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|Springfield Debates State Cars
|Should legislative leaders get state cars?
This is an issue now that Garrit Cullerton, the adult son of Illinois Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago), was arrested and charged with DUI while driving a state car assigned to his father.
It turns out the General Assembly maintains a fleet of vehicles. The Illinois Senate has six vehicles, while the House has eight. They're under the control of the majority and minority leaders in each caucus.
Politicians are now questioning whether this is a worthwhile expenditure, or whether it's a perk that lawmakers have given themselves that should be eliminated in these tough economic times.
State Sen. Matt Murphy (R-Palatine) says he doesn't expect to solve the state's budget crisis merely by cutting back on cars, but it's the type of thing that diminishes public confidence that the state spends taxpayers' money carefully. He says it's possible that maintaining the fleet costs less than what mileage reimbursement would cost if leaders and staffers used their own cars, but that should be evaluated, as should the rationale for these vehicles being assigned to legislative leaders in the first place.
Gov. Pat Quinn is uncomfortable about the arrangement too, though he says he doesn't want to make a snap judgment about the situation before talking with legislative leaders and hearing what their arguments are, if any. He says this is an issue for the General Assembly, but he says he can be persuasive there if he has to be.
(Illinois Radio Network)
|04 21 10 by Newsroom
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