Springfield, IL – This week, Illinois prepared to help with recovery efforts in Puerto Rico; a $1.4 million investment in Southern Illinois will help boost the state’s economy; the start of breast cancer awareness month highlights the need for preventive screenings; and Illinois residents were encouraged to honor their loved ones who served in the Armed Forces.Illinois Offers Puerto Rico HelpIllinois stands ready to assist with recovery efforts in Puerto Rico as residents begin to rebuild and recover after Hurricane Maria. Governor Rauner put more than 550 Illinois National Guardsmen on alert and ready to deploy should they be needed.While the Governor has the authority to activate the Illinois National Guard within the state's borders, he cannot send them to other states or territories without an official request. The Governor sent a letter to Ricardo Rossello, the governor of Puerto Rico letting him know the state of Illinois is eager to help and will mobilize troops immediately, if and when more boots are needed on the ground.Investment to Boost State’s EconomyIllinois will benefit from $1.4 million in new investments by the Delta Regional Authority (DRA) that will boost regional infrastructure, the local workforce and the economy in southern Illinois. The investments by the Authority will go to support public and private partnerships, bringing to Illinois an estimated $22.7 million in new investments. According to the DRA, the investments will be directed to seven projects intended to spur job growth, contribute to community revitalization efforts and provide better health care services for southern Illinois.Investments will be made through the DRA States' Economic Development Assistance Program (SEDAP), which is the agency's main federal funding program that invests in basic public infrastructure, transportation infrastructure and workforce development projects.National Breast Cancer Awareness MonthOctober is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, breast cancer is the second most common kind of cancer in women. About one in eight women born today in the United States will get breast cancer at some point in their lives. The good news is that most women can survive breast cancer if it’s found and treated early. A mammogram can help find breast cancer early when it’s easier to treat. National Breast Cancer Awareness Month is a chance to raise awareness about the importance of early detection of breast cancer.Honoring VeteransTo help remember veterans and tell their incredible stories – and honor their legacy and sacrifice this upcoming Veterans Day – Illinois residents are encouraged to submit a tribute and photo of their loved one who served our country to be displayed in the rotunda of the Illinois Capitol Nov. 1-Nov. 13. Families are invited to submit a photo and written story (max: 250 words), along with the following information: name, military branch (Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, National Guard, Navy) and conflict served (Afghanistan, Iraq, September 11, Gulf War, Vietnam, Korea, WWII, WWI, Peacetime, other).Military photos are preferred but not necessary. Please email submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org by Oct. 30. Submissions can also be mailed to Veterans Day Wall, 309 G Statehouse, Springfield, IL 62706. For questions, call 217-782-1650.
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