Area legislator meets with SIU chancellor
Heading into the holiday season, State Sen. Dale Fowler, R-Harrisburg, attended a Christmas breakfast for young entrepreneurs, visited with members of the Marion Chamber of Commerce and had a discussion with the Southern Illinois University’s chancellor about upcoming economic development in the area.
Fowler kicked off the start of the week of Dec. 11-15 by meeting with Carlo Montemagno, the chancellor of Southern Illinois University Carbondale.
Fowler joined the SIUC administrator for a discussion about upcoming economic development projects within the region and efforts to promote tourism in Southern Illinois.
On Dec. 12, Fowler attended the Marion Chamber of Commerce monthly luncheon, hearing about economic development in the area and getting the latest news from area business leaders.
Later in the week, Fowler attended a meeting of the Southern Illinois Veterans Coalition.
Fowler was invited to attend the bi-monthly meeting to learn more about the organization’s upcoming events and outreach in the community.
On Dec. 13, Fowler attended a Christmas celebration for the members of the Saline County CEO program, an organization that strives to teach leadership, promote creativity and encourage the growth and success of a younger generation.
Fowler mentors one of the 11 students participating in the year’s group.
Continuing with the holiday spirit, Fowler hosted an evening of hot chocolate, cookies and music prior to the Harrisburg Christmas Lighting Parade on Dec. 14.
Fowler planned to participate in the “Miracle for Makanda” benefit scheduled Friday evening, Dec. 15.
Proceeds will go toward helping a family in Franklin County currently facing a challenging battle of brain cancer with their 10-year-old daughter, Makanda, and her treatments.
With the New Year approaching, Fowler is sharing information about several measures taking effect Jan. 1 which seek to provide veterans with the tools they need to be successful when returning to civilian life.
Senate Bill 1238 allows for the expansion of the number of veterans’ courts in the state, which are able to focus directly on the special needs of former and current members of the armed services.
In some instances, veterans who qualify and successfully comply with court orders are able to receive the treatment they need and have their charges dismissed.
Senate Bill 866 requires the state’s Department of Veterans’ Affairs to give informational resources on service animals to veterans returning from deployment.
The legislation was introduced in response to information gathered by the 2015 Veterans’ Suicide Task Force.
The task force found that many veterans do not know about all the services and programs which are offered to them, especially those pertaining to service animals.
Senate Bill 838 seeks to educate veterans about the importance of early cancer screening.
House Bill 3701 seeks to help current and former members of the military advance their higher education, by requiring public universities and community colleges to form a policy to award appropriate academic credit for the education and training gained during military service.