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Castro: governor’s executive order provides ‘a fresh start’ for veterans’ care

Published: Friday, January 18, 2019 03:25 PM

castro 080818SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Cristina Castro (D-Elgin) commended Gov. JB Pritzker’s decision today to make a commitment to addressing a lingering health care crisis at the state’s veterans’ homes.

“The Legionnaires’ outbreak was a public health crisis, but the previous administration’s behind the scenes scheming, secrecy and lack of communication with the very families affected made it even worse,” Castro said. “This executive order gives us a fresh start and an opportunity to renew our commitment to providing quality care for veterans. We owe it to them and their families to ensure type of health crisis never occurs again.”

Pritzker issued an executive order today instructing the Department of Veterans’ Affairs to provide a report in the next 120 days examining the strengths and weaknesses of Illinois’ veterans’ homes and determine what efforts can be made to ensure that the brave men and women who served our country receive proper care.

The order further directs veterans’ homes to develop procedures for communicating with families to ensure that they are no longer left in the dark about the care their loved ones are receiving.

Senator Castro was named chair of the Veterans Affairs Committee this week and plans to continue working with the new administration to protect veterans.

“I look forward to collaborating with Gov. Pritzker on this issue and others facing Illinois veterans,” she said. “We need to work together to provide our country’s heroes with the treatment they deserve when their service has concluded.”

Castro hits reset button on Illinois Tollway

Published: Wednesday, January 09, 2019 10:45 AM

castro 010919SPRINGFIELD – Senator Cristina Castro (D-Elgin) voted Wednesday to hit the reset button on the Illinois Toll Highway Authority Board and give the next governor the chance to increase transparency and ethics. 

“The hiring and spending at the tollway has been disturbing. It was time to fumigate the board and start over,” Castro said.

Multiple investigations done by the Daily Herald found that there was likely unethical behavior going on within the Illinois Toll Highway Authority involving political favoritism regarding its hiring practices and contracts.

Castro responds to new legislative inspector general appointment

Published: Tuesday, December 18, 2018 03:10 PM

castro 041118ELGIN – State Senator Cristina Castro (D-Elgin) released the following statement regarding the unanimous decision by the Legislative Ethics Commission to appoint Carol Pope as the legislative inspector general:

“I am confident that Judge Pope will fulfill her duties and meet our expectations as the legislative inspector general. She will bring her experience and knowledge to our commission and help us move forward and become stronger.”

Castro’s new law provides youth with the tools to succeed

Published: Tuesday, December 18, 2018 11:43 AM

castro 031518ELGIN – A new state law that goes into effect Jan. 1, 2019, will give children in foster care and under supervision of the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) the opportunity to go to college, thanks to Elgin Democrat State Senator Cristina Castro.

“Kids in foster care are less likely to attend college,” said Castro. “This affects their futures, including their income levels and employment stability. I don’t want there to be barriers for these kids who are in situations that they had no control over.”

The law will allow certain youth from DCFS, who file for FAFSA and do not receive a DCFS fee waiver, to have the opportunity to receive a scholarship. The scholarship will cover the remaining tuition and fees for any public institution of higher learning in Illinois.

“This law will give kids from DCFS the tools to be successful,” said Castro. “They will then go out and contribute to our economy and make the job market stronger in our state. Their talents and dreams shouldn’t be limited.”

House Bill 5122 passed the Senate and House with bipartisan support.

Sen. Cristina Castro

Senator Cristina Castro

22nd Senate District

Years served: 2017 - Present

Committee assignments: Appropriations I; Commerce and Economic Development; Committee of the Whole; Energy and Public Utilities; Labor; Revenue (Vice-Chairperson); Transportation; Veterans Affairs (Chairperson).

Associated Representative(s):
Anna Moeller
Fred Crespo