Sen. Tom CullertonSPRINGFIELD- To promote government transparency and accountability, State Senator Tom Cullerton (D-Villa Park) championed the passage of the Illinois Debt Transparency Act.

Cullerton joined the Illinois Senate in voting to override Governor Rauner’s veto of House Bill 3649, which requires state agencies to provide a more accurate accounting of bills and late payment interest penalties accruing.

“Illinois taxpayers deserve to know how their money is spent,” Cullerton said. “This measure encourages responsible budgeting and the honest use of taxpayer dollars. I’m glad the Illinois Senate worked together in a bipartisan manner to take the necessary steps to promote a fiscally-sound budget. ”

Currently, state law requires that on October 1 agencies report the annual aggregate amount of pending unpaid bills that were being held as of June 30. The comptroller’s office then publishes the outdated information on their website.

This new law will now require state agencies to report the amount of unpaid bills, whether that amount was appropriated or not and an estimate of interest penalties accumulated on a monthly basis.

“This new law will promote help promote fiscal responsibility,” Cullerton said. “Good government begins with accountability and transparency. State officials and agencies have an obligation to be transparent and open with the way we spend valuable state dollars.”

Cullerton believes real-time accounting will help the state’s financial officers as well the General Assembly have a realistic outlook on state finances when making budgetary decisions.

infographic 2016 fpw.800x1035VILLA PARK- State Senator Tom Cullerton (D-Villa Park) reminds area residents to adjust their clocks on Sunday, November 5 for daylight saving time and to take the time to check and change batteries in their smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors.

“Daylight Saving Time is the perfect opportunity for area residents to test safety devices to reduce home fire fatalities,” Cullerton said. “I urge area residents while turning your clocks back to take a second to check and change the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Testing these valuable safety tools is an effective way to keep your family safe.”

The National Fire Protection Association reports that half of home fire deaths happen between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m. when most people are asleep. Three out of five home fire deaths result from fires in properties without working smoke alarms.

Cullerton urges residents to check the manufacture dates on your smoke alarms. Age matters when it comes to smoke alarms. They should be replaced every ten years.

Residents should test alarms once a month by pushing the test button. If it does not sound when tested that means the alarm may need to be replaced.

“A working fire alarm may be the difference between life and death in the case of a fire,” Cullerton said. “Every second counts when you need to evacuate your home.”

Here are some resources for residents to reference for home safety tips:

Smoke Alarm Information

Carbon Monoxide Safety Tips

Illinois Fire Safety Alliance

Cullerton urges area residents to reach out to his Villa Park Office at (630) 903-6662 for more information.

05312017CM0529RSWOOD DALE- State Senator Tom Cullerton (D-Villa Park) is excited to announce students in Wood Dale Public Library District will soon have additional technological resources available to enhance their studies.

The Wood Dale Public Library District was awarded a $15,000 grant through the Secretary of State’s Project Next Generation program (PNG).

“Our children live in a digital world,” Cullerton said. “This grant will support Wood Dale Library’s mission to expand and upgrade learning opportunities for our students.”

PNG is an educational technology initiative of Illinois Secretary of State and State Librarian Jesse White that was established to help educate at-risk students and bridge the digital divide.

Cullerton hopes this will empower students to succeed academically and train to become the future leaders of Illinois.

The grant will help enhance technology training for local students by proving additional funding to pay start-up costs for after-school training programs and supplemental staff to educate and mentor children.

The Hechinger Report states 70 percent of teachers across the nation assign homework to be completed online, but more than five million families with school-aged children don’t have internet connectively at their home.

“This new grant opportunity will expand access and assistance for children to guarantee they have a predictable and productive environment to complete their studies,” Cullerton said. “This year, the General Assembly passed bipartisan school funding to ensure Illinois’ students have the proper resources to succeed at school; now let’s make sure they have the means to learn outside of the classroom.”

The Wood Dale Library District was formed in March of 1956 by local citizens. The library is open seven days a week. For more information area residents can visit www.wooddalelibrary.org or call (630) 766-6762.

06292017CM0261RSSPRINGFIELD- Illinois may soon have new protections in place to protect college students from crippling student loan debt, thanks to Villa Park Democrat Tom Cullerton.

Cullerton joined the Illinois Senate in voting to override Governor Rauner’s veto of Senate Bill 1351, which creates the Student Loan Bill of Rights and prohibits predatory loan servicers from engaging in any unfair or deceptive practices towards students or parents.

“College debt has become unbearable,” Cullerton said. “For many, the American dream includes obtaining a college education. I’m proud to work with my colleagues to ensure our children are given an opportunity to succeed and graduate from college without crippling amounts of student debt.”

The Student Loan Bill of Rights would ensure students and their families receive clear information about funds they borrow for higher education and how their student loans are serviced.

The legislation also aims to crack down on the student loan servicing industry that has made it increasingly more difficult and expensive for students and parents to repay educational loans.

In addition, Cullerton has been fighting to lower college education costs by championing legislation to cut bloated administrative severance packages and perks.

“Students should not be paying for hefty handouts to failed college administrators,” Cullerton said. “State funding and tuition dollars should be going toward educating our students and training them to be future leaders in Illinois and across our great nation.”

Most recently, Cullerton worked with the Illinois Legislative Audit Commission to investigate misuse and abuse at state community colleges and universities. Next spring, he plans to introduce new legislation to increase public transparency and input on severance packages and salaries for higher education administrators.

“Cutting administrative costs will lower tuition cost and fees,” Cullerton said. “This is a common sense approach that will give all of Illinois’ children an opportunity to achieve the American dream.”

Senate Bill 1351 passed the Senate and moves to the House for consideration.

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CONTACT SENATOR CULLERTON

Welcome to the official website of Senator Tom Cullerton. Please fill out our contact form to contact Senator Cullerton directly or you may call either of our offices. We look forward to hearing from you.

District Office
338 S. Ardmore Ave.
Villa Park, IL 60181
P: (630) 903-6662
F: (630) 903-6643

Springfield Office
122 Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
P: (217) 782-9463