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Time to end benefits for state board, commission

Published: Tuesday, Oct. 22, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT

To the Editor:

Illinois is home to many taxpayer-supported boards and commissions, and most of their members are receiving lucrative salaries and benefits for doing a minimal amount of work. In many cases membership is not based on qualifications, but rather on friendships with the political elite.

I have filed legislation to address this misuse of taxpayer resources and clean up these layers of bureaucracy. House Bill 3697 would eliminate salaries for the following boards/commissions: Chicago Transit Authority Board, Civil Service Commission, Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation, Educational Labor Relations Board, State Board of Elections, Department of Employment Security Review Board, Illinois Human Rights Commission, Illinois International Port District Board, Illinois Labor Relations Board (state and local panels), Illinois Liquor Control Commission, Secretary of State Merit Commission, Miners’ Examining Board, State Mining Board, Property Tax Appeal Board, Illinois Racing Board and the Department of State Police Merit Board.

By eliminating these salaries, legislators can provide additional funding for the payment of the state’s backlog of bills and other important state obligations.

My legislation would not affect the salaries tied to necessary work done by members of the Pollution Control Board, Workers Compensation Commission, Prisoner Review Board, Executive Ethics Commission and the Illinois Commerce Commission, since these groups have a long-standing history of meeting regularly for lengthy meetings to address large caseloads.

When Gov. Pat Quinn took office in 2009, he promised to reduce the number of boards and commissions and streamline the efficiency of the others. Four years later, we have more boards and commissions than ever, and I believe the Legislature must take its own action to remedy the problem.

By supporting House Bill 3697, legislators will be taking a giant step in the right direction.

District 75 state Rep. John D. Anthony


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