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Will County Veterans Commission to get expanded dental program, transportation for disabled vets under budget supported by Bertino-Tarrant

jbt 041118 2PLAINFIELD – Veterans Assistance Commission of Will County will soon receive $130,000, thanks to State Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant.

Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood) helped fight for this crucial community organization to receive additional funding for dental services and a vehicle furnished with a lift to increase mobility for disabled veterans in need of transportation services.

“I believe it’s fitting to prioritize the veterans who took care of us,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “The Veterans Assistance Commission of Will County is providing our community with exceptional service. This funding will help them expand services and take even better care of our servicemen and servicewomen.”

The Veterans Assistance Commission of Will County’s mission strives to protect, promote and provide services to Veterans as honorably and selflessly as possible.

“Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant is a huge supporter of veteran’s in Will County,” Kristi McNichol, Superintendent of Will County Veterans Assistance Commission said. “Each year she hosts a veterans’ appreciation breakfast, so we were not surprised when she thought of continuing to support our veterans with capital improvement funds. We have been in need of a van with a wheelchair lift and her phone call was the answer to many of our senior and disabled veterans’ prayers.”  

According to Barry Kolanowski, Executive Director SR Service Center of Will CO, the senior population in Will County will exceed 100,000 in 2020 and this funding will help the organization meet the senior veterans’ transportation needs as well as the county’s disabled veteran population.

“Dental care in general is important for preventative maintenance for overall healthcare” McNichol said. “One of the missions of the VAC is to prevent a crisis, from healthcare to housing. We are extremely grateful for the Senator taking the veterans of Will County’s needs into consideration when requesting additional funding from Springfield.”

Bertino-Tarrant acts to preserve five-hour school days in Illinois

05072019CM0083RSPLAINFIELD –Illinois’ five-hour classroom time will now ensure students receive a balanced education, thanks to the Senate’s Education Chair Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant.

Bertino-Tarrant’s measure, Senate Bill 28, reinstates a minimum of 5 hours of instruction per day in schools, allowing exemptions for students enrolled in dual career, supervised career development experiences and youth apprenticeships.

This section was repealed in the Evidence Based Funding for Student Success Act trailer bill, leaving each school district to determine what counts as an instructional day. The fix was signed into law on Friday

“Utilizing technology in our curriculum helps our children learn better,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “In the 21st century, we need to continue to look for ways to incorporate innovative teaching methods to guarantee our children are prepared to compete in the modern world. However, there needs to be clear and concise guidelines in place to ensure students are receiving the best possible educational opportunities.”

Schools that have received approval from Illinois State Board of Education may still utilize e-learning days to satisfy school day requirements.

Bertino-Tarrant is committed to working with ISBE, educators and advocates to create a streamlined process that will allow school districts to utilize e-learning, especially in cases when schools are forced to cancel days in the classroom.

“E-learning is a valuable tool,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “We just need to make sure there are clear standards in place to prevent abuse of the program.”

Senate Bill 28 passed the Senate and House with bipartisan support. The measure go into effect on July 1, 2019.

Bertino-Tarrant fights workplace discrimination

Sen. Bertino-TarrantPLAINFIELD – Women across Illinois will soon have remedies to fight sexual harassment and discrimination in work places, thanks to a measure supported by State Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant.

Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood) championed Senate Bill 75, which clarifies the ethics investigation process, including making the process more transparent and giving additional rights to victims of harassment and discrimination who file ethics complaints.

“This monumental legislation is helping shift the culture in the work place,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “Stopping sexual harassment and ending discrimination helps provide a safe work environment for everyone.”

Crucial I-80 bridge repairs included in statewide construction plan

jbt mcguire 060319Capital construction plan passes with support from McGuire, Bertino-Tarrant

SPRINGFIELD — Included in a statewide construction plan that addresses hospitals, schools and roadways will be funding dedicated to repairs ensuring the long-term safety of the I-80 bridge spanning the Des Plaines River. The plan passed with support from State Senators Pat McGuire and Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant.

“We took two giant steps toward safety on I-80 by devoting millions in state funding for needed repairs and by clearing the way for the privately funded Houbolt Road Bridge,” McGuire said.

“Local residents cannot continue to tolerate poor roads and bridges,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “It is imperative that the state invest in the I-80 bridge to ensure safety, economic growth and eliminate traffic.”

State inspectors signaled an urgent need to repair the bridge, which conveys traffic across the Des Plaines River in the Joliet area. The bridge scored a 6 out of 100 in an IDOT sufficiency assessment – anything below an 80 is considered deficient.

The bridge work is part of a $45 billion plan that will address roadway and building needs all over the state of Illinois, including at public universities, hospitals, and other travel infrastructure.

The construction plan passed the General Assembly today, and awaits the governor’s signature to be enacted.

Sen. Bertino-Tarrant

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49th Senate District

Years served: 2013 - Present

Committee assignments: Commerce and Economic Development; Education (Chairperson); Insurance; Labor; Licensed Activities (Vice-Chairperson); Transportation; Subcommittee on Capital (TR); Subcommittee on Special Issues (ED) (Sub-Chairperson).

Biography: Lifelong educator; former Will County superintendent and secretary of Will County Regional Board of School Trustees; B.A., Illinois State University; MS, University of St. Francis; EdD., Loyola.

Associated Representatives:
Mark Batinick
Natalie A. Manley