27581128517 3116465a93 bSPRINGFIELD – Legislation sponsored by State Senator Christopher Belt (D-Centreville) that will make it easier for the state to ensure its buildings are energy efficient was signed into law today.

The measure will allow the Capitol Development Board to require new state buildings, and any renovations or additions to existing state buildings, to be able to support solar panels, even if they are not installed at the time of construction.  

“The state should find every way possible to save money and protect the environment,” Belt said. “Allowing state buildings to be energy efficient will do just that.”   

This legislation brings the state in line with federal policy by closing a loophole that prohibits the board from requiring new buildings to be solar-ready.

House Bill 2652 takes effect immediately.

Category: Press Releases

SMRLD Full Logo 150 ppi 5 2014 1GRANITE CITY – The Six Mile Regional Library District is the recipient of a $9,854 mentoring grant from the Illinois secretary of state, State Senator Christopher Belt (D-Centreville) announced.

The grant was awarded through the FY20 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.

Six Mile Regional Library District is one of 29 public libraries in the state to receive the grant.

“At risk students in Granite City will have the opportunity to access new educational platforms because of this grant,” Belt said. “This will develop their skill set, increase their self-confidence in the classroom and most importantly provide passage towards success in their future careers.” 

In all, the secretary of state awarded more than $464,000 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 culturally diverse, low-income and underserved populations.

“I am committed to improving the lives of at-risk youth in Illinois,” said Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White. “I established this innovative program when I first became secretary of state to give students an opportunity to receive hands-on experience with the latest technological tools at their local library.”

For more information, visit https://ilsendems.co/2GtOQzP.

Category: Press Releases

05302019CM0593

SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Christopher Belt’s a measure that would create a statewide program to promote public awareness and early detection of Parkinson's disease was signed into law.

“We want people to take care of their health,” Belt (D-Cahokia) said. “That’s why we are trying to inform everyone what Parkinson’s disease is and encourage people to manage their health more carefully.”

House Bill 3247 would also allow the Illinois Department of Public Health to accept for the program any special grants of money, services or property from the federal government or any of its agencies or any foundation, organization or medical school.

An estimated 1.5 million Americans have been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. An additional 50,000 are diagnosed annually, and another 1.5 million people have the disease but have never seen a neurologist.

“I’m hoping that this will nudge people to see the doctor regularly,” Belt said. “Even if you are healthy, health protection and prevention is the key to staying that way.”

House Bill 3247 takes effect on Jan. 1, 2020.

Category: Press Releases

capital

SPRINGFIELD – Billions of dollars in funding will be released for construction projects across the state under a bipartisan package of bills approved by the General Assembly and signed into law today by Gov. JB Pritzker.

“Infrastructure is the backbone of economic growth and expansion,” Belt said. “If we want our state to grow and prosper, we must make continued investments in our roads, bridges, schools and health care networks.”

The construction plan is Illinois’ first in a decade. Since the last statewide construction plan in 2009, the condition of the state’s roads, bridges and public buildings has degraded, causing AAA to give Illinois’s infrastructure a grade of D.

The plan also includes a combined $850,000 for the cities of East St. Louis, Centreville and Alorton for crumbling sidewalks, streets with large potholes and outdated sewer lines.

“This will be an economic stimulus for these cities and give local leaders a chance to invest in their communities,” Belt said. “Overall, this capital bill provides the necessary tools to improve our infrastructure and put us on track to where we need to be.” 

In addition, the East Side Health District, which has been providing health services to the region for 73 years and has filled a vital gap in health services in East St. Louis, will receive $1 million to expand clinic services and invest in urban farming in the neighborhoods.

Category: Press Releases

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