On May 16, 2023, the Champaign City Council will consider approving an agreement to accept $2,000,000 from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) through the Community Development, Violence Prevention and Administrative Costs Grant. This grant funding was appropriated for the City of Champaign by the late State Senator Scott Bennett.
If the City Council approves the agreement, the grant funds will be used to support violence prevention and community development efforts in Champaign. This includes reimbursement for costs related to implementing the City’s Gun Violence Reduction Blueprint for hospital-based intervention, justice victim advocates, youth and family support programs, and wraparound services for victims of violence. Grant funds will also be used by the Fire Department to cover expenses related to hiring, training, and equipping new firefighters. The Police Department would also utilize funds to cover the costs of police officer training, overtime, uniforms, and equipment.
State Senator Paul Faraci said, “This shows Scott Bennett’s unwavering commitment to our community’s safety. Through his tireless efforts, he often secured vital funding for the City of Champaign. This funding serves as a testament to his enduring dedication to public safety in Champaign.”
Mayor Deborah Frank Feinen added, “The City’s commitment to addressing the root cause of violence by investing in supportive and preventative measures as outlined in the Community Gun Violence Prevention Blueprint is already showing positive results. I am grateful for the efforts made by the late Senator Scott Bennett to appropriate this funding for the City, and I also want to thank Senator Paul Faraci for his ongoing commitment to bolstering public safety in Champaign and across the State of Illinois.”
The Community Development, Violence Prevention and Administrative Costs Grant is funded through General Revenue state funding. The City of Champaign is one of 26 Illinois units of local government to be awarded funding through this grant program this fiscal year.