Those who predicted an easy victory for Cong. Jesse Jackson’s south suburban airport plan weren’t paying attention.
As Capitol Fax readers know, Senate President Emil Jones said he would wait to see what Senate Majority Leader Debbie Halvorson thinks. And now this:
Will County leaders Tuesday asked local legislators to support the county’s plan for developing and operating a third Chicago-area airport at Peotone.
County Executive Larry Walsh, a Democrat, and Republican County Board member Jim Moustis met with nine local legislators and a representative of House Minority Leader Tom Cross (R-Oswego). U.S. Rep. Jerry Weller (R-Ill.), whose district covers the airport site, arranged the closed-door, 90-minute meeting in New Lenox.[…]
State Sen. Debbie Halvorson (D-Crete), the Senate majority leader, will steer the bill through the legislature, Walsh said, adding he “firmly believes” there will be action on it this spring.
The Will County plan contradicts Jackson’s plan in several ways, and an internal IDOT memo throws some doubt on part of the congressman’s proposal, according to the Daily Southtown.
An Illinois Department of Transportation memo casts doubt on whether the state can transfer land set aside for an airport to a group headed by U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr.
The memo, prepared by IDOT lawyers for Transportation Secretary Tim Martin, suggests the land near Peotone should not be relinquished without the blessing of the General Assembly.
The document also questions the legality of how the Jackson group selected two developers to design and build the airport. Illinois procurement laws do not allow design and construction contracts to be lumped together.