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Koehler: Local schools to get nearly $2 million for digital upgrades

E-learningPEORIA – School districts in the 46th Illinois Senate District are set to receive nearly $2 million in government funding to improve students’ access to digital technology, including more than $700,000 for Peoria School District 150.

“E-learning is playing such an important role as we overcome the COVID-19 pandemic,” said State Senator Dave Koehler (D-Peoria). “I know our local school districts will use these funds to help ensure every student has access to the technology they need to continue their education during this difficult time.”

Koehler reminds local business owners to apply for next round of Business Interruption Grants

koehler 012820PEORIA – To curb the devastating economic effects brought on by COVID-19, State Senator Dave Koehler (D-Peoria) is encouraging small business owners to apply for the second round of Business Interruption Grants.

“With the first round of Business Interruption Grants, several local businesses received financial relief and were able to keep their doors open,” Koehler said. “With so many businesses still struggling to maintain operations, it’s doubly important that the state continues to step up to help however possible.”

Applications for the second round of the Business Interruption Grants (BIG) program will be made available this Thursday afternoon and will offer $220 million in funds for small businesses hit hardest by the ongoing pandemic.

The second wave of funds from BIG aims to provide relief for all types of small businesses, with a focus on businesses located downstate or in disproportionately impacted areas. Application information for the second round of funds and can be found on DCEO’s website at Illinois.gov/dceo.

Koehler announces mentoring grant for Peoria Public Library

peoria library 081120PEORIA – The Peoria Public Library and is the recipient of a $12,500 mentoring grant from the Illinois secretary of state’s office, State Senator Dave Koehler (D-Peoria) announced Tuesday.

The grant was awarded through the Project Next Generation program, which is a mentoring program administered through Illinois public libraries. Mentors work with middle and high school students to help them develop skills needed to use technology and find success through project-based learning. Mentors also help with developing life skills, such as effective communication, goal setting and conflict resolution.

The Peoria Public Library is one of 28 public libraries in the state to receive the grant.

“I’m thrilled to see that Secretary White is demonstrating a commitment to the wellbeing of public libraries in our state,” Koehler (D-Peoria) said. “Well funded libraries are an invaluable resource for our communities. This grant will help provide students in Peoria with the tools they need to be successful in the future.”

In all, the secretary of state awarded $559,358.00 in Project Next Generation grants statewide. The money is provided by the Institute of Museum and Library Services. Grants are awarded to public libraries that serve low-income and underserved populations.

Koehler remembers civil rights leader Rev. C.T. Vivian

rev vivian 071720PEORIA – State Senator Dave Koehler issued the following statement Friday after news of the death of Peoria civil rights icon C.T. Vivian:

“Rev. C.T. Vivian was a pioneer of the Civil Rights Movement and gave pride to all Peorians because of his Peoria roots. I met him years ago when he spoke in Peoria and came away in awe of his dedication and insight on where we need to be headed as a nation. I thank God for the life of this dedicated man. We need to continue his memory to help inspire future generations.”

C.T. Vivian was a civil rights activist whom Martin Luther King Jr. once described as “the greatest preacher to ever live.” Vivian’s career began in Peoria, where he was hired to work for the Carver Community Center. While at Carver Community Center, Vivian participated in his first civil rights sit-in, where he successfully integrated Barton’s Cafeteria.

Sen. David Koehler


Assistant Majority Leader
46th District

Years served:
Appointed December 2006; Elected 2008 - Present

Committee assignments: Agriculture; Education; Environment and Conservation (Vice-Chairperson); Labor; Local Government; Transportation; Subcommittee on Capital (TR); Oversight Medicaid Mang. Care, Spec; Supplier Diversity, Special Com. On; Sub. on Interscholastic Athletics (Sub-Chairperson).

Biography: Born and raised in South Dakota, moved to Peoria in 1978; B.A., Yankton College, 1971; M.A. in divinity, United Theological Seminary, 1974; staff member, National Farm Worker Ministry; community organizer and program manager, Peoria Friendship House; executive director, Peoria Area Labor Management Council; president, Labor Management Cooperative Health Programs Inc.; Peoria County Board member, 1982-88; Peoria City Council member, 1989-97 (mayor pro tem, 1993-94); first elected to Senate in 2006; married with three daughters, a son-in-law and two granddaughters.

Associated Representatives:
Jehan Gordon-Booth
Michael D. Unes