Armed Forces veterans who wish to receive a flu vaccine to protect against both seasonal flu and the H1N1 virus (Swine Flu), there is no reason to pay for the flu shot or wait in long lines to receive it. An ample supply of the combined vaccine is available to veterans at no charge from Jesse Brown VA Medical Center, located at 820 S. Damen Avenue in Chicago. All veterans are eligible, even if they have not previously used VA services.

The Department of Veterans Affairs strongly endorses the use of the flu vaccine as protection against both seasonal flu and H1N1. It has been proven effective in reducing the spread of flu viruses and also helps to protect the families of anyone who receives the vaccine.

Flu shots are offered at the medical center Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Room 1458, located on the first floor of the Damen Pavilion. No appointment is needed and veterans will receive their choice of either free self-parking or free valet parking at the medical center’s garage entrance on Ogden Avenue.

Veterans are asked to bring their VA identification card, DD Form 214 or other proof of military service to receive their flu shot if they are not already enrolled for care at the medical center. It is not necessary to have previously enrolled in the VA system to receive a flu shot.

Category: Constituent Services

Last weekend, Working Bikes, a local non-profit, sold over 100 bicycles to children took and have received numerous requests from families that weren't able to make it out last Saturday. To help the families that missed this great opportunity the organization is repeating their $5 bicycle sale this Saturday December 18th. This will be the final day of the sale and children must be present! There is a limit of one bicycle per child.

All of the bicycles are gently used donations but are in great condition.

When: Saturday December 18th, 1 to 5pm

Where: 2434 S. Western Ave. Chicago, IL, 60608

Working Bikes is a nonprofit organization. We receive donated bicycles and recycle them by repairing them and selling them in our store front. The revenue that we generate is used to fulfill our mission of sending bicycles to developing countries in South America, Central America and Africa. For more information visit www.workingbikes.org

Category: Constituent Services

Recently Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity director Warren Ribley announced $5 million in micro lending opportunities to help small business through the recession.

According to the press release, the fund is a revolving loan program funded through the federal "IKE" Disaster Recovery program and from DCEO's revolving loan portfolio under the High Growth and Emerging Small Business Loan Program. Microloans through the Fund can be utilized for a variety of start-up and operational costs. Newly formed business can apply for loans up to $50,000, while the limit for established businesses is $75,000. Loans originated will have a maximum fixed interest rate of 10 percent up to five years. The program will begin immediately and will run until funds are exhausted. Interested small businesses should apply directly to one of the lenders.

If you are a small business owner or are thinking about starting your own small business, I encourage you to apply today.

Category: Constituent Services

The Illinois CPA Society has announced that they will again be offering free tax preparation to active duty military members and their families throughout the state. The project is done in partnership with the Internal Revenue Service and matches families with local volunteer CPAs.

According to the the Illinois CPA Society, the program is offered year-round and available to members of the Armed Forces who have recently returned or are still serving in a combat zone or qualified hazardous duty area. Volunteer CPAs help military families take full advantage of the unique tax benefits, exclusions and filing extensions available to them.

The program is funded by the Military Service Tax Preparation Project and is easy to obtain as long as you fit the following criteria:

• Be an Illinois resident; and

• Be a member of the U.S. Armed Forces having served in a combat zone or qualified hazardous duty area within the 2010 tax calendar year; and

• Be a member of the U.S. Armed Forces serving in a contingency operation.

Family members can request assistance on behalf of the military personnel.

For more information please visit my district office, visit the Illinois CPA Society’s website, www.icpas.org, or contact Jill Wiles Wolf, Public Service Manager, at 800=993-0407, extension 277 or via e-mail at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Category: Constituent Services

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Springfield Office:
619 Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
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