“Legislator of the Year” Award
I was honored this month to be chosen as the “Legislator of the Year” by the Illinois Association of Agricultural Fairs (IAAF) during a ceremony at the Iroquois County Fair. The IAAF is the statewide association which represents all the county fairs in Illinois.

State Representative Tom Bennett (R-Gibson City) will host a free senior resource fair in Pontiac on Wednesday August 15.

“I encourage seniors and their families to stop by our free event on August 15 to participate in health screenings and pick up information about resources available in the area,” Bennett said.

The resource fair will be at the Pontiac Rec Center, located at 900 N. Elm Street, from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. In addition to the health screenings and resource information, there will also be free refreshments and a chance to register for a door prize.

For more information, contact Bennett’s Pontiac office at (815) 844-9179 or visit his website at www.repbennett.com. The fair is being co-hosted by Health Alliance, the Pontiac Chamber and Pontiac Parks and Recreation.
WATSEKA – State Representative Tom Bennett (R-Gibson City) was named “Legislator of the Year” by the Illinois Association of Agricultural Fairs during a ceremony at the Iroquois County Fair.

Patti Bellock named DHFS director
Gov. Rauner has named Patti Bellock as the new director of the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services (DHFS). Bellock has served in the Illinois House since 1999. She has established herself as one of the House’s leading experts on Medicaid as well as the health care and social services programs she will oversee as director.

Local fire departments receive state grants
The Office of the State Fire Marshal has announced that five local fire departments have received funding under the Small Equipment Grant Program. In all, more than 100 departments statewide were awarded a share of the $2 million in grant funds which were announced this week. The grant program is intended to help fire departments and not-for-profit ambulance services with purchases of small firefighting or ambulance equipment.

Governor signs teacher licensure bill into law
Governor Rauner has signed into law my bill to help ease Illinois’ teacher shortage. The legislation, House Bill 5627, makes it easier for teachers who hold out-of-state teaching licenses to become teachers in Illinois as well. It also eliminates a requirement that someone who already holds a teaching license in Illinois must go through the long and costly process of getting a separate license to become a substitute teacher.