Working for Illinois Caucus

House Downstate Democrats work for the good people of Illinois



Bristow Honored By St. Louis Chamber | Alton Daily News

BristowState Representative Monica Bristow (D-Alton) has been honored by the St. Louis Chamber of Commerce.

Her work in legislature fighting for local businesses and economic development in the region has earned her the Chamber Champion Award and the Catalyst Award.

Bristow tells the Big Z her body of work in general is what is being applauded by the Chamber.

click play for Bristow’s comments

Bristow was honored at the annual Chamber Champions Awards dinner along with other state, national, and local elected officials from Illinois and Missouri. Monica Bristow was formerly the president of the Riverbend Growth Association.

(Copyright WBGZ Radio /

010-Inoreader Saves,01-All No Sub,02-Pol,13-GBI,24-ILGA,25-Working,26-Delivered

via Alton Daily News

February 5, 2020 at 06:50AM

All ESL students approved for free bus rides to school

Some 1,800 students in the East St. Louis School District will receive free bus rides to school beginning with the 2020-2021 school year thanks to state legislation passed at the instigation of district parents.

Illinois House Bill 5195, adopted in late 2018, allows qualifying schools to provide free bus transportation to students who reside in an area with high incidence of criminal gang activity. Previously, free school transportation was only provided to students who live more than 1.5 miles from school or for those who live less than 1.5 miles but who walked through hazardous areas as identified by the Illinois Department of Transportation.

Data from the Illinois State Police, as well as the City of East St. Louis, City of Washington Park, City of Centreville and the Village of Alorton, were used as evidence for determining eligibility in the application to the Illinois State Board of Education.  

The East St. Louis School District was the first school district in Illinois to apply and receive a waiver for all of its students and the first to receive a transportation waiver from the Illinois State Board of Education. According to the school district, its transportation provider, Illinois Central, is in the process of adding new fleet and recruiting additional drivers to meet the increased service demand. 

The bill was championed by Rep. LaToya Greenwood, Rep. Jay Hoffman and Sen. James Clayborne Jr. to ensure approval in the House and Senate. East St. Louis School District Superintendent Arthur Culver noted that the district and concerned partners have been working for several years to get free transportation for students who reside in areas with high incidences of criminal gang activity.

“Our parents are the ones who raised this issue and worked tirelessly to advocate for free bus transportation for all students,” Culver stated in a release. “Their advocacy has led to this win for our students. We also want to thank our Board of Education and the Financial Oversight Panel for their support and steadfast concern for the safety of our students.”

The district also thanked local municipalities and police departments for their assistance with compiling the data reports needed for the waiver application.

“The chances of being murdered in East St. Louis are 19 times greater than the national average,” the Belleville News-Democrat reported last April. “The national homicide rate is around 5 murders for 100,000 people; in East St. Louis, it’s 96 murders per 100,000, topping cities like Chicago, St. Louis, Detroit and Washington, D.C. Yet only 25 percent of the murders are charged in criminal court, compared to a national average of 60 percent.”

The News-Democrat noted that there were 453 murders within the 14-square-mile border of East St. Louis from 2000 to 2018.

010-Inoreader Saves,13-GBI,14-Roads,02-Pol,19-Legal,24-ILGA,25-Working,26-Delivered,AllSN

via St. Louis American

February 5, 2020 at 06:48AM

Bristow receives two awards for work on economy and jobs

In recognition of her strong legislative record and efforts to fight for local businesses and economic development, state Rep. Monica Bristow (D-Alton) received both the Chamber Champion Award and the Catalyst Award from the St. Louis Chamber of Commerce.

“I am working to build a stronger Illinois, and that means building a stronger state and local economy where businesses, employers, and employees are all able to succeed,” Bristow said. “I am humbled to be honored by my longtime friends at the St. Louis Regional Chamber for my work for our regional economy that we share together in the Metro East.”

At the annual Chamber Champions Awards dinner, the St. Louis Regional Chamber of Commerce honored Bristow and other state, national, and local elected leaders from Illinois and Missouri for their work to help businesses and improve the regional economy. Bristow was named a Chamber Champion, and was one of two Illinois legislators to receive the Catalyst award for being a new member of the Illinois General Assembly dedicated to promoting businesses and economic growth. Bristow was the only legislator during the night to receive both awards. During the past year, Bristow has sponsored and supported numerous pieces of legislation to promote economic development in the Metro East and Illinois. These reforms included additional legislation supporting local businesses, tax credits rewarding innovation, and expanding apprenticeship opportunities. The St. Louis Regional Chamber represents the business community in the greater St. Louis area across 15 counties in both Illinois and Missouri.

“As the former president of the RiverBend Growth Association, I know the importance of chambers of commerce in promoting economic growth and advocating for their communities,” Bristow said. “During my time with the growth association, I worked to improve our local economy in the Metro East. I am now taking that experience to pass legislation to improve our local and state economy by attracting businesses and creating high-paying jobs.”

010-Inoreader Saves,01-All No Sub,02-Pol,13-GBI,24-ILGA,25-Working,26-Delivered


January 28, 2020 at 11:06AM

State Rep. Gives Back for the Holidays

The Holidays are best spent at home and with family, but what about those who don’t have that same luxury? Local legislators are doing their part to spread Christmas cheer.

During the Christmas and the holiday season, state Rep. Monica Bristow, joined fellow legislators, local leaders, and non-profit organizations to help give back to those in need across the Metro East and RiverBend Region.

Throughout the month of December, Bristow joined more than 50 other local groups in collecting toys and cleaning supplies for RiverBend Family Ministries’ Christmas Baskets. Parents were able to come and pick out toys for their kids and also receive a basket of cleaning supplies. Bristow also spent time volunteering for the Salvation Army.

During her holiday open house, Bristow collected socks for school board member Rosetta Brown’s Socks for Tots drive as well as participated in Lilly and Taylor Freer’s Cookies and Cocoa event to benefit the United Way’s Community Christmas.

(Copyright WBGZ Radio /




Region: Metro East,City: Alton,Feeds,News,Southern,Metro East

via Alton Daily News News

January 1, 2020 at 05:01AM

Reitz awards Gilbault Catholic High School for athletic achievements

“Sports can play a huge roll in these students’ life and development, team sports build the values of hard work and cooperation, and help kids grow into better adults. I’m proud that we have such successful young athletes in Southern Illinois who have a bright future ahead of them. These signs are in recognition of their accomplishments, and of that future.”

25-Working,26-Delivered,09-ILSN,21-Sports,01-All No Sub,02-Pol,24-ILGA,010-Inoreader Saves,13-GBI


October 23, 2019 at 08:26PM

Reitz awards Gilbault Catholic High School for athletic achievements

“Sports can play a huge roll in these students’ life and development, team sports build the values of hard work and cooperation, and help kids grow into better adults. I’m proud that we have such successful young athletes in Southern Illinois who have a bright future ahead of them. These signs are in recognition of their accomplishments, and of that future.”

010-Inoreader Saves,01-All No Sub,02-Pol,09-ILSN,21-Sports,13-GBI,24-ILGA,25-Working,26-Delivered


October 23, 2019 at 08:26PM

State Rep. appointed to serve on Route 66 Centennial Commission

State Rep. Lawrence "Larry" Walsh, Jr., D-Elwood, has been appointed to serve on the Route 66 Centennial Commission, which will help organize official events celebrating the historic highway’s 100th anniversary.

"Route 66 is famous around the world and people visit from all over to travel it and see the sights," Walsh said. "I’m thankful for the opportunity to be part of this commission and celebrate the history of the Mother Road."

The Route 66 Centennial Commission is a bipartisan group of elected officials and appointees from the governor’s office and the various state agencies. They will meet quarterly to discuss the planning of official events, programs, and activities for the upcoming Route 66 centennial celebration in 2026. The commission will be overseen by the Illinois Office of Tourism and Walsh will serve on the commission. Walsh’s position on the commission is on a volunteer basis, which means he will not receive pay or reimbursements.

"Right now our state is the only one planning any sort of celebration for the Mother Road," Walsh said. "Route 66 cuts right through our community which means when people come to enjoy this once in a lifetime they will be supporting our local economy."

010-Inoreader Saves,01-All No Sub,02-Pol,14-Roads,16-Econ,13-GBI,19-Legal,24-ILGA,25-Working,26-Delivered


September 17, 2019 at 07:05AM

Manley’s district office is accepting school supply donations

Natalie Manley

Eric Ginnard –


Natalie Manley

State Rep. Natalie Manley’s district office in Romeoville is collecting school supplies for the Boys & Girls Club of Joliet.

Manley’s office will be accepting glue sticks, pencils, pencil sharpeners, pink erasers, pocket folders, 24-packs of crayons, highlighters, spiral notebooks, scissors, 12-inch rulers, washable broad-tip markers and composition notebooks, according to a post on her office’s Facebook page.

Donors are asked to drop off items at the donation box outside Manley’s district office at 1050 W. Romeo Road in Romeoville. The office will be accepting donations from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. until Aug. 30.

Contact Manley’s office at 815-725-2741 or email for information.

Manley, D-Joliet, represents the 98th Illinois House district.

01-All No Sub,02-Pol,09-ILSN,13-GBI,24-ILGA,25-Working,26-Delivered

City: Joliet,Region: Joliet,Region: South Suburbs,Opinion

via The Herald-News

August 14, 2019 at 10:32PM

Rep. Maurice West to host Mother’s Day lunch


May 9, 2019 at 12:55 PM May 9, 2019 at 12:55 PM

ROCKFORD — State Rep. Maurice West II, D-Rockford, will host a free Mother’s Day luncheon from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. May 11 at Cliffbreakers Event and Conference Center, 700 W. Riverside Blvd.
The Mother’s Day Luncheon will feature former state Rep. Litesa Wallace as a keynote speaker, and food served will come from women-owned local businesses.

RSVP requested: 815-987-7433;



via State – Rockford Register Star

May 9, 2019 at 01:06PM

Blog at

Up ↑