04112018CM1428SPRINGFIELD – Illinois lawmakers voted to pass a balanced budget out of the Senate with bipartisan support today.

The budget, which was worked on by lawmakers from both parties, includes $350 million in new k-12 funding, a 2% increase in funding for higher education and nearly $600 million in cuts and savings

State Senator James F. Clayborne Jr. (D-Belleville) says this budget is an example of what can happen when lawmakers put the future of the state over their political affiliation.

“This budget was not dictated from the top down,” Clayborne said. “It is a culmination of rank-and-file lawmakers from every corner of the state sitting down and doing what’s best for their community and the entire state.”

The budget now goes to the Illinois House of Representatives for approval.

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“From the boardroom to the mailroom, companies that show they are committed to diversity deserve to be rewarded for doing so,” - State Sneator James F. Clayborne, Jr. (D-Belleville)

SPRINGFIELD – State Senator James F. Clayborne Jr. (D-Belleville) passed legislation today that will improve diversity within the Illinois procurement process.

Under Senate Bill 2365, companies that demonstrate a commitment to diversity will be given higher scores on the scoring rubric for state contracts.

“From the boardroom to the mailroom, companies that show they are committed to diversity deserve to be rewarded for doing so,” Clayborne said.

Senator Clayborne introduced SB 2365 to address many long-standing concerns about the state’s Business Enterprise Program, which requires at least 20 percent of state contracts to be awarded to companies owned by minorities, women, veterans or persons with disabilities.

“The simple fact is the state has not even come close to meeting its goals when it comes to minority contracting and the Business Enterprise Program,” Clayborne said. “This legislation will guarantee that we do more to include every community in the state in our procurement process.”

Additionally, Chief Procurement Officers of state agencies will be required to train their employees annually on diversity and inclusion. The legislation also sets a goal for all state agencies issuing requests for proposals to provide at least 20 percent of contracts to minority bidders.

The legislation now goes to the House of Representatives.

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