Budzinski Announces $1.3 Million for Two Macoupin County Projects 

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, Congresswoman Nikki Budzinski (IL-13) announced that two projects in Macoupin County will be receiving a combined $1,300,000 in federal funding. The funding was requested by Congresswoman Budzinski during the House of Representatives’ Community Project Funding process and signed into law this weekend in a bipartisan government funding bill. In total, Congresswoman Budzinski secured $136.1 million for projects throughout Illinois’ 13th Congressional District in the package.

“Last week, I was proud to join colleagues on both sides of the aisle to pass a government funding deal that will provide critical federal resources to projects in Macoupin County,” said Congresswoman Budzinski. “With more than $1.3 million headed to projects in Staunton and Carlinville, I’m excited to see progress made to improve infrastructure and services available to folks with developmental disabilities. In the coming months, I look forward to visiting the sites of these projects in the coming months and continuing my work to deliver results for the folks I serve in Central and Southern Illinois.”   

The government funding package signed into law over the weekend included six of 12 appropriations bills that need to be passed by March 22nd in order to fully fund the federal government. Budzinski helped to pass the package in the House of Representatives last week. 

The following projects championed by Congresswoman Budzinski will be receiving direct federal investments from the bipartisan government funding bill:

$800,000 for Staunton’s Force Main Project

The funding will be used to replace the City of Staunton’s only sanitary sewerage pump station. The sanitary sewer force main infrastructure is over 40 years old and has experienced severe wear and poses a risk to citizens.

“I would like to thank Congresswoman Nikki Budzinski and her team for all their hard work for supporting this project and securing the grant. Without this grant it could be a possible catastrophe for the city of Staunton. Thank you so much,” said Staunton Mayor Craig Neuhaus.

$500,000 for the Macoupin Center for the Developmentally Disabled

The funding will be used by the Macoupin Center for the Developmentally Disabled to relocate their current facility to a more accessible and safe location that will allow the Center to provide more education and employment services and opportunities for residents who have developmental disabilities.

“The Macoupin Center for the Developmentally Disabled is extremely grateful for all the hard work and time that Congresswoman Nikki Budzinski and her staff, including Brian Zilm and John Lee, have put forth on this project. We appreciate this opportunity and look forward to working towards the goal of growing MCDD to serve more adults with developmental disabilities living in Macoupin County,” said MCDD Development Director Kimberly Wing.

In addition to the projects listed above, the legislation also included a bipartisan $120 million Community Project Funding request from U.S. Representatives Nikki Budzinski (D-IL-13), Eric Sorensen (D-IL-17), Darin LaHood (R-IL-16), Sam Graves (R-MO-06) and Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-MO-03) to upgrade locks and dams along the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers. Upgrading locks and dams will reduce traffic delays along waterways and increase shipping capacity by constructing new 1,200-foot locks — improving safety, efficiency and getting agricultural goods to the global market more quickly.

$120,000,000 for the Navigation and Ecosystem Sustainability Project (NESP) on the Upper Mississippi and Illinois Rivers

The funding will be used by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for several Mississippi River improvement efforts, including navigation improvements and aquatic ecosystem restoration, ensuring the economic and environmental sustainability of the waterway.

“IL Corn and the farmers we represent are elated to see $120,000,000 allocated for Upper Mississippi River Basin waterways projects. Modernizing this infrastructure will make a significant difference for Illinois farmers competitiveness in a global marketplace and will invest in our downstate Illinois communities. This is important work for our state, and we are very grateful for Congresswoman Budzinski’s request to include this funding in the final appropriations bill,” said Dave Rylander, ICGA President and farmer from Victoria, IL.

“We’re very thankful to Rep. Budzinski for her leadership by achieving this funding. NESP will improve both the nation’s inland waterway supply chain and the environmental health of the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers,” said Tracy Zea, President/CEO of Waterways Council, Inc.

“The Illinois Soybean Growers commend the further funding of the NESP program in the FY24 Energy and Water appropriations package. The continued support by Rep. Budzinski and members of the Illinois delegation highlight the importance of the NESP program to maintain a reliable and cost-effective transportation system for Illinois exports. The program also strikes an important note balancing the need to maintain navigation and protect ecosystems along the Illinois waterway. We look forward to continued advancement of the NESP program and progress toward the construction of new 1200-foot lock chambers on the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers,” said Director of Government Relations & Strategy for the Illinois Soybean Association Andrew Larson. 

The legislation signed by President Biden also included a number of funding priorities Congresswoman Budzinski championed during the House of Representatives’ appropriations process:

Increased funding for veterans: The bipartisan government funding bill ensures that veterans receive the compensation and benefits that they have earned with increased investments in health care, including targeted investments that support caregivers and advance mental health care, homelessness assistance and improved access to care. By identifying and advocating for local veterans’ needs during the appropriations process, Congresswoman Budzinski helped to secure the following resources: 

  • Full funding for the Toxic Exposures Fund (Honoring Our PACT Act) for fiscal year 2024 and fiscal year 2025.
  • An additional $2.3 billion for veterans’ mental health care.
  • An additional $556 million for veterans’ caregivers in line with the Elizabeth Dole Home Care Act. Congresswoman Budzinski has cosponsored the legislation and voted for it to pass the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs and the full House of Representatives. 
  • An additional $418 million for veteran homelessness prevention programs in line with the Healthy Foundations for Homeless Veterans Act and the Return Home to Housing Act which Congresswoman Budzinski has cosponsored. 
  • An additional $60.6 million in funding requested by Congresswoman Budzinski for veterans’ suicide prevention outreach initiatives. 
  • An additional $17 million in funding requested by Congresswoman Budzinski for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs’ Medical and Prosthetic Research Program. 
  • An additional $5 million for rural health care in line with the Driver Reimbursement Increase for Veteran Equity (DRIVE) Act which Congresswoman Budzinski has cosponsored. 

Increased funding for infrastructure, housing and rural development: The bipartisan government funding bill makes strong investments in programs that fund water system improvements, housing access, law enforcement and energy upgrades that greatly benefit communities in Illinois’ 13th Congressional District. By identifying and advocating for local infrastructure, housing and rural development needs during the appropriations process, Congresswoman Budzinski helped to secure the following resources:

Increased funding for nutrition programs: The bipartisan government funding bill includes additional resources for nutrition programs that help to feed hungry families in Central and Southern Illinois and across the country. By identifying and advocating for the needs of local families during the appropriations process, Congresswoman Budzinski helped to secure the following resources:

  • An additional $1.3 billion for the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program that served 6.6 million women, infants and children in fiscal year 2023. This increase in funding is in line with a request made by Congresswoman Budzinski and her colleagues for additional support. 
  • Full funding for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) which served more than 42 million people in 2023. Budzinski has advocated extensively for the program on the House Committee on Agriculture and through her Farm Bill 101 initiative
  • An additional $4.7 billion in funding for school meals for all K-12 students through the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and the School Breakfast Program (SBP) within the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS). Budzinski advocated for additional school meal funding during the 2023 appropriations process.

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