA Northern Red Line station improvements that will be taking place in the coming weeks.

April 27, 2012
Honoring Illinois' Fallen
United States and Illinois flags at half-staff from Sunrise, Saturday, April 28, 2012 until Sunset, Monday, April 30, 2012.
The Department of Central Management Services has received notice from Governor Quinn's Office that all persons or entities covered by the Illinois Flag Display Act are to fly the flags at half-staff from Sunrise, Saturday, April 28, 2012 until Sunset, Monday, April 30, 2012.

April 27, 2012
IDOT Highlights Commitment to Sustainability Practices During Earth Week
Agency Promotes Green Initiatives Statewide
SPRINGFIELD — Marking national Earth Week in Illinois, Transportation Secretary Ann Schneider today highlighted several innovative sustainability practices and programs under way across the state. Schneider underscored the department’s commitment to activities that build environmental awareness, preserve state funds, and make the most effective use of existing public resources. “Under Governor Quinn’s leadership, IDOT remains committed to implementing and promoting environmental sustainability initiatives wherever feasible,” Secretary Schneider said. “We consistently support and employ sound environmental practices and look forward to positively impacting communities across the state.”

April 27, 2012
Illinois Department of Insurance Disciplinary Report for January 2012
CHICAGO – The Illinois Department of Insurance today announced the following disciplinary orders: Alliance Service Group of Illinois, Inc. & Robert J. Baldassari, Franklin Park - The Business Entity license and the insurance producer license revoked effective January 20, 2012. Alliance Service Group of Illinois and Mr. Baldassari had been licensed as public adjustors since May 4, 2011 and May 16, 2007, respectively. The licenses were revoked as a result of an investigation which revealed that Business Entity and insurance producer misappropriated monies required held in trust, remitted an insufficient funds check to a consumer in payment of a claim, entered an improper contract with the consumer, and has failed to pay the consumer’s claim. The Order of Revocation includes $11,959.01 in restitution to a consumer and a $30,000 civil penalty.

April 26, 2012
Governor Quinn Honored for Work to Improve Life for People with Developmental Disabilities in Illinois
Receives The Arc of Illinois “2012 President’s Award” for Rebalancing Initiative That Expands Community Care
CHICAGO – April 26, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today received The Arc of Illinois 2012 President’s Award for his leadership to improve life for people with developmental disabilities by rebalancing Illinois’ approach to providing care. The Governor’s Rebalancing Initiative uses a person-centered approach to increase the number of people with disabilities living in communities across Illinois. The Arc of Illinois, a non-profit statewide advocacy organization representing over 220,000 individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families, presented the award to Governor Quinn at its 62nd Annual Convention. Governor Quinn is the only Illinois governor to ever receive the award.

April 25, 2012
ICED Honors Legislator, State Employee, Non-Profit, and Media for Hiring and Promoting the Independence of People with Disabilities
SPRINGFIELD – Lt. Governor Sheila Simon joined Illinois Department of Human Rights (IDHR) Director Rocco J. Claps and Department of Illinois Human Services Secretary (IDHS) Michelle R.B. Saddler today at the State Fairgrounds to present a series of awards from the Interagency Committee on Employees with Disabilities (ICED).

April 25, 2012
Simon applauds House committee for passing math bill
Bill authorizes state to recommend content, teaching methods for each year of high school
SPRINGFIELD – Illinois middle and high schools are one step closer to accessing statewide math curricula thanks to a bill supported by Lt. Governor Sheila Simon that passed the House Elementary and Secondary Education Committee unanimously today.

April 24, 2012
Governor Quinn Announces New School Construction Project
Erie Elementary Charter School Expands Educational Opportunities for Low-Income Students
CHICAGO – April 24, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today continued his commitment to improving education in Illinois by joining students, parents, advocates and community leaders to break ground on an addition to Erie Elementary Charter School (EECS). The state is providing $12 million in Illinois Jobs Now! capital funds to build the addition, which will help the school expand its innovative curriculum and its use of technology to improve learning.

April 24, 2012
Transportation Agencies, Law Enforcement and Highway Safety Advocates Launch Embrace the Orange Campaign
Coalition Kicks Off Work Zone Awareness Week in Illinois
CHICAGO — As the 2012 construction season gets into full swing, Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), Illinois State Toll Highway Authority, Illinois State Police (ISP), Local Laborers Union, Illinois Road and Transportation Builders Association and other highway safety partners today launched the Embrace the Orange campaign and announced their participation in National Work Zone Awareness Week, April 23-27. The coalition is leading efforts to help reduce traffic related crashes, injuries and fatalities in work zones.

April 23, 2012
Governor Quinn Announces Studies on Circle Interchange Reconstruction
Engineering Work First Step Toward Reducing Delays, Harmful Emissions
CHICAGO – Monday, April 23, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn announced today that the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) will begin engineering studies for a major reconstruction project to add much-needed capacity to the Circle Interchange in the heart of Chicago. The interchange, where the Kennedy, Dan Ryan and Eisenhower expressways converge, along with Congress Parkway, carries more than 300,000 vehicles a day and remains widely regarded as one of the nation’s worst bottlenecks.

April 23, 2012
Quinn Administration Partners with National Event to Help Chicago-area Homeowners
Free Federal, State Resources Available for Homeowners Facing Foreclosure
ROSEMONT – To further Governor Pat Quinn’s commitment to protect Illinois families and communities from foreclosure, the Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) today helped kick off the free Help for Homeowners Community Event at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont. IHDA Executive Director Mary R. Kenney participated in the Help for Homeowners Community Event, the result of a nationwide outreach initiative by the Obama administration, the HOPE NOW Alliance and NeighborWorks® America. Struggling homeowners attending the event at the convention center were connected - for free - with their mortgage servicer and a HUD-approved housing counselor to discuss their options.

April 23, 2012
Criminal Prosecutors Added to IDES to Fight Unemployment Benefits Fraud
New Positions Will Step Up Enforcement, Recoup Taxpayer Dollars and Prosecute Offenders
CHICAGO – As part of Governor Quinn’s ongoing effort to combat unemployment fraud and protect taxpayer dollars, two prosecuting attorney positions have been created to assist the investigative staff at the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES), Director Jay Rowell announced today. Under Governor Quinn’s direction, the IDES and Attorney General’s partnership will enhance unemployment fraud enforcement efforts. The prosecutors, who are Assistant Attorneys General, will allow the IDES and the Attorney General’s office to increase fraud prosecutions involving the unemployment insurance program. The new IDES prosecutors also will allow the IDES to pursue criminal proceedings in cases that would have been targeted only for the recovery of the stolen benefit dollars, largely through tax garnishments.

April 23, 2012
Department of Insurance Announces $500 Million Settlement with MetLife
Illinois DOI lead multi-state effort to examine use of Social Security records
CHICAGO – A six-state task force led by the Illinois Department of Insurance (DOI) today announced that the states have reached a multi-million dollar settlement with Metropolitan Life Insurance Company and its life insurance affiliates (“MetLife”). Under the settlement, MetLife and its affiliates agreed to pay more than $500 million in life insurance benefits and also agreed to pay $40 million to states that are a party to the settlement to pay for stepped up monitoring by the states. The settlement is a result of a multi-state examination led by Illinois which investigated MetLife’s use of the Social Security Administration’s “Death Master File” (DMF) to confirm the death of its deceased policyholders. The exam revealed that while MetLife used information from the DMF to stop annuity payments to policyholders, it did not use that information to identify beneficiaries who may have been eligible for payment benefits under life and endowment policies.

April 23, 2012
Nation’s first Cantonese and Mandarin alcohol training classes held in Chicago’s Chinatown
CHICAGO—A new public safety initiative was launched today in Chicago’s Chinatown, thanks to a unique coalition of partners at the local, state, and national levels. For the first time in the United States, alcohol training was taught in the Asian languages of Cantonese and Mandarin. During the training, students from the hospitality industry learned how to spot signs of over-consumption and detect fraudulent identification.

April 22, 2012
Governor Quinn Announces Grant to Improve Energy Efficiency at Amtrak Train Yard on Earth Day
Illinois Energy Now Program Reduces State’s Environmental Footprint, Creates Energy Savings, and Helps Amtrak Save $2 Million Per Year
CHICAGO – April 22, 2012. Today on Earth Day, Governor Pat Quinn announced that the state awarded Amtrak a $300,000 energy efficiency grant to assist the passenger rail agency with upgrading its train yard in Chicago. The grant, funded through the Illinois Energy Now (IEN) program, will significantly reduce Amtrak’s natural gas consumption and empower them to save millions of dollars annually.

April 20, 2012
Governor Quinn Proposes Bold Plan to Stabilize the Public Pension System
Plan Eliminates Unfunded Liability by 2042; Changes Will Save Taxpayers Billions
CHICAGO – April 20, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today announced a bold plan that secures public workers’ retirement while fixing the state’s pension problem that has been created over decades of fiscal mismanagement. The proposal is expected to save taxpayers $65 to $85 billion based on current actuarial assumptions. The changes will lead to greater certainty in Illinois’ business climate, respond to concerns from ratings’ agencies regarding the state’s unfunded pension liability and support the continuation of the state’s capital plan that is putting hundreds of thousands of Illinois residents back to work. The Governor’s proposal follows weeks of discussion by the Governor’s pension working group.

April 20, 2012
Department of Transportation Opens Bidding for Made-in-America Passenger Rail Cars
First Multistate Order for Standardized Rail Cars Will Help Boost American Manufacturers
WASHINGTON – Rail car manufacturers across the country will have an opportunity to submit bids to produce the first American-made, standardized passenger rail cars, U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood announced today. The $551 million Request for Proposals (RFP) to manufacture approximately 130 new bi-level passenger rail cars in America comes from a groundbreaking multi-state effort to jointly purchase standardized rail equipment to be used on Amtrak’s intercity routes in California, Illinois, Michigan, Indiana, Missouri, and potentially Iowa. The funding is being provided by the Federal Railroad Administration’s High-Speed and Intercity Passenger Rail Program.

April 20, 2012
IEMA Joins FEMA, NOAA to Promote First National Severe Weather Preparedness Week April 22-28
Encouraging People to Know Their Risk, Take Action and Be a ‘Force of Nature’
SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) will join with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) for the first National Severe Weather Preparedness Week April 22-28. Throughout the week, federal, state and local agencies across the nation will encourage people to know their severe weather risks, take action to be prepared and set an example for others.

April 19, 2012
Statement from Governor Pat Quinn
On Durbin – Kirk Fairness in Federal Disaster Declarations Act
SPRINGFIELD – April 19, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today issued the following statement regarding the Fairness in Federal Disaster Declarations Act proposal introduced by Senator Dick Durbin and Senator Mark Kirk.

April 19, 2012
Governor Quinn Announces Plan to Stabilize Illinois’ Medicaid System
Proposal Saves Medicaid System for Millions
SPRINGFIELD – April 19, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today announced a plan to stabilize Illinois’ Medicaid system and prevent collapse of the program, one of his top priorities this session. The Governor’s plan creates $2.7 billion in Medicaid savings – which includes more than $2 billion in Medicaid reductions and federal matching funds from additional revenues on tobacco products. Today’s proposal follows weeks of productive talks led by the governor’s office with a working group comprised of members from all four legislative caucuses, as well as meetings with numerous provider groups.

April 19, 2012
Governor Quinn Honors Illinois Residents for Exemplary Community Service
Governor’s Volunteer Service Awards Honor Service, Leadership
SPRINGFIELD – Thursday, April 19, 2012. On behalf of Governor Pat Quinn, the Serve Illinois Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service presented 24 Illinois residents with the Governor’s Volunteer Service Award today during a reception at the Executive Mansion. The award recognizes volunteers who have made a difference in Illinois, and highlights the importance of volunteerism and community service.

April 19, 2012
Statement from Governor Pat Quinn
On Job Creation Success in Illinois and Today’s Baxter Jobs Announcement
SPRINGFIELD – April 19, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today issued the following statement regarding March job creation and falling unemployment in Illinois.

April 19, 2012
Simon: Restore funding to Urbana rape crisis center
Strip club fee common sense way to fund sexual assault prevention
URBANA – Lt. Governor Sheila Simon visited a local rape crisis center today as advocates prepared for its annual Take Back the Night rally. Simon urged lawmakers to restore funding to the center through a $5 entrance fee at strip clubs with alcohol.

April 18, 2012
Lt. Governor Simon accepting applications to military committee
SPRINGFIELD – Lt. Governor Sheila Simon announced today that her Interagency Military Base Support and Economic Development Committee (IMBSEDC) is currently accepting applications for two new citizen members. The volunteer group advocates for the retention and reuse of the state’s military bases and works to foster a strong economic connection between the installations and their local economies.

April 18, 2012
Lt. Gov. Simon to host listening post in Gibson City
Feedback on jobs, education and health care will lead to rural action plan
GIBSON CITY – As chair of the Governor’s Rural Affairs Council, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon will host a rural listening post in Gibson City on Thursday afternoon to gather ideas on how to improve the quality of life in rural communities.

April 18, 2012
IDES Director Jay Rowell Statement Following Federal Indictment Of $8.7 Million in Unemployment Insurance Fraud
CHICAGO – Jay Rowell, Director of the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES), issued the following statement today after U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald’s office announced criminal charges alleging unemployment insurance fraud. The IDES brought the case to federal prosecutors and provided detailed analysis critical to the investigation and subsequent charges.

April 17, 2012
Conference Highlights Governor Quinn’s Commitment to Affordable Housing
Two-Day Event Features HUD Secretary Donovan, Assistant Treasury Secretary Eberly and Housing Industry Leaders from Across Illinois
CHICAGO – April 17, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn sent a message of welcome to Illinois to federal housing leaders to Illinois as they addressed the 500 attendees at the Illinois Governor’s Conference on Affordable Housing at Chicago’s Navy Pier. Governor Quinn commends the state’s housing industry leaders for their dedication to ensure working families, seniors and people with disabilities access to have safe, affordable housing.

April 17, 2012
Governor Quinn Announces Lafarge Moving U.S. Headquarters to Illinois
Company to Relocate from Virginia and Create 90+ Illinois Jobs
CHICAGO – April 17, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today announced that Lafarge North America is investing approximately $10 million to relocate its U.S. headquarters from Virginia to Illinois. Lafarge, one of the largest cement, aggregate and concrete manufacturers in the world, will create more than 90 jobs in Illinois in the first two years and likely more than 100 jobs over three to four years. By moving its U.S. headquarters to Illinois, Lafarge will gain access to Illinois’ pool of highly-skilled workers, world-class transportation infrastructure and central location. Governor Quinn personally recruited Lafarge and met with its senior leadership during a recent economic trade mission to Europe.

April 17, 2012
Dept of Insurance Recognized for Exemplary Performance of its Senior Health Insurance Program
State ranks #1 nationwide on most improved overall performance
SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Insurance (DOI) has received recognition from the U. S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) that Illinois excels in several areas related to exemplary performance for its Senior Health Insurance Program. The Senior Health Insurance Program (SHIP) is a free statewide health insurance counseling service for Medicare beneficiaries and their caregivers. SHIP is sponsored by the Illinois Department of Insurance. CMS notified DOI earlier this month and commended the department for the high ranking received on its National Performance Reporting (NPR) stats.

April 17, 2012
Simon to hold new round of Classrooms First hearings
Public input solicited on school district efficiency recommendations
SPRINGFIELD – The Classrooms First Commission is seeking public input on a set of draft recommendations approved Tuesday that would make it easier for school districts to consolidate and help them save up to $1 billion in operations costs by sharing services, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon said.

April 16, 2012
Honoring Illinois' Fallen
United States and Illinois flags at half-staff immediately until Sunset, Wednesday, April 18, 2012.
The Department of Central Management Services has received notice from Governor Quinn's Office that all persons or entities covered by the Illinois Flag Display Act are to fly the flags at half-staff immediately until Sunset, Wednesday, April 18, 2012.

April 16, 2012
Governor Quinn Urges Illinoisans to Volunteer Time and Talents during National Volunteer Week
Serve.Illinois.gov Connects Volunteers with Opportunities Across the State
SPRINGFIELD – Monday, April 16, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today joined the Illinois Department of Human Services (DHS) and the Serve Illinois Commission in encouraging Illinoisans to give back to their communities by volunteering during National Volunteer Week, April 15-21, 2012. Those who are interested in volunteering can find a resourceful search portal that connects them to over 100,000 volunteer opportunities throughout Illinois by visiting Serve.Illinois.gov.

April 16, 2012
State Encourages Communities to Apply for 30th Annual Governor’s Hometown Awards
Deadline for Entries is July 16
CHICAGO – The Illinois Department Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) is encouraging Illinois communities large and small to submit their entries for the 2012 Governor’s Hometown Awards (GHTA) competition. This year marks the 30th anniversary of the annual event which recognizes those volunteers whose hard work and dedication greatly improve their communities. The deadline to submit applications for consideration is Jul. 16, 2012. “The people in communities throughout the state are what make Illinois great,” Governor Quinn said. “These awards recognize people who are giving back to their communities and helping us build a stronger Illinois for future generations.”

April 16, 2012
State Fire Officials Introduce Autism Awareness Training For First Responders
Free Training Educates Fire and EMS Personnel to Better Understand Autism Spectrum Disorders
AURORA - The Office of the State Fire Marshal (OSFM), in partnership with the Illinois Fire Service Institute and Giant Steps, today announced a new training program for firefighters and emergency medical services (EMS) personnel to help better protect individuals with autism spectrum and related disorders. The new program, available online at no cost, helps first responders to recognize autism disorders during an emergency response and better understand techniques to communicate. The training also includes an award program, whereby Giant Steps shall provide acknowledgement to fire departments whose personnel obtain this training.

April 16, 2012
Simon invites citizens to attend rural listening posts
CARBONDALE – Rural leaders, citizens and employers are invited to attend rural listening posts in Gibson City, Freeport and Quincy in April and May, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon announced today.

April 16, 2012
Simon to release road map to streamlined school districts
Classrooms First could cut $1 billion in operation costs
SPRINGFIELD – The Classrooms First Commission is expected to release a set of draft recommendations Tuesday that would make it easier for school districts to consolidate and help them save up to $1 billion in operations costs by sharing services, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon said today.

April 13, 2012
Simon releases 2011 tax returns
Keeps promise to shed light on personal, staff financial interests
CARBONDALE – As tax season comes to a close, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon is fulfilling her promise to annually release her state and federal income tax returns, as well as financial statements from her senior staff members. The statements disclose more than what is required by law, and the commitment to open government allows taxpayers to learn if Simon or her staff have any conflicts of interest.

April 13, 2012
Governor Quinn Announces Three Illinois Schools Nominated for National “Green Ribbon” Award
Proclaims April “Earth Month” in Illinois at 4th Annual Go Green Schools Symposium
CHICAGO – April 13, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today announced that three Illinois public schools were nominated for a new U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools award program that recognizes exemplary achievement in environmental impact, student and staff health and the environmental literacy of graduates. The Governor made the announcement during the 2012 Go Green Schools Symposium, which encourages educators and students across Illinois to adopt sustainable practices in order to conserve our natural resources and protect the environment. Governor Quinn also issued a proclamation declaring April as “Earth Month” in Illinois.

April 13, 2012
Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs to honor Mundelein man as its April ‘Veteran of the Month
CHICAGO –The Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs (IDVA) later this month will honor Estan “Stan” Villarreal, Jr. a Mundelein resident and U.S. Marine Corps veteran, at its April 2012 “Veteran of the Month.” The program will begin at 10:30 a.m. (CDT) on Wednesday, April 18, 2012 at the Captain James A. Lovell FHCC, 3001 North Green Bay Road, Bldg. 135, Room 148, North Chicago, Ill. 60064.

April 12, 2012
Metro East Warehouse Surrenders Its Operating Licenses
Grain creditors of Handy Feed Handyscape are encouraged to attend an informational meeting April 18
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – A St. Clair County grain warehouse surrendered its operating licenses to the Illinois Department of Agriculture today. Handy Feed Handyscape, Inc., of Millstadt, Ill., has been closed since April 2, when department staff discovered assets of the financially-troubled company were insufficient to meet the requirements of the Illinois Grain Code and took control of the firm to protect the interests of its farmer customers. The surrendering of the licenses will enable the department to liquidate those assets and pay valid grain claims.

April 12, 2012
Simon: Restore funding to Charleston rape crisis center
Strip club fee common sense way to fund sexual assault prevention
CHARLESTON – In recognition of Sexual Assault Awareness Month, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon visited a local rape crisis center today and urged lawmakers to restore funding to the center through a $5 entrance fee at strip clubs with alcohol.

April 12, 2012
Governor Quinn Announces Capital Funding to Disinfect the Chicago River
State Grant to Upgrade Chicago River Treatment Plants
CHICAGO – April 12, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today announced $10 million in state funding to the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District (MWRD) of Greater Chicago to improve water quality in Chicago area waterways. The funding being provided through the Illinois Jobs Now! capital program will support design and engineering of new facilities to disinfect discharges into the Chicago River/Chicago Area Waterway System at two wastewater treatment plants. The work will result in healthier, cleaner water than ever before.

April 11, 2012
Honoring Illinois' Fallen
United States and Illinois flags at half-staff from Sunrise, Thursday, April 12, 2012 until Sunset, Saturday, April 14, 2012.
The Department of Central Management Services has received notice from Governor Quinn's Office that all persons or entities covered by the Illinois Flag Display Act are to fly the flags at half-staff from Sunrise, Thursday, April 12, 2012 until Sunset, Saturday, April 14, 2012.

April 11, 2012
Corn Farmers Vote To Increase Corn Marketing Act Check-Off
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Illinois corn farmers overwhelmingly have approved an increase in the check-off rate they pay when marketing their grain. By a vote of 1,137 to 317, they passed a referendum March 28 to raise the rate by 1/4 cent per bushel. The referendum result was announced today after the Illinois Department of Agriculture completed its review of the ballots and certified the statewide vote total.

April 11, 2012
Liquor Control Commission March Underage Compliance Report
SPRINGFIELD – In March the Illinois Liquor Control Commission (ILCC) conducted compliance checks around the state and visited 201 businesses licensed to sell liquor. They cited 29 licensees for violations of liquor control laws. Eighty-six percent of the licensees visited complied with Illinois liquor laws and refused to serve underage customers. This report is a result of ongoing undercover and cooperative law enforcement operations conducted by Illinois Liquor Control Commission (ILCC) agents and local law enforcement officials and volunteers from high schools and colleges. The teams randomly visit liquor stores, restaurants and bars in communities around the state to check for ongoing compliance with state laws mandating that no liquor is sold to minors under the age of 21. ILCC agents also work with local and state law enforcement agents to focus on communities with a high incidence of underage liquor sales.

April 11, 2012
Simon to bring rural listening tour to Eastern Illinois
Demand for skilled workers, education will top the agenda
MATTOON – As chair of the Governor’s Rural Affairs Council, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon will host a rural listening post in Eastern Illinois on Thursday evening to collect ideas on how to improve education and employment in non-metro areas of the state.

April 10, 2012
Governor Quinn Encourages Working Families to Apply for Tax Relief
Tax Preparation Assistance Program Helps Working Families File on Time
CHICAGO – April 10, 2012. One week away from the April 17 tax filing deadline, Governor Pat Quinn today urged working families to learn about tax relief available to them in Illinois and get the assistance they need to file their taxes. The governor continued his drive to get the word out about Illinois’ EITC at Harold Washington College, which serves as a tax assistance center organized by the Center for Economic Progress (CEP). CEP President and CEO David Marzahl joined the governor and representatives from Walmart, who also announced a major donation to CEP to provide free financial services to working families.

April 10, 2012
IDVA to host ‘Helping & Hiring Our Hometown Heroes’ veterans benefits fair April 27th in Urbana
SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs (IDVA) is hosting a free Helping & Hiring Our Hometown Heroes benefits fair for veterans on Friday, April 27, 2012 at the Illinois National Guard Armory, 600 E. University in Urbana, Ill. The fair will bring federal, state and local agencies and organizations together in one location. The event will be held from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. The program is free and open to veterans and their families. Veterans are encouraged to bring their DD214 and any other relevant documents to the event. IDVA will be conducting GI Bill presentations at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.

April 10, 2012
IEMA and American Lung Association Announce Student Winners in Video, Poster Contests
Contests promote awareness of radioactive gas linked to lung cancer
SPRINGFIELD – Students from across the state recently put their creative talents to work to help spread the message about the hazards of radon, a radioactive gas that is the second-leading cause of lung cancer in the U.S. More than 400 posters and nearly 100 one-minute YouTube videos were submitted to the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) and the American Lung Association in Illinois (ALA-IL) for consideration in the agencies’ annual contests. “Once again, these students amazed us with their creative and innovative ways to promote the message about radon hazards and the importance of testing your home,” said IEMA Director Jonathon Monken.

April 6, 2012
Governor Quinn Announces $1.4 Million Roadway Improvement Project for West Central Illinois
Project Will Pave Way for NTN-Bower Corporation Expansion; Create 80 New Jobs
MACOMB, IL – April 6, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today announced a $1.4 million roadway improvement project along Bower Road in the city of Macomb. The project supports economic growth in West Central Illinois by paving the way for NTN-Bower Corporation to expand its Macomb facility, creating 80 new jobs over the next two years.

April 6, 2012
Governor Pat Quinn Takes Clemency Action
CHICAGO – April 6, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today granted 52 and denied 136 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 5, 2012
Simon brings rural listening tour to Southern Illinois
Demand for skilled workers, education atop the agenda
CARBONDALE – As chair of the Governor’s Rural Affairs Council, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon continued a listening tour of rural Illinois in her hometown today and collected ideas on how to improve education and employment in non-metro areas of the state.

April 5, 2012
IDOT Suspends Non-Emergency Road Work for Easter Weekend to Improve Traffic Flow
Agency Details Lane Closures to Aid Motorists’ Travel Plans
SPRINGFIELD - With thousands of motorists expected to travel on state roadways over Easter weekend, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) announced today that road work will be suspended where possible for the weekend to reduce congestion and improve traffic flow. IDOT also provided advance notice of lane closures that will be in place for the holiday weekend to aid motorists’ travel plans and improve safety.

April 5, 2012
Motorists And Farmers Reminded To Share The Road This Spring
Planting is off to an early start thanks to record-high temperatures
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – The Illinois Department of Agriculture (IDOA) and the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) are reminding motorists to be alert for farm equipment. Because of unseasonably warm and dry weather, many farmers were able to finish their field preparations early this year and now are ready to get started planting. That means the farm traffic on rural roadways will increase drastically the next few weeks, much sooner than usual.

April 4, 2012
Governor Quinn Announces New Employment System to Help Connect Jobless with Businesses
Free Illinois JobLink service boasts nearly 92,000 statewide job postings; more than 51,000 resumes
CHICAGO – April 4, 2012. In his latest effort to boost the Illinois economy, Governor Pat Quinn today announced a new “help-wanted” system that connects job-seekers with jobs and makes hiring easier and more cost-effective for businesses. Illinois JobLink, developed by the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES), allows businesses to post job ads and individuals to post multiple resumes for free. Currently, there are nearly 92,000 total statewide job postings and more than 51,000 resumes posted on the system.

April 4, 2012
Department of Human Rights Marks Start of Fair Housing Month
Agency teams with Chicago Area Fair Housing Alliance To spotlight link between housing and economic opportunity
CHICAGO – The Illinois Department of Human Rights (IDHR) teamed up today with the Chicago Area Fair Housing Alliance to kick-off Fair Housing Month with a discussion about the timely topic of: Opportunity Mapping: because where you live matters. Today’s panel is one of a series of events that will be held around the state as part of Fair Housing Month, which commemorates the 44th anniversary of the passage of the 1968 Federal Fair Housing Act. This year also marks the 33rd anniversary of the Illinois Human Rights Act, which is administered by IDHR and bars discrimination in housing. In a proclamation declaring April as Fair Housing Month in Illinois, Governor Pat Quinn said: “The talents of grassroots and non-profit organizations, housing service providers, housing professionals, financial institutions, elected officials, state agencies and others must be combined to promote and preserve integration, fair housing and equal opportunity; and address the immense challenge of ensuring

April 3, 2012
Simon advocates for rape crisis funding in Moline
Touts strip club fee to save critical counseling services
MOLINE – Lt. Governor Sheila Simon recognized Sexual Assault Awareness Month today by visiting a rape crisis center in Moline where she advocated for a new funding stream to protect services for sexual assault survivors and save jobs.

April 3, 2012
Governor Quinn Announces Major Road Projects for Peoria Area During Transportation Conference
Illinois 8 and Illinois 29 Work to Create Jobs and Reduce Congestion
PEORIA – April 3, 2012. As part of his commitment to ensuring Illinois has a 21st century transportation system, Governor Pat Quinn today announced two major road projects in the Peoria area. The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) will complete the final phase of its widening of Illinois Route 8 in Washington this summer and begin finalizing plans for the replacement of the BNSF Railroad viaduct over Illinois Route 29 in Chillicothe. The two projects will create jobs, reduce congestion and improve the flow of goods and services throughout the greater Peoria area.

April 3, 2012
Governor Quinn Convenes First Meeting of Illinois Export Advisory Council
Group Will Develop Recommendations to Increase Trade Opportunities and Business Investment in Illinois
CHICAGO – April 3, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today convened the first meeting of the Illinois Export Advisory Council. As part of Governor Quinn’s commitment to strengthen the Illinois economy and create jobs, the group will work with the Governor’s office and recommend strategies to increase trade and business investment in Illinois. Governor Quinn announced the group as part of his growth strategy during his 2012 State of the State Address.

April 3, 2012
IDOT and Partners Announce 2011-2012 Operation Teen Safe Driving Winners
Illinois Teen Fatalities Down by Nearly Half Since 2007
SPRINGFIELD — The Illinois Department of Transportation, The Ford Motor Company Fund, The Allstate Foundation, Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White, and Illinois State Police (ISP) today announced the seven winning schools from the 2011-2012 Operation Teen Safe Driving (OTSD) program. The announcement comes as Illinois records declining teen fatality numbers in automobile crashes, demonstrating a 48 percent decrease in 2011 as compared to 2007, when the program first began. The program includes the support of Governor Pat Quinn, the Illinois State Board of Education and the national Governor’s Highway Safety Association. “Illinois is a national leader in teen safety,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Ann Schneider. “The innovation, dedication and collaborative efforts of IDOT and partners in successful programs like OTSD have significantly impacted and improved roadway safety across the state. The peer-led program creates student ownership and allows participants to analyze

April 3, 2012
IEMA Launches Pet Preparedness Radio Spots Featuring Legendary “Animal Stories”
“Uncle Lar and Lil’ Tommy” Return to Airwaves for Animal Preparedness Campaign
SPRINGFIELD – A new radio public awareness campaign set to hit the airwaves in Illinois will bring a humorous approach to the serious topic of pet emergency preparedness. Legendary radio personality Larry Lujack and his long-time radio associate Tommy Edwards, long known for their “Animal Stories” vignettes when working together on Chicago radio, have revived their roles as “Uncle Lar and Lil’ Tommy” in seven radio spots for the Illinois Emergency Management Agency’s (IEMA) statewide preparedness campaign. “These radio spots are really fun and will help us catch the listener’s ear with our message about pet preparedness,” said IEMA Director Jonathon Monken. “Pets are an integral part of many families and shouldn’t be forgotten when developing a complete family preparedness plan.”

April 3, 2012
IDNR Urges Caution to Prevent Wildfires
Unusually warm, dry spring weather could contribute to fire danger
SPRINGFIELD, IL – The Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) is reminding Illinoisans and visitors to the state to take precautions to prevent wildfires – especially with the unusually warm and dry weather in the state this spring. “Our IDNR staff and local fire agencies have already been busy this spring dealing with wildfires at state sites. We’re encouraging visitors to our state parks, state forests, other state sites and federal and local forest and park land – as well as private landowners – to be extra vigilant this spring in preventing fires because of the unseasonable weather that could contribute to even more fires in the coming weeks,” said IDNR Forest Protection Program Manager Tom Wilson.

April 2, 2012
2012 Illinois Travel Guide Now Available
Illinois Office of Tourism’s all-new free travel guide provides information on statewide destinations and attractions and much more
CHICAGO - The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, Office of Tourism (DCEO/IOT) today announced that the 2012 Illinois Travel Guide is now available to consumers. The all-new guide combines a newsstand magazine look and feel with the practical information visitors expect from a travel guide.

April 2, 2012
April is “Sticker Shock Month” in Illinois
Volunteers, businesses work together to remind adults that giving alcohol to minors is against the law
CHICAGO—For the fourth consecutive year, the State of Illinois is coordinating a statewide educational effort, entitled Sticker Shock Month, reminding adults that it is illegal to give alcohol to minors and for minors to use a fake ID. During the month of April – which is also national Alcohol Awareness Month – thousands of youth and adult volunteers will visit liquor establishments throughout the state. During their visits, volunteers will post Project Sticker Shock materials as a final reminder to customers that providing alcohol to minors is Illegal, Unhealthy, & Unacceptable.

April 2, 2012
Governor Quinn Announces Top Cabinet Appointments
La Mar Hasbrouck to Lead Department of Public Health; David Vaught to Head Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity; Jerry Stermer to Serve as Acting Director of Governor’s Budget Office
CHICAGO – Monday, April 2, 2012. Today Governor Pat Quinn announced the appointments of Dr. La Mar Hasbrouck as director of the Department of Public Health (IDPH), David Vaught as director of the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) and Jerry Stermer as acting director of the Governor’s Office of Management and Budget (GOMB). Today’s action is the latest in a series of appointments Governor Quinn is making as he continues to fulfill his commitment to creating jobs, economic development, and increasing efficiency and accountability in all areas of state government.

April 2, 2012
Governor Quinn Announces Up to $13 Million in New Relief for Southern Illinois Communities
Governor Secures State, Federal Resources to Help Southern Illinois Families, Businesses, and Local Governments Recover from Tornado
HARRISBURG – April 2, 2012. At the direction of Governor Pat Quinn, the heads of a number of state agencies today announced in Harrisburg up to $13 million of financial aid and construction projects to help families, businesses and local governments recover from the deadly tornado that ravaged several Southern Illinois communities on Feb. 29. The package put together at the Governor’s instruction includes reimbursements to local governments for some of their disaster-related expenses, road improvements, grants to help homeowners repair or rebuild damaged homes, and low-interest business loans to create jobs and help businesses recover.

April 2, 2012
Governor Quinn Honors Uniting America Volunteers in Memory of Cesar Chavez
Calls for All to Honor Hispanic Civil Rights Leader's Legacy Through Service
CHICAGO – April 2, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today joined leaders from the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (ICIRR) to commemorate the birth of America’s greatest Hispanic civil rights leader by honoring the volunteers of the Uniting America service initiative. Volunteers performed thousands of hours of community service since the program's launch last summer. Today Governor Quinn called for all residents to honor the legacy of Cesar Chavez by recommitting themselves to community service.

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