- Published: Friday, April 17, 2015 01:32 PM
EDWARDSVILLE– Recent cuts by Gov. Bruce Rauner to Illinois’ community service funding has forced one Macoupin County organization to cancel its summer food program for children in poverty, and proposed cuts could have even bigger ripple effects throughout the region.
Representatives from Wilsonville’s Illinois Coalition for Community Services explained how these cuts will impact their ability to serve the community and result in the elimination of vital programs in Macoupin County to a Senate budget committee Friday. They were invited by state Senator Andy Manar.
“Governor Rauner’s suspension of grant funding for social service agencies has produced immediate, devastating consequences for Illinois’ most vulnerable youth and families. The governor’s decision has forced ICCS to suspend programs in over 90 counties that were helping communities preserve self-sustainability, empowerment and dignity.” Mike Crews ICCS Communication Director said.
During a Senate committee held at SIUE, Wilsonville residents described how proposed cuts to state outreach funding will prevent them from offering necessary community services and eliminate existing programs.
“The governor’s cuts are heartbreaking for our community. The cuts are already presenting a crippling roadblock in our ability to provide needed education and feeding programs for our children.” Wilsonville resident Jodi Reeves said.
“Organizations like ICCS have an immeasurable, positive impact on our communities. I’ve seen the value of the program in Wilsonville firsthand. By eliminating this funding, the governor is creating a void that can’t be filled and that has an enormous impact on the neediest in our communities,” State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) said.
Manar said he will work to restore the fund during the final weeks of the spring legislative session.
In Macoupin County, ICCS serves close to 1,000 residents through community outreach programs such as a mobile health clinic and a summer meal program for children in poverty. These programs and many others would be eliminated if the proposed cuts go through.