- Published: Tuesday, May 05, 2015 02:03 PM
SPRINGFIELD—A Macoupin County community service organization will now be able to rehire staff and restart its annual summer food program for impoverished children, thanks to restored state funding.
“ICCS’s summer meal program will again be possible in Wilsonville because of Senator Manar’s tireless effort of advocating for our most vulnerable youth. Thank you, Senator Manar,” Jody Reeves said
Last month’s cuts by Gov. Bruce Rauner to Illinois’ community service funding forced Wilsonville’s Illinois Coalition for Community Services to lay off workers and cancel its summer food program, which serves thousands of low-income children in the region. The restored funding allows the organization to fully fund the program and rehire staff.
Last summer, ICCS served 5,146 meals in the 48th district including 882 meals in Wilsonville.
“Governor Rauner believed funding Wilsonville ICCS wasn’t essential when he made these cuts. But when the people effected made their voices heard and the long-term costs of losing these services were seen, it became abundantly clear that this level of community service is absolutely essential,” State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) said.
After receiving letters from the governor detailing the loss of their funding, Manar invited representatives from ICCS to testify before a Senate budget committee held at SIUE. They described the harsh realities that would hurt the town and the entire region because of the loss of funding.
“We deeply appreciate Senator Manar’s commitment to ICCS, Wilsonville and his entire district. ICCS looks forward to continuing our youth and family programming in the 48th Senate District, and across the state, as we continue advocating with the senator for inclusion in the FY16 budget,” ICCS Acting Executive Director Jason Gyure said.
“Even though funding for this year was restored, we still have an uphill battle for next year’s budget. However, ICCS has demonstrated its unparalleled value to our community, and now the entire state knows how essential it is,” Manar said.
In Macoupin County, ICCS serves close to 1,000 residents through community outreach programs such as a mobile health clinic and the summer meal program.