05282021CM0766 rSPRINGFIELD – Families of students with disabilities will be more fully informed of the resources available to them thanks to a measure by State Senator Dave Koehler (D-Peoria) that passed out of the Senate State Government Committee on Wednesday.

“Students with disabilities face seemingly insurmountable challenges every day,” Koehler said. “For many of these students and their families, the COVID-19 pandemic has only added to their worries; and helping families access much-needed assistance should be a priority.”

Senate Bill 3474 requires school districts to provide informational materials about the Achieving a Better Life Experience account program directly to the parent or guardian of students with disabilities.

The ABLE program aims to assist individuals and families in saving private funds for the purpose of supporting individuals with disabilities to maintain health, independence and quality of life. It also provides secure funding for disability-related expenses on behalf of people with disabilities to supplement insurance benefits and income.

“By ensuring that Illinoisans with disabilities and their families know about the ABLE account program, we can create solutions instead of exacerbating problems,” Koehler said.

The legislation will now go before the full Senate for further consideration.

Category: Press Releases

Koehler BudgetAddressQuote 1PEORIA – State Senator Dave Koehler (D-Peoria) issued the following statement after the governor’s Fiscal Year 2023 budget proposal Wednesday afternoon:

“During this time of unprecedented challenges, the proposed budget gives a well-deserved and much-needed helping hand to Illinoisans hardest hit by the pandemic.

“This budget addresses the needs of some of the most vulnerable individuals across our state through additional resources for the Department of Children and Family Services, increased funding for public health preparedness, and expanded home care and food delivery programs for older Illinoisans.

“This is the time for the government to step up and do what is right by the people we represent. By putting the people of our state at the forefront of our growth and progress, we ensure that we are able to move forward together, and I look forward to continuing to strive for that goal.”

Category: Press Releases

51548434047 34e222d2a6 bThe Illinois Department of Public Health is partnering with the Rockefeller Foundation to offer free COVID-19 tests to households in identified priority zip codes across the state. Eligibility is based on zip codes with the highest risk of COVID-19, using the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Social Vulnerability Index combined with state data on COVID-19 burden.

The website is live now, and constituents living in eligible zip codes can go to www.AccessCovidTests.org to order a free test kit. Eligible zip codes in the 46th District include 61602, 61603, 61605, 61606, and 61611.

  • Each household will receive 1 kit with five tests within one to two weeks after ordering
  • No payment information is required — both the tests and shipping are free to eligible residents
  • The program is currently limited to one order per residential address

More information about the program is available here.

Category: Press Releases

05312021CM0642 rPEORIA – More than 40 small businesses across the district State Senator Dave Koehler (D-Peoria) represents were awarded over $1.1 million in million in Back to Business grant funding, thanks to legislative measures supported by Koehler and other members of the General Assembly.

“Our small businesses have faced unprecedented challenges as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Koehler said. “They incurred losses and stared down uncertain futures, but never stopped serving our community.”

The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity selects grantees, and the grants are funded through the American Rescue Plan. The DCEO has dispersed $111 million in B2B grants to nearly 3,000 small businesses across Illinois who have been disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Grants ranging from $5,000 to $250,000 were awarded to 44 small businesses in the 46th district. The funding will help the businesses recoup losses from the past two years and continue to keep their doors open to the community.

“Keeping our small businesses alive and well is critical to our communities and our local economy,” Koehler said. “This funding will help our businesses keep their doors open and become even stronger than before.”

Grants will continue to be awarded statewide on a rolling basis. More information about the B2B program, as well as a full list of grantees, is available on the DCEO’s website.

Category: Press Releases

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