ChildLibrary350SPRINGFIELD – Public libraries in Bartonville and Peoria are the recipients of mentoring grants from the Illinois secretary of state, State Senator Dave Koehler announced.

Recipients and grant amounts include:

  • Alpha Park Public Library District in Bartonville — $21,935
  • Peoria Public Library — $12,500

The grants were awarded through the 2019 Project Next Generation program, which is a mentoring program administered through Illinois public libraries. Mentors work with middle and high school students to help them develop skills needed to use technology and find success through project-based learning. Mentors also help with developing life skills, such as effective communication, goal setting and conflict resolution.

Peoria and Alpha Park are two of 31 public libraries in the state to receive the grants.

“There is never a down side to investing in mentoring and engaging at-risk youth to find their potential,” Koehler (D-Peoria) said. “I appreciate that the secretary of state understands the value of public libraries and continues to provide support for them and the work they do.”

In all, the secretary of state awarded more than $526,000 in Project Next Generation grants statewide. The money is provided by the Institute of Museum and Library Services. Grants are awarded to public libraries that serve culturally diverse, low-income and underserved populations.

“I am committed to improving the lives of at-risk youth in Illinois,” said Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White. “I established this innovative program when I first became secretary of state to give students an opportunity to receive hands-on experience with the latest technological tools at their local library.”

For more information, visit http://bit.ly/PNGgrants.

Category: Press Releases

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Category: Press Releases

SPRINGFIELD – Legislation protecting students with asthma by allowing their schools to keep backup inhalers on hand was signed into law today.

The measure, Senate bill 3015, allows school nurses or other personnel to administer asthma medication that is registered in the name of a school district, public school, charter school or nonpublic school to a person in respiratory distress. Similar laws already apply to life-saving EpiPens, which are applied to combat severe allergic reactions.

State Senator Dave Koehler (D-Peoria) said the legislation will help build on the progress the state has made thus far in combating asthma.

“We have to do more to help kids suffering with asthma in school,” Koehler said “This legislation will help so many young kids focus more on school and less on their next inevitable asthma attack.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Illinois Department of Public Health, approximately 8.4 percent of children in the United States and 13.6 percent of children in Illinois currently have asthma. Asthma is one of the leading causes of school absenteeism with an estimated 13.8 million school days missed due to asthma in the United States in 2014 alone.

Category: Press Releases

PEORIA – A bill that ends a long-running practice of Illinois governors hiding many of their staff members’ salaries in other department’s budgets became law this week.

Nearly 60 percent of employees currently working for the governor’s office are paid through the payrolls of state agencies with funds intended for priorities such as economic development, public safety and child protection, rather than directly through the budget of the governor’s office.

State Senator Dave Koehler (D-Peoria) supported The Truth in Hiring Act in order to end the practice of “offshoring” governor staff salaries.

The new law mandates that every employee who works in the governor’s office will be paid from the governor’s payroll. In doing so, it will prohibit governors from adding to staff without an honest accounting of the office’s budget.

“The people of Illinois have a right to know how much money is being spent on the governor’s office, who the employees are and what they are hired to do,” Koehler said. “It’s past time to end deceptive accounting practices and start committing to sound, fair and open business practices in our state.”

House Bill 5121 goes into effect immediately.

Category: Press Releases

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Contact Info

Springfield Office:
M113 Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-8250

Peoria Office:
400 NE Jefferson, Suite 200
Peoria, IL 61603
(309) 677-0120