Illinois lawmakers discuss funding for Veterans' Home improvemen - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Illinois lawmakers discuss funding for Veterans' Home improvements

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The Illinois Veterans' Home was discussed on Wednesday. The Illinois Veterans' Home was discussed on Wednesday.
Governor Rauner spoke about his budget plans on Wednesday. Governor Rauner spoke about his budget plans on Wednesday.
Senator Durbin was curious if the Elmore Infirmary was the cause of the latest cases. Senator Durbin was curious if the Elmore Infirmary was the cause of the latest cases.
Funding for building improvements was discussed. Funding for building improvements was discussed.
Durbin said he offered to help fund improvements with federal dollars. Durbin said he offered to help fund improvements with federal dollars.
QUINCY, Ill. (WGEM) -

Governor Bruce Rauner gave his budget address in Springfield on Wednesday, and one of the biggest topics discussed was what to do with the Illinois Veterans' Home in Quincy, following two more cases of Legionnaires' disease.

"The infections send a clear message." Governor Rauner said. "We need to have money. We need to move quickly to make structural changes to the facilities themselves."

Senator Dick Durbin said on Wednesday that his office has been trying to find where the disease was contracted. He said they wonder if it is from the Elmore Infirmary, where 4 people died in 2015. In 2017, the same strain of Legionella was found there again.

"We'd like to know whether this Elmore building is once again the site of this infection." Senator Durbin said. "Secondly we'd like to know why the State of Illinois has not requested the Veterans Administration to come in and help them find a solution to this terrible challenge."

Governor Rauner added that under his budget plan, the state would fund improvements at the Veterans' Home based on his water management task force findings.

"We've allocated 50 million dollars in Capital improvements to be prepared to address their recommendations for Legionella control." Governor Rauner said.

That being said, Senator Durbin, said both he and Senator Tammy Duckworth want to help use federal dollars to improve the home. That's an offer Durbin said he made to the Governor when Rauner was staying at the home last month.

"We want to be part of the solution. Senator Durbin said. "Two thirds of the money can come from Washington, to help make the IVH the safest Veterans facility in the country."

Senator Durbin added that he is still waiting to hear back from Governor Rauner on that issue.

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