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|Governor: Do More Work on Ethics Reform
|Gov. Rod Blagojevich hopes lawmakers next week will do more than just override his veto of an ethics bill.
Blagojevich says overriding the veto of a bill that bars state contractors from making political contributions is unnecessary, because he already accomplished that by executive order. The executive order takes effect Jan. 1, 2009. Unlike the legislation the governor vetoed, which would bar contributions by state contractors to the public official whose office oversees that contract -- mostly the governor -- the executive order prohibits contributions by state contractors to lawmakers and state political parties, even though they have little or nothing to do with letting or overseeing state contracts. The governor says they have "influence."
Furthermore, the governor wants lawmakers to take up a bill, H.B. 6699, sponsored by State Rep. Jay C. Hoffman (D-Collinsville), the governor's staunchest ally in the House, that would apply the following ethics provisions:
* Employees of local governments would be prohibited from serving in the General Assembly, with various exceptions. The governor refers to this practice as "double dipping" and "ripping off the taxpayers," and creating a "conflict of interest."
* Lawmakers would have to vote "yes" to accept a pay raise recommended by the Compensation Review Board. Under current law, lawmakers must vote "yes" to turn down a pay raise recommendation, and both chambers must concur.
* Lawmakers who are lawyers who appear before other governmental agencies must disclose who their clients are and what fees they were paid. This provision is aimed at House Speaker Mike Madigan (D-Chicago), a lawyer who represents commercial property owners before the Cook County Board of Review.
* The prohibition contained in the executive order barring contributions by state contractors to legislators and state political parties.
Illinois Senate President Emil Jones (D-Chicago) scheduled a session for Monday to act on the motion to override the governor's veto. The governor then declared a special session for both houses to consider H.B. 6699.
(Source: Illinois Radio Network)
|09 19 08 by Newsroom
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