Illini UnionCHAMPAIGN – State Senator Scott Bennett (D-Champaign) is condemning Governor Bruce Rauner’s baseless remarks against Champaign-Urbana.

During a radio interview in Chicago last Friday, Rauner criticized Champaign-Urbana’s workers and transportation systems.

“Champaign-Urbana is wonderful,” Rauner told WGN AM-720. “But it’s very hard to keep a company of more than six people there. There’s no convenient transportation, not much of a workforce, and it’s very hard.”

Bennett is surprised and disappointed in Governor Rauner’s claims against the workforce.

“I have personally been on a tour of the University of Illinois Research Park with Governor Rauner where we learned that the Research Park has 2,000 employees in high-tech fields and more than 100 companies in just one area of Champaign-Urbana. Then he talks about how ‘it’s hard to keep a company of more than six people there.’ That’s just outright dishonest, frankly. He knows what we have here.”

Recent reports also show that Champaign is one of the fastest growing cities in the state and is outperforming neighboring cities in employment and wage growth, according to data compiled by the state of Illinois.

“I think Champaign-Urbana offers the ideal setting for a public-private partnership,” Bennett said. “We have some of the best minds in the country here on the faculty at University of Illinois and we have some of the top students in the country and the world, so companies like Caterpillar, Anheuser-Busch or brand new start-ups can come here and find employees like our students who are just starting their careers and can bring their brain power and fresh new ideas.”

Bennett also said that the governor’s comments are harmful to the effort to attract more jobs into downstate communities and in Illinois.

“It’s so frustrating,” Bennett said. “As we try to attract jobs to Champaign-Urbana, to Danville, or to Rantoul from out of state, a simple Google search will tell you that our governor continues to be not our biggest cheerleader, which we need him to be, but instead he’s our biggest naysayer.”

DANVILLE – To provide assistance and listen to concerns on local and state issues, State Senator Scott Bennett (D-Champaign) is hosting an Open House at his new district office in Danville.

Free and open to the public, the event is from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. on Friday, June 22 at the former federal courthouse on 201 N. Vermilion Street, Danville.

bennett OH

05022018CM0563SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Scott Bennett (D-Champaign) issued the following statement on today’s budget vote in the Illinois Senate:

“As a legislative body, it is our responsibility to enable our youth to have a bright future in this state and to provide for the most vulnerable in our society. Today’s budget vote shows that the Illinois Senate is able to work across party lines to achieve much-needed compromise.

“The balanced budget agreement that the Senate passed sets responsible funding levels that allow us to reprioritize spending to tackle some our state’s most critical issues. In this budget, we commit to allowing social service providers to keep their doors open, increasing funding for public universities and community colleges, maintaining MAP grant funding and even creating a new tuition grant program for Illinois students.

“It’s a plan that will provide fiscal stability and certainty for families, businesses, social service providers and schools and universities in Champaign and Vermilion County.

“I’ve always believed that our state gets stronger when we empower working families, care for the most vulnerable and provide opportunities through education. I am proud to have voted for these investments today in order to move our state forward.”

The budget package now moves to the House for consideration.

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Office Info

Champaign Office:
45 E. University Suite 206
Champaign, IL 61820
P: (217) 355-5252

Danville Office:
201 N. Vermilion St. Suite 323
Danville, IL 61832
P: (217) 442-5252

Springfield Office:
218-B State House
Springfield, IL 62706
P: (217) 782-2507