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Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $911,900 in CARES Act Recovery Assistance to Expand Workforce Training in the Manufacturing, Transportation and Healthcare Sectors in Central Illinois

WASHINGTON – Today, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $911,900 CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to Illinois Central College, East Peoria, Illinois, to expand its workforce training facilities.

This project will grow Illinois Central College’s workforce training programs, helping to fill in-demand jobs in the manufacturing, transportation, and healthcare sectors. This EDA investment will be matched with $521,177 in local funds and is expected to create 100 jobs and generate $2 million in private investment.

“The Economic Development Administration is committed to helping communities across the nation implement strategies to rebound from the pandemic and build a better America,” said Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Alejandra Y. Castillo. “This EDA investment will help Illinois Central College construct an emergency vehicle storage building and purchase new tractor trailer and welding equipment in support of its workforce training programs, ensuring that the regional economy is resilient to future economic disruptions.”

“ICC has led our Illinois Workforce Equity Initiative since its founding, and this infusion of federal dollars will further our efforts to create better access to great careers in underserved communities,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “Over 5,000 residents have enrolled in the consortium’s training programs around the state, and I’m working with the Illinois General Assembly to invest another $25 million in removing barriers to the healthcare field. I’m proud of the progress we’re making by bringing state and federal resources together to open more doors for Central Illinois.”

“Community colleges like Illinois Central College in East Peoria are uniquely positioned to help close the skills gap and fill critical workforce shortages,” said Senator Dick Durbin. “This federal EDA funding will help create jobs and bolster Central Illinois’ workforce. That’s why I supported the CARES Act and will continue advocating for strong investments in Illinois’ communities.”

“I’m proud that the CARES Act is still serving as a catalyst for workforce development to empower communities and create better futures,” said Senator Tammy Duckworth. “I’ll continue working to help ensure Illinoisans and local economies get the federal support they need to thrive.”

“Illinois Central College continues to lead the way in providing excellent workforce development programs, preparing the next generation of central Illinois’ labor force,” said Congressman Darin LaHood (IL-18). “This funding will provide our community with new workforce development facilities, and I applaud President Sheila Quirk-Bailey for her continued commitment to Peoria and central Illinois.”

This project is funded under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (Public Law 116-136 PDF), which provided EDA with $1.5 billion for economic assistance programs to help communities prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus. EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance, which is being administered under the authority of the bureau’s flexible Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) (PDF) program, provides a wide-range of financial assistance to eligible communities and regions as they respond to and recover from the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA invests in communities and supports regional collaboration in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.

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