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June 1, 1999

Ryan Establishes Illinois Federal Clearinghouse

WEST CHICAGO -- Governor George H. Ryan today announced the creation of the "Illinois Federal Clearinghouse," a comprehensive effort to increase the level of federal money coming to Illinois.

"For too many years, Illinois has struggled to receive our fair share of federal money," Ryan said. "The establishment of the Clearinghouse will improve awareness of federal grants for communities and procurement opportunities for businesses throughout Illinois. While the web-site will be growing and changing over the coming months, there is already plenty of information available that can provide immediate benefits to the citizens of Illinois."

The Clearinghouse is an Internet-based method of improving the flow of information on grant and procurement opportunities to state and local agencies as well as private companies that can qualify for federal funding. The Clearinghouse also will provide a way to track federal grants that have been applied for and received. Key contacts will be listed for each agency and links will be provided with state and federal agencies as well as other primary sources for procurement and grant information.

Over the past two decades, there have been numerous studies detailing the ratio of money paid by each state's taxpayers to the federal government versus the benefits received. The biggest factors used to determine the state rankings are individual federal tax payments and payments made directly to individuals from the federal government. Illinois, with a higher than average annual income, has consistently been near the bottom of these rankings.

"My goal is to help our congressional delegation maximize the federal grants that Illinois' agencies, local governments and businesses receive. We're going to do everything we can -- as a team -- to improve the ratio of federal return on our tax dollars," Ryan said. "The Illinois Federal Clearinghouse will help with that effort."

Of the $1.4 trillion federal budget, 57% is spent directly on individuals through programs such as Social Security and Medicare, where the state has little opportunity to increase federal funding. Other major portions of the federal budget include grants (17%) and procurements (12%). The Clearinghouse is designed to promote awareness of these opportunities.

The Clearinghouse will be affiliated with the Governor's Office of Statewide Performance Review. The goal for state agencies is not simply to maximize federal funding, but to do so in ways that most efficiently promote the stated goals of each agency program.

"We are pleased the Governor has taken the initiative to put the Clearinghouse together," said State Sen. Arthur L. Berman, (D-Chicago) co-chair of the Illinois Commission on Intergovernmental Cooperation.(MORE)

"We pledge the continuing support of the Illinois Commission on Intergovernmental Cooperation to identify available federal grants and to assist in the development of a system to monitor local government grant applications and awards," Berman added.

"We are confident the information available will assist state agencies and taxpayers alike take advantage of federal funding opportunities," added State Rep. Kathleen L. Wojcik, (R-Schaumburg) co-chair of the commission.

The Illinois Federal Clearinghouse is located at: http://www.state.il.us/fedclear/.


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