April 12, 2024

Sen. Tammy Duckworth talks Illinois' manufacturing, aviation and reproductive rights

Source: 13 WREX


ROCKFORD (WREX) — Illinois Democratic Senator Tammy Duckworth made a trip to Northern Illinois to try to help bring Monarch Energy to the Rockford area. She met with local officials and the company to see how she can help overcome some federal regulations that could be an obstacle to bringing it here. Some of those obstacles include the dates of when a nuclear plant or wind turbines were built in an area.

"Illinois has been the leader in wind energy," Sen. Duckworth said. "So it's very unfair to penalize us since we've had wind energy for over ten years, and reward states like Texas that are just now putting up their wind energy. I got my marching orders from Mayor [Tom] McNamara. I got my marching orders from the county executives and from the Monarch Energy folks to go back to Washington and push the Department of Energy and the Treasury and say, 'You can't penalize a region like Northern Illinois for doing the right thing all this time by having nuclear, by having wind power."

This would be a potential billion-dollar investment from Monarch Energy, a company that would use waste from the landfill and convert it into clean energy for airplane fuel. Duckworth believes the project can get done in about three years.

Duckworth also came to bring good news to educators in the area, getting grants for Rockford Public Schools and Rock Valley College. It includes a $5.5 million investment into RVC's Workforce Development Program.

"And that's why companies like Monarch are looking here," Duckworth said. "You can't build these facilities without a trained workforce, a disciplined workforce. We have that human resource, those people here in this region who can do that. We need to make these investments in our children so we know they can get the training that they need."

13 WREX's Derek Bayne spoke with Sen. Duckworth about a variety of topics. To hear the whole interview, watch the video above.

By:  Derek Bayne