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SPRINGFIELD –  To give those who have been exonerated and are eligible for the Grant Program for Exonerated Persons more flexibility with their benefits, State Senator Ram Villivalam advanced legislation to allow those covered by the program to pass on unused benefits to dependent spouses or children.

“This gives people who have been wronged by the legal system and may not want to use all of their grant benefits the ability to pass them on to someone in their family who may benefit more,” Villivalam said. “Wrongful convictions are devastating for families, and this legislation gives more agency to how exonerated persons can use their benefits and ensures that their benefits are not going wasted.”

Under the current law, individuals who receive a gubernatorial pardon on the grounds of innocence of the crime for which they were imprisoned, or have received a certificate of innocence from a court, are eligible for the Grant Program for Exonerees. The grant can cover the cost of obtaining a high school equivalency certificate, pay tuition and mandatory fees for undergraduate or graduate study at Illinois public universities, and can be used for four regular school years of full time enrollment.

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Category: Press Releases

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CHICAGO – This past week, State Senator Ram Villivalam was appointed to the Natural Resources and Infrastructure Committee by the National Conference of State Legislatures to serve as one of the voices for Illinois on policy ideas and new legislative solutions.

“I am excited to work with legislators from across the country to tackle the challenges most pressing to our state,” said Villivalam (D-Chicago). “Working this closely with legislators from other states helps add perspectives to the challenges we are facing at home. I am honored to be appointed to this position.”

NCSL Standing Committees are composed of state legislators and legislative staff appointed by the leadership of their legislatures. The committees allow legislators and staff to benefit from the experiences of other states in shaping public policy, sharing best practices and managing the legislative institution.

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parkCHICAGO – With strong support from State Senator Ram Villivalam, the City of Chicago, Forest Preserve District of Cook County, and the Skokie, Niles and Morton Grove Park Districts are set to receive nearly $2.2 million for land acquisition and development for parks and outdoor recreation projects.

“Parks and green spaces make our communities a great place to call home and keep our youth engaged in safe, constructive activities,” said Villivalam (D-Chicago). “This investment will ensure that we are keeping our recreation areas modernized and ready to enjoy for generations to come.”

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Category: Press Releases

­Senator VillivalamSPRINGFIELD – State Senator Ram Villivalam (D-Chicago) released the following statement after Gov. JB Pritzker delivered his FY24 budget proposal to the Illinois General Assembly:

“As part of our commitment to making Illinois the best place to raise a child, I am encouraged that the governor wishes to expand on our investment in education – from pre-K to university. Our youth need a support system that allows them to achieve long-term success, and $250 million in early childhood education funding will provide a solid foundation for their futures.

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Category: Press Releases

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Office Info

District Office
3851 W Devon Ave
Chicago, IL 60659
(872) 208-5188

Springfield Office
Stratton Office Building
401 S. Spring St.
Section C, Room E
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-5500

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