PEORIA – State Senator Dave Koehler is encouraging all eligible people to apply to this year’s Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program to help with utility costs. Applications will be accepted starting Oct. 2 through Aug. 15, 2024.

“As utility costs continue to rise, it’s important for people to be aware of the cost saving resources the state has to offer,” said Koehler (D-Peoria). “People need to be able to heat their homes as we approach winter. I encourage families to take advantage of this program that will cut down their energy bills.”

Energy bill assistance offered through the Help Illinois Families Program in program year 2023 will provide $237 million to eligible families to assist with natural gas, propane and electricity bills. Last year's LIHEAP funding — which was available from September 2022 through May 2023 — provided assistance to a record number of 311,214 households.

Beginning Oct. 2, eligible families can apply to this year’s program by visiting or by visiting their local agency (a list of partners throughout the state can be found here). Families can also call 1-833-711-0374 for assistance in 30 languages.

All families who meet the qualifications and provide proper documentation will receive support until funding is exhausted. Families who earn up to two times the federal poverty level are eligible to receive support through LIHEAP.

Category: Press Releases

PEORIA – To improve statewide pediatric emergency and disaster readiness capabilities, State Senator Dave Koehler announced a $249,000 grant was awarded to OSF HealthCare Children’s Hospital of Illinois in Peoria. Senator Koehler

“Investing in our health care system is important for patients’ outcomes, whether it be for children’s routine care or pediatric emergency care,” said Koehler (D-Peoria). “Peoria’s location plays a vital role in Central Illinois with rural and urban communities. I look forward to expanding the resources and care OSF Children’s Hospital has to offer.”

Administered through the Illinois Department of Public Health, OSF Children’s Hospital received a $249,000 grant to conduct assessments of disaster plans at more than 30 Illinois hospitals, focusing on the inclusion of pediatric components to those plans. The hospital will develop resources and educational materials as well as share best practices that can be used to address identified gaps and disparities in that care.

OSF Saint Francis Medical Center is designated as a Level I Adult and Pediatric Trauma Center, serving as the Regional Hospital Coordinating Center in Central Illinois and providing specialized pediatric services. The grant will support coordinating the School Nurse Emergency Care course, a unique training program in Illinois designed to enhance the assessment, triaging and treatment skills of school nurses when confronted with various medical emergencies in the school setting. Grant funding will also support building upon and enhancing other pediatric initiatives that are currently in place within the state, such as developing educational webinars to assist hospitals in assessing the medical needs of infants and children.

“Children have unique medical and emotional needs compared to adults,” said IDPH Director Dr. Sameer Vohra, a pediatrician. “IDPH is thrilled to partner with OSF Healthcare Children’s Hospital of Illinois to maintain and improve our already high degree of statewide pediatric emergency and disaster readiness capabilities. This grant will advance various initiatives intended to build and secure brighter futures for Illinois’ children.”

Visit OSF HealthCare’s website for more information on the pediatric readiness program.

Category: Press Releases

PEORIA – Building upon the smart infrastructure investments that are possible due to strong support from State Senator Dave Koehler, multiple projects in the Peoria area are complete, planned or underway. Senator Koehler

“We continue to see the much-needed improvements the historic Rebuild Illinois program delivers, promoting economic development and creating jobs right here in our neighborhoods,” said Koehler (D-Peoria). “Our commitment to invest in everyday infrastructure continues to better the lives of residents across the state. Peoria drivers deserve safe, reliable roads and that’s what they will see with these strong investments.”

The Rebuild Illinois program invests over $33 billion over six years into the state’s aging transportation system. Eight major projects in the Peoria area received over $270 million, improving safety and mobility while sustaining and creating good-paying jobs throughout the region. Of the eight major projects, six are scheduled to be completed this year, with the remaining two in the fall of 2024.

“The historic investment of Rebuild Illinois will not only revitalize transportation infrastructure throughout our region, but will directly impact community members in Peoria with significant bridge improvements to the Bob Michel and McClugage bridges,” said Peoria Mayor Rita Ali. “More than 37,000 vehicles cross these bridges daily and now, with improved infrastructure for pedestrians and bicycles, more people will be able to enjoy these improvements.”

Visit the Illinois Department of Transportation’s website for more information on Rebuild Illinois.

Category: Press Releases

PEORIA – With strong support from State Senator Dave Koehler, a total of $670,000 was awarded to 17 businesses in the Peoria and Bloomington areas in an effort to uplift and support the restaurant industry. open 208368 1920

“Small businesses are the backbone of our communities,” said Koehler (D-Peoria). “Throughout the pandemic, restaurants struggled to keep their doors open. We made a commitment to invest and uplift the small businesses that provide essential jobs and boost our local economies.”

The Back to Business grant program provides recovery grants for small businesses throughout the state, with an emphasis on businesses in the hardest hit industries. Through the Back to Business and Business Interruption Grant programs, the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity has provided over $535 million to more than 15,000 businesses since the start of the pandemic.

Seventeen area restaurants across the 46th District will receive a combined total of $670,000 through this round of Back to Business grants.

“We have seen the strong impact the Back to Business grants have had on small businesses,” said Koehler. “I will continue supporting ongoing recovery efforts for our local restaurants, bars and taverns that play a vital role in our communities.”

A full list of awardees can be found here.

Category: Press Releases

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