The top federal prosecutor in central Illinois has given the green light for a panel of lawmakers to resume hearings into Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn’s anti-violence program that now could unfold only weeks before the Nov. 4 election.
U.S. Attorney James Lewis had asked a bipartisan state commission to hold off on talking to witnesses reviewing a critical state audit of Quinn’s Neighborhood Recovery Initiative. Auditor General William Holland scoured through $54.5 million Quinn poured into an agency handling that “hastily implemented” the program announced during the closing weeks of Quinn’s 2010 campaign for governor. […]
On Monday, Bloomington Sen. Jason Barickman, the Republican co-chair of the commission, and his Democratic counterpart, Rep. Frank Mautino of Spring Valley, went over the latest development with Lewis by phone.
“Mr. Lewis confirmed that he had no further requests of the commission,” Barickman said. “As a result, we plan to proceed with our scheduled hearing on Oct. 8” in Chicago. Mautino could not be reached immediately to confirm if that hearing will take place.
The only thing that can stop those October hearings now is if Chicago’s US Attorney, who is also conducting an investigation, asks for a delay.