Online Staff Report
WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Rep. Cheri Bustos, D-Ill., has announced plans to hold three regional economic meetings in August followed by a district-wide economic summit later this fall. The announcement comes on the heels of her week-long “Make it in America” tour across Illinois’ 17th Congressional District.
At the regional meetings and the district-wide economic summit, Bustos will bring together leaders from various economic sectors, businesses, educational institutions and community organizations to discuss ways to work together to create jobs and bolster the region’s economy and manufacturing sectors.
“After spending the last six month traveling to all corners of our region and listening to workers, business leaders and educators, I’m pleased to announce plans to hold a district-wide economic summit later this fall with advance regional meetings next month,” said Bustos. “Job creation and reinvigorating our manufacturing base have been my top priorities since Day 1 of my campaign for Congress. I strongly believe in our workers — they’re the best in the world — and by increasing collaboration among key community leaders, our region’s economy can capitalize on that workmanship and stay strong for years to come. This economic summit will help accomplish that goal.”
Over the last week on her “Make it in America” tour, Bustos traveled around Illinois’ 17th Congressional District to meet with local workers and businesses to talk about her ideas to create jobs here at home and to boost American manufacturing.
In advance of the tour, Bustos hosted a telephone town hall with House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, who is spearheading the “Make it in America” initiative in Congress.
Bustos’ American Jobs Matter Act, which has been incorporated into the “Make it in America” initiative, would increase American manufacturing and boost job creation here at home by enabling the government to take into consideration the creation of American jobs when accepting bids for federal contracts.
Bustos also introduced legislation to ensure American flags are actually produced in America, to strengthen “Buy American” provisions for transportation projects, and supports eliminating tax breaks for companies that ship jobs overseas and cracking down on foreign currency manipulation.
In April, Bustos also spent a week on the road, touring the seven community colleges that serve the region. Following the tour, she introduced the Access to Education and Training Act, which would allow students who receive Pell grants to take advantage of the Pell grants year-round, including during the summer months, even if the student went to school full-time during the fall and spring semesters. Many of those who would benefit most are non-traditional students who want to complete their courses faster so they can get back into the workforce.
Bustos also participates in “Cheri on Shift,” which is an ongoing, periodic event at which she meets with and shadows workers at their job site. Bustos has held “Cheri on Shifts” delivering packages with UPS in East Moline, stocking shelves at the Hy-Vee in Silvis, with IBEW trainees in Rockford, and at G & M Distributors in Galesburg.
Bustos’ focus on jobs and manufacturing, and her plans for an economic summit, are a direct result of the commitment she made to Illinois voters during her campaign for Congress. From big cities to the smallest of towns, Bustos consistently heard from the people of her region that they were concerned about the future of the middle class, and their children having the same opportunities they did, starting with access to good-paying jobs.
Bustos believes that Illinois’ 17th Congressional District, which from the Quad Cities to Rockford to Peoria forms a “manufacturing triangle,” has the best workers in the world, and if given the chance, they can out-compete workers anywhere.
Further details about the regional economic meetings and the district-wide economic summit will be released over the coming weeks.
Posted July 8, 2013