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PARK FOREST – After hearing from residents who felt helpless when Rich East High School closed their doors in 2020, State Senator Patrick Joyce (D-Essex) sponsored a new law to prevent neighborhood schools from closing without public input.

“The closure of Rich East High School left many households angry because the decision left residents’ voices unheard, even though it affected their kids and the communities they live in,” Joyce said. “With this new law, residents will have the chance to offer feedback on decisions that would impact the lives of students, families and educators.”

In 2019, District 227 was faced with the decision to close one or more of their three schools due to a lack of funding, declining enrollment and aging facilities. The Rich Township High School District in Cook County voted to close Rich East High School, which served Matteson, Park Forest, Olympia Fields, Chicago Heights and Richton Park residents. This decision forced these students to move to either Rich Central or Rich South High Schools.

Joyce understood that many people in the community were upset by the closure and that Rich East families felt left out of the decision-making process, motivating him to introduce legislation to change the way school boards handle such decisions.

Read more: New Joyce law makes residents’ voices heard on neighborhood school closures

Category: Press Releases

Joint Facebook Live

PARK FOREST – State Senators Patrick Joyce (D-Essex), Elgie Sims Jr. (D-Chicago) and Michael E. Hastings (D-Frankfort) are inviting local minority contractors to participate in an informational discussion to learn how to conduct business with the Illinois Capital Development Board.

The virtual workshop will take place Thursday, Aug. 12 at 9 a.m.

“Sustainable development is the pathway to the future that we want for everyone,” said Senator Elgie R. Sims, Jr. (D-Chicago). “We have to ensure that we are providing a fair and inclusive environment to support diversity efforts in the construction industries. This way we develop a framework that generates economic growth for the entire state.”

Read more: Sims, Joyce and Hastings urge contractors to participate in upcoming Women & Minority Contractor...

Category: Events

broadband 071921KANKAKEE – In an effort to bring high-quality broadband to residents, State Senator Patrick Joyce (D-Essex) is urging local organizations to apply for the second round of state broadband grant funding.

“Reliable internet access is more important than ever as people continue to work remotely and participate in summer classes online,” Joyce said. “I’m encouraging local organizations to apply for broadband funding as we work to expand digital access in our communities.”

The Office of Broadband Regional Engagement for Adoption + Digital Equity (READY) program is designed to increase access, adoption and use of high-speed internet access through the lens of digital equity and inclusion. To further these efforts across all ten economic development regions of the state, the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity’s Office of Broadband is launching the next READY notice of funding opportunity, with another $250,000 in grants now available.

The Broadband READY program is part of a comprehensive Digital Equity Package to boost broadband capacity while addressing existing broadband equity gaps. The READY program and other investments to enhance community planning and equitable implementation will complement the Connect Illinois program, a $400 million plan to deliver universal access to high-speed internet statewide.

Read more: Joyce encourages local groups to apply for broadband funding

Category: Press Releases

Coffee Conversation

BOURBONNAIS – In an effort to be more accessible to community members, State Senator Patrick Joyce (D-Essex) will be holding a Coffee, Conversation & Constituent Services event next week.  

“I encourage folks to join me to talk about the issues facing the state over a cup of coffee,” Joyce said. “I look forward to meeting everyone that attends.”

Community members are welcome to stop by Starbucks in Bourbonnais to work with the senator’s staff and receive assistance with different services. Attendees can receive help with FOID cards applications, unemployment and much more.

With questions or for additional information, contact Joyce’s office at 708-756-0882 or visit SenatorPatrickJoyce.com.

WHO:  State Senator Patrick Joyce
WHAT:   Coffee, Conversation & Constituent Services    
WHEN:   Saturday, July 31 from 9 to 11 a.m.        
WHERE:  Starbucks
532 Main St. NW, Bourbonnais 

Category: Events

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Contact Me

Springfield Office:
118 Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
217.782.7419

District Office:
270 Main St.
Park Forest, IL 60466
708.756.0882