Wilsonville edit for webWILSONVILLE- State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) on Thursday visited the Wilsonville Community Center to take part in their summer food program for impoverished children. The program is one of many that the Illinois Coalition for Community Services (ICCS) maintains.

“It’s unconscionable to think that the governor would find a program as valuable as this to be expendable,” Manar said. “All of the programs offered by ICCS offer working families that extra help they need to make ends meet.”

In Macoupin County, ICCS serves close to 1,000 residents through community outreach programs such as a mobile health clinic and a summer meal program for children in poverty.

Last year, these programs and many others were targeted by the Rauner administration for cuts in state aid. In response, Manar invited representative from ICCS to testify at a Senate committee to detail how the cuts would impact their operations. They explained that the loss of funding would result in massive layoffs, and cancellation of the summer food program.

In the days following this hearing, ICCS, Senator Manar and other legislators fought to restore funding for community services in Illinois. Their funding was restored in May of 2015, which allowed for the vital summer food program to continue.

This year, ICCS has been awaiting payments from the state for over a year due to the ongoing budget impasse. Despite the lack of state funding, they are still maintaining many of their services. As a result, ICCS reported they have had to cut salaries by 25%, forcing many employees to survive on wages close to the poverty line.

“The staff and local volunteers at ICCS have dedicated so much time and effort into their work. It’s really unfortunate that they have to fight for funding once again, but I am proud to stand by them and fight for what they deserve.” said Manar.

In 2014, ICCS served 5,146 meals in the 48th district including 882 meals in Wilsonville.

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