011724KP5331SPRINGFIELD – Illinois and the nation are in the midst of a local journalism crisis, with news outlets closing or shrinking at an alarming rate. State Senator Steve Stadelman and the members of the Local Journalism Task Force spent the last year studying the decline of local journalism, and outlined its findings and policy recommendations at a news conference Wednesday.

“As local journalism declines so does the checks and balances on democracy. It’s an issue facing newsrooms across both the state and nation – due in large part to dwindling revenue that leads to a dwindling number of reporters,” said Stadelman (D-Rockford). “A disruption in finances is a disruption in talent. It was long past time for us to have serious conversations about the future of journalism and how that affects the future of our communities.”

Stadelman – a former TV news anchor – chaired the Local Journalism Task Force. Representatives from media, academia and government met nearly a dozen times throughout the previous calendar year to study the decline of local media, its impact on democracy, and potential policy changes that could increase revenue to newsrooms across the state.

Hearing from a number of experts from across both the state and nation, the task force saw a common theme: independent local news reporting is vital and the lack of it is dangerous to the health of our democracy.

According to the Medill research, the Chicago area is among the 20 U.S. metro areas with the highest loss of news sources per capita. Yet the decline in rural parts of the state is even worse.

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Category: Press Releases

Stadelman3Roserance will add 40 beds for residential substance abuse treatement for adults in part as a result of $250,000 in state funds being delivered for the project by State Senator Steve Stadelman.

The Stadelman-obtained contribution represents a third of the $750,000 project cost and takes Rosecrance to 80 percent of its fundraising goal, Rosecrance President and CEO Dave Gomel announced at a news conference this week where he expressed the nonprofit's "gratitude to the State of Illinois, with special recognition to Senator Stadelman, for their continued support."

Rosecrance is convering space previously used for treatment of teenagers at its Griffin Williamson on University Drive in Rockford to 40 residential beds for adults. Gomel explained that more teens are being treated through outpatient programs, while more adults who lacked adequate early intervention need residential treatment.

"As a society, we're beginning to understand the full cost of untreated mental health and substance-abuse disorders -- the emotional and economic impacts on families and communities," Stadelman said. "Just look at our county jails and the number of inmates who are dealing with mental health issues and substance-abuse disorders. This is why I was so committed to helping Rosecrance meet changing needs."

Category: Press Releases

Hicks Park CroppedROCKFORD - State Senator Steve Stadelman today applauded the announcement of $2.8 million in state funding for improvements at Clarence Hicks Memorial Sports Park as a smart investment in an economically disadvantaged neighborhood and positive youth development.

The grant from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources follows $600,000 previously secured by Stadelman toward a $7 million upgrade in the outdoor athletics facility on Rockford's southwest side. When upgrades are complete, Hicks Park will feature an artificial turf playing field and stadium with eight-lane running track and bleacher seating for 1,000 spectators, among other amenities.

"With this investment of state resources, an under-utilized facility will become a major regional attraction," Stadelman said. "To flourish as a community, we must rescue impoverished neighborhoods -- and this project not only provides valuable physical assets but also a place for expanded sports programming that will strengthen the minds and bodies of girls and boys who are key to a prosperous future."

The 77-acre park at 2004 Ogilby Road is currently home to athletic programs including NFL flag football, NFL cheer, FIRE track and field, Wolves youth football and Chicago Bears Outreach Camp. Last year, the Bears donated artificial turf from the Walter Payton Center at Halas Hall to create a future warmup area as part of the $7 million upgrade.

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Category: Press Releases

library 2607146 1280ROCKFORD – State Senator Steve Stadelman announced three school districts in the Rockford area have received more than $30,000 to provide resources to libraries through books, e-books, audiobooks, periodicals, multilingual materials, technology and programs.

“Making sure our libraries are equipped with the resources necessary and pertinent to students is fundamental to the educational value they provide to our communities,” said Stadelman (D-Rockford). “I look forward to how these funds will be used in our area and the resources our libraries will be able to procure with this funding.”

Based on a statutory formula, school districts receive $0.885 per student enrolled at each school with a qualified library. Funding for the School District Library Grant Program originates from the General Reserve Fund and is appropriated for this purpose by the Illinois General Assembly.

The following school districts in Stadelman’s district received a total of $33,723:

  • Rockford Public School District 205 - $22,147
  • Belvidere School District 100 - $6,428
  • Harlem CUSD 122 - $5,147

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Category: Press Releases

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Contact Info

Springfield Office:
Senator 34th District
121B Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-8022
 
District Office:
200 S. Wyman St., Suite 301
Rockford, IL 61101
(815) 987-7557