001jones2“I recognize that financially money is extremely tight. We must prioritize.” – Sen. Emil Jones III

SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Emil Jones III (D–Chicago) had strong opinions regarding Gov. Pat Quinn’s annual budget address Wednesday.

“I recognize that financially money is extremely tight,” Jones said. “We must prioritize.”

Jones said that among his top priorities for this year’s fiscal plan were education funding, violence prevention and public safety dollars, and human services and health care funding.

“Right now, dollars for education is a big issue, given that 13 schools in the 14th Senate District are now being targeted for potential closing,” Jones said. “About 10 percent of the 129 CPS schools facing threats of closure lie within the boundaries of my district. Education funding right now is critical.”

Jones was disheartened to see, in light of his advocacy for greater education funding, the nearly $400 million in K-12 education cuts in the governor’s budget proposal. “This is disappointing, and I hope going forward we can rectify this because I remain adamant funding for our kids and their education needs to increase,” Jones said.

“We also have to provide for public safety and violence prevention,” Jones said. “It is no secret the 14th District is one of the biggest victims of the gun violence epidemic. We need to address safety in our streets with our final budget plan.”

“Health care is another great concern,” Jones said. “An estimated $1.6 billion in health care funding was slashed with last year’s budget, and that’s simply unacceptable. As someone fighting for increasing health care benefits, I maintain that we need to invest our money in the well-being of our citizens."

The Illinois Senate is now charged with approving and passing a budget plan for Fiscal Year 2014.

Category: News Releases

0001jones2“It’s an honor to be named chairperson. I am truly humbled and eager to work with my fellow African Americans to advance causes in the best interest of all state citizens, not just minorities.” – Sen. Emil Jones III

SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Emil Jones III (D–Chicago) was elected chairperson of the Illinois Senate’s Black Caucus yesterday.

“It is an honor to be named chairperson,” Jones said. “I am truly humbled and eager to work with my fellow African Americans to advance causes in the best interest of all state citizens, not just minorities.”

Sen. Emil Jones III is the son of one of the most recognized African American lawmakers in Illinois Senate history, former Senate President Emil Jones Jr.

“I am sincerely grateful for the privilege to serve as chairperson,” Jones said. “I look forward to sharing and cooperating with my fellow black legislators and the great things we are going to accomplish together this year.”

Jones has been a member of the Black Caucus since joining the Illinois Senate in 2009 and has previously served as Black Caucus Secretary. This is his first time being elected chairperson.

Category: News Releases

JonesFloorShot1“We need this legislation to let poverty-stricken adults, whether they have children or not, receive Medicaid benefits. Opening up access to the Affordable Care Act and closing these coverage gaps is the right thing, and it’s time to do the right thing.” – Sen. Emil Jones III

SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Emil Jones III (D–Chicago) proudly supported a measure today that could expand health care to an additional 342,000 Illinoisans.

The Senate approved legislation allowing the state to take advantage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to provide Medicaid to low-income adult state citizens.

Sen. Jones, a co-sponsor of the measure said its passage will provide Medicaid benefits to citizens previously denied them.

“We need this legislation to let poverty-stricken adults, whether they have children or not, receive Medicaid benefits,” said Sen. Jones. “Opening up access to the Affordable Care Act and closing these coverage gaps is the right thing, and it’s time to do the right thing.”

The expansion would begin in 2014 and is targeted to cover the lapse of low-income adults ages 19 to 64 currently unable to receive Medicaid.

“Health care and insurance are both key issues I am passionate about” Jones stated. “Making sure we don’t have any lapses in health care coverage and its funding is critical, and is something we must accomplish.”

SB 26 now moves to the Illinois House for further consideration.

Category: News Releases
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