Senate Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford SPRINGFIELD – The Fiscal Year 2024 budget was signed into law today with plans to prioritize education and expand the workforce. In response, Senate Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford (D-Maywood) released the following statement:

“I am proud to support a balanced budget that invests in students, families and communities across Illinois. The Fiscal Year 2024 state budget invests in the future of Illinois, providing record funding for early childhood education, higher education and trade schools.”

“I am pleased to see investments prioritizing early learning for all Illinoisans by removing systemic barriers that disproportionally impact underserved populations by expanding programs, and improving the early education workforce to support retention efforts and promote job growth.”

“Thousands of marginalized, first-generation students will have the opportunity to continue their education through grants for college costs outlined in this budget plan. Further, the budget includes valuable investments in workforce training programs for teens and young adults after high school.”

“My commitment to providing quality and affordable education opportunities from birth to college for families in Illinois is backed by this budget. I am proud to support a budget that is responsible, compassionate, and provides our youth with greater opportunities for success. With this budget plan, we are promoting diversity in a skilled workforce prepared to meet the needs of our communities and ready to be frontrunners in the industries of the future.”

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MAYWOOD - After the official decision by the United States Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade, Senate Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford (D-Maywood) released the following statement:

“Today’s Supreme Court decision is dehumanizing. It viciously attacks women and all people who can bear children, and it puts every single person’s right to privacy at risk.

“In Illinois, we made sure this dreadful day would not destroy the right to an abortion because we believe that people should be trusted to make their own health care choices.

“While abortions have historically been a polarizing issue, we must not lose sight of the intentions of this conservative-controlled Supreme Court. This doesn’t stop here, and that’s why it’s critical that we come together to protect our civil rights. We won’t allow this court to walk all over the rights so many have fought for, and destroy the lives of many in the process.”

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Lightford061820CHICAGO — Senate Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford (D-Maywood) joined Governor JB Pritzker and other members of the Black, Latino and Asian Caucuses of the state legislature and small business owners to announce a package of state grant programs to support communities and businesses impacted by the pandemic and recent civil unrest.

“Black communities are the hardest hit by COVID-19. Another symptom of the disease that is racism in our country; working families who have yet to receive a proper payday have struggled, they've struggled to maintain. During this time, our small business built in our local communities by the people who care about them. Most were forced to shut down, and were damaged by individuals who totally exploited our pain for personal gain,” Lightford said. "They need a government that will work for them without hesitation. And when we left Springfield after passing a balanced budget, this is the word that we fought for; for Black and Latino communities who deserve nothing less than reassurance that we are going to make them whole. And then we are going to make them grow. “

The package includes more than $900 million across more than ten programs and four state agencies to help working families and small businesses who have been hit the hardest by COVID-19’s economic impacts, which was compounded by recent property damage and civil unrest.

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SPRINGFIELD – In response to the governor’s budget address, Assistant Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford (D – Maywood) released the following statement focusing on the need for an equitable education funding formula.

“Funding our schools without reforming our unfair education system does more harm than good. No matter how much wealth you have, throwing money at a problem is not going to solve it without understanding the real issues at hand. Our decades-old funding formula has not done anything to meet the needs of today’s students. It has only led to the most regressive funding system in the nation.

“We cannot wait any longer to give Illinois children the education they need to compete in this ever-changing world, and given his words today, I reserve hope that the governor is beginning to understand this. But, resources are scarce in many schools, disproportionately affecting minority students in Chicago and across the state. Schools are choosing between keeping students warm and paying for up-to-date textbooks. We need fundamental changes now that will address these issues in real ways.

“No one is talking about a budget that takes away from one student and gives to another. We are talking about lifting up a struggling student in a struggling school and providing her at least the same chance as anyone else to achieve her dreams.”

lightford ilbc budget response

Senator Lightford, Illinois Legislative Black Caucus Chair, speaks outside of the House chambers on behalf of the ILBC in response to the governor's budget address

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Senate Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford

Born May 10, 1968, in Chicago; B.A., public communications & human relations, Western Illinois University; Master's in public administration, University of Illinois at Springfield. Village of Maywood Trustee 1997-2003; State Government Employee - IL Secretary of State, IL Department of Corrections, IL Central Management Services. Resides in Maywood with her family.


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