052520210407MARYVILLE – A longtime advocate for making mental health resources more available and affordable, State Senator Rachelle Aud Crowe (D-Glen Carbon) applauded recent expansions of Illinois’ Medicaid program.

“As our communities recover from pandemic-related hardships, the availability of quality mental health and addiction services is more critical than ever,” Crowe said. “This Medicaid expansion gives veterans and residents more reliable access to enhanced care that fits their unique health needs.”

The omnibus legislation makes several updates to the Illinois Medicaid system, including providing additional support for veterans in need of specialized care and creating a new requirement to allow in-patient status to be granted for anyone experiencing an overdose induced by opioids.

“Mental health is equally as important as physical health,” Crowe said. “With additional resources for veterans and residents suffering from mental strain and addiction, our state is giving communities the tools to support vulnerable populations in times of crisis.”

Senate Bill 2294 was signed into law Tuesday and took effect immediately.

Category: Press Releases

icf logo handMARYVILLE – Felicity Guttmann, a recent graduate of Edwardsville High School, was one of just five students statewide selected by the Illinois Conservation Foundation to receive the Conservation Achievement Scholarship, State Senator Rachelle Aud Crowe (D-Glen Carbon) announced Tuesday.

Guttmann was chosen for the scholarship because of her work to reduce pollution in farming.

“It’s encouraging to see our state recognize students who make an effort to preserve and protect our natural resources,” Crowe said. “The Metro East community is fortunate to have Felicity promoting sustainable practices in the agriculture industry and representing local environmental interests.”

Last year, Guttmann began raising chickens and found a creative way to reduce waste: she composted chicken manure to use as fertilizer in her garden beds.

Guttmann is also passionate about keeping her neighborhood clean and always carries a bag on walks to pick up trash along the way.

According to ICF, awardees must be Illinois high school seniors who demonstrate efforts to enhance and promote Illinois' natural resources. All five scholarship recipients will receive $2,000 to use for college expenses.

Guttman plans to study crop and soil science while pursuing a degree in agronomy at the University of Missouri in Columbia.

“Caring for the environment should be inherent in us,” Crowe said. “I applaud the scholarship recipients for taking an active role in promoting sustainable practices, as well as all other young people working to care for our planet.”

More information on the scholarship program and a list of other recipients can be found on ICF’s website.

Category: Press Releases

Illinois Back On Track 2 FBMARYVILLE - Moody’s Investor Services has upgraded Illinois’ General Obligation Bonds for the first time in more than 20 years, and State Senator Christopher Belt (D-Swansea) and State Senator Rachelle Aud Crowe (D-Glen Carbon) are praising the General Assembly’s work to get the state to this point.

“This is another example that shows our state is working diligently to restore what has been broken in the past,” Belt said. ”I want to thank our state’s leaders and my colleagues as we have set Illinois on the path to a brighter future.”
 
Moody’s Investors Services, one of the primary credit rating agencies, recently upgraded Illinois’ General Obligation Bonds a step closer to the top rating.
 
The upgrade shows a stable outlook for Illinois’ economy, meaning state borrowing will cost less, which will in turn save taxpayers money. The analysis highlighted the Fiscal Year 2022 budget for the upgrade.
 
Moody’s stated the increased pension contribution, repayment of emergency Federal Reserve borrowings, and constrained use of federal aid from the American Rescue Plan Act are to thank for the increased rating.
 
“A win for Illinois taxpayers, Moody’s upgrade signals our state is making responsible budgetary decisions,” Crowe said. “By enacting balanced budgets and prioritizing fiscal stability over recent years, Illinois is on a path toward financial recovery.”
 
This is the second positive rating action for Illinois in a week, following an outlook improvement from Fitch.
Category: Press Releases

FIREFIGHTERSMARYVILLE - State Senators Christopher Belt (D-Swansea) and Rachelle Aud Crowe (D-Glen Carbon) are urging local fire departments impacted by the pandemic to apply for relief grants.

“The brave men and women on the first line of defense risk their lives every day and continued to do so during the pandemic,” Belt said. “I’m pleased to see funds being spent on our firefighters who protect our communities.”

A total of $1 million will be available to assist approximately 80 impacted fire departments that operate in diverse communities throughout the state. Under this one-time grant opportunity, eligible Illinois fire departments could receive up to $15,000 in order to make up for lost donation revenues stemming from their inability to host local fundraising events during 2020. These fundraising events pay for necessities like fuel for fire trucks, utilities and insurance.

“This funding supports our first responders who lay their lives on the line every day to keep us safe,” Crowe said. “The smaller fire departments rely on funding for essential materials and these grants will benefit those that were impacted by the pandemic.”

The Office of the State Fire Marshal will collaborate with the Illinois Fire Chiefs Association to create a special committee to review the grant applications utilizing a blind review needs-based analysis.  The OSFM will facilitate and directly oversee the distribution of the grant awards to the recipients. This grant is financed through the Illinois Fire Prevention Fund.

All grant applications must be received by Aug. 13. Grant recipients are expected to receive awards by October.

To learn more about eligibility requirement and apply, people can visit the Office of the State Fire Marshal’s website.

Category: Press Releases

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