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BGA: Rauner firm holds state contracts; political round-up

Friday, Apr 18, 2014

Posted by Barton Lorimor (@bartonlorimor)

* The Better Government Association through the Sun-Times…

Since December 2012, GTCR has owned Correctional Healthcare Cos., which got a five-year contract with a five-year renewal option from the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice in February 2013 to provide medical, dental and mental health evaluations and treatment for the approximately 900 inmates, ages 13 to 20, of six state-run youth detention centers in the Chicago area and downstate.

The state deal is worth as much as $99.3 million.

Grant Klinzman, a Quinn spokesman, says the Democratic governor wasn’t involved in awarding the contract and didn’t know of Rauner’s ties to Correctional Healthcare.

Rauner campaign spokesman Mike Schrimpf notes that the Winnetka Republican retired as managing director of GTCR in October 2012 — two months before the firm acquired Correctional Healthcare and four months before the state contract was awarded. Schrimpf says Rauner didn’t work on the Correctional Healthcare acquisition and wasn’t aware the company has a state contract.

Rauner has said if elected he would put his investments into a blind trust.

* Bernie’s column yesterday certainly got people in Springfield talking…

State Rep. SUE SCHERER, the freshman House member from Decatur who faced quiet but — as it turned out — tough primary opposition in March, survived the race with the help of more than $90,000 from committees controlled by House Speaker MICHAEL MADIGAN, D-Chicago.

Most of the Madigan support doesn’t show up on Scherer’s campaign finance report, because $89,702 of the total came as independent expenditures from Democratic Majority, one of the committees Madigan controls. Those expenditures, which can’t be coordinated with a candidate’s campaign, included money for staff, polling, insurance, and printing and postage for a barrage of Scherer mailers that went to households in the 96th.

Because they were independent expenditures, that also meant they weren’t capped. Direct contributions from that committee to Scherer could not have topped $78,900 in the primary.
Scherer’s own campaign committee had $58,085 in the bank as of Jan. 1, raised $94,625 in the first three months of the year, spent $86,792, and ended up with nearly $66,000 in the bank as of March 31.

Rich has already discussed with you, as well as subscribers, about Scherer. But while she’s getting that kind of money from the Speaker…

Mike Bell, Scherer’s Republican challenger this November in the 96th House District, reported just $5 on hand at the close of the first quarter. Bell, R-Edinburg, raised $6,730 through the first three months of the year, $2,000 of which were contributions from his mother, Joan Bell, and another $1,200 on a loan taken by Mike Bell. Another $1,000 came from Elizabeth Soldwedel, who uses the on-air name “Liz Willis” at Capital Radio Group in Springfield and works communications with the Illinois House Republicans.

A roundup…

* WALSH: SORRY, SEN. KIRK, THAT TRAIN HAS ALREADY LEFT THE STATION: What’s changed in the past thirty days that caused Mark Kirk to take back his previous statement? And let’s be clear: he didn’t change his mind. He has no interest in supporting Oberweis, and he genuinely wants Durbin to get reelected.

* Illinois GOP Elects State Central Committee, County Chairs

* ILLINOIS REPUBLICAN PARTY PICKS NEW STATE CENTRAL COMMITTEE MEMBERS

* Steinberg: Rauner’s best friend that money can buy

* SENGER GETS NFIB ENDORSEMENT, DOLD GETS ROTHENBURG UPGRADE

- Posted by Barton Lorimor        


14 Comments
  1. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Friday, Apr 18, 14 @ 6:38 am:

    Great column by Steinberg. A must read.

    Unfortunately, I am not so convinced there will be a revolt of the masses, or even much scorn.

    It is difficult for the Quinn campaign to make much of an issue of Rauner spreading his money around without Rauner bringing up the Neighborhood Recovery Initiative.

    Again, awesome year to be a third party candidate.


  2. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Friday, Apr 18, 14 @ 7:04 am:

    The Rauner contract story is an interesting one:

    1) not so much about malfeasance, as it drives home the point that Bruce Rauner has made a lot of money off of public sector spending he loves to trash;

    2) Contract was awarded under Arthur Bishop. These are personal services contracts…and so, from a pure pr perspective, it is pretty inexcusable for BGA and Sun-Times to have omitted the words “no bid”;

    3) reminds me we have a pending complaint from the AFLCIO re Rauner’s donations as a contractor…How did BGA fail to mention Rauner’s contributions might actually violate state law?


  3. - Upon Further Review - Friday, Apr 18, 14 @ 7:34 am:

    Regarding the Steiberg column in the Sun Times: Hermene Hartman has been awarded contracts from the City Colleges of Chicago and Chicago State University which were worth thousands of dollars annually. Hartman never fails to praise Wayne Watson, the scandal plagued President of Chicago State (formerly the Chancellor of the City Colleges). In doing so, Hartman ignores all of the lawsuits and the millions of dollars in jury verdicts against this bum.

    Pay to play journalism at its worst!


  4. - wordslinger - Friday, Apr 18, 14 @ 8:48 am:

    You can see why Rauner has to run as Mr. Outsider.

    If you were upfront about making your fortune scoring public pension funds to invest in companies that get no-bid government contracts to provide healthcare services to juvenile prisoners….

    ….well, it’s hard to make that sing in a 30 second spot.


  5. - Tough Guy - Friday, Apr 18, 14 @ 10:01 am:

    Scherer has $66,000+ and Bell has $5 on hand and had four individuals account for over 75% of his $6,700+ raised? Not sure how much money the House R’s will want to spend on this adventure. Scherer may have some issues, but wow. See ya Mike.


  6. - Langhorne - Friday, Apr 18, 14 @ 10:43 am:

    Rauner resigned as managing director. Fine. But he is not divested of those investments. And wont even put his interest in a blind trust til he wins ( sworn in?). Remember, this is a hands on guy, who likes to makes phone calls, and go fly fishing w buddies. I dont buy that he isnt still actively involved


  7. - Walker - Friday, Apr 18, 14 @ 10:54 am:

    Rauner probably should form the blind trust right now. He can always dissolve it if he loses.


  8. - Marty - Friday, Apr 18, 14 @ 11:20 am:

    The issue that jumps out at me is the $99.3M for 900 inmates for 5 years. That’s 22K per inmate per year. That’s 2 and 1/2 times what my state retiree health care plan costs and the state is trying to renege on that payment because the premiums are too costly! Of course, I was only an employee for 30 plus years, not an inmate in the system.


  9. - A guy... - Friday, Apr 18, 14 @ 11:24 am:

    Marty, I completely understand your sentiment on this altogether. But $22K is actually a good number by comparison. It’ very expensive to incarcerate. It lends to the discussion of more prevention and other alternatives depending on the transgression.


  10. - wordslinger - Friday, Apr 18, 14 @ 11:34 am:

    –But $22K is actually a good number by comparison. It’ very expensive to incarcerate.–

    That’s not the cost of incarceration. That’s the per-prisoner cost to provide healthcare.


  11. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Apr 18, 14 @ 11:39 am:

    “Bruce Rauner” can’t stand how Gov. Quinn goes about his business, but Bruce Rauner loves the contracts given to his Company?

    @FakeBruceRauner - I plan on putting all Bruce Rauner’s holdings in trust as “Bruce Rauner” makes sure everyone else is “blind” to Insider Dealings? #DoASOneBruceSaysNotAsTheOtherBruceDoes #VotersAreNaive


  12. - Demoralized - Friday, Apr 18, 14 @ 1:48 pm:

    Republicans be on notice. You need to submit your credentials to Joe Walsh so he can determine if you are a really a Republican or not.


  13. - A guy... - Friday, Apr 18, 14 @ 2:18 pm:

    ===wordslinger - Friday, Apr 18, 14 @ 11:34 am:

    –But $22K is actually a good number by comparison. It’ very expensive to incarcerate.–

    That’s not the cost of incarceration. That’s the per-prisoner cost to provide healthcare.====

    Agreed WS. It is not even close to the entire annual cost of incarceration. For this portion, (basic healthcare) it’s a competitive number. The full cost is two and a half times that (even more) depending on the calculation of labor and benefits.


  14. - DuPage - Friday, Apr 18, 14 @ 3:25 pm:

    Conflict of interest.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


* *** UPDATED x1 - Frerichs response *** Former Democratic state treasurer endorses Cross - Cites bipartisanship, Israel bonds as reasons
* Prison reform group responds to new Rauner ad
* Quinn hit on botched early prisoner release program
* Reader comments closed for the weekend
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