* Press release…
Statement by Good Government Groups Calling for the Immediate Release of the Report of the Joint Commission on Ethics and Lobbying Reform
We are a group of nonpartisan organizations concerned with good governance in Illinois. We welcome the recent statement from Senate President Don Harmon’s office suggesting that ethics reform will be a priority in the upcoming November veto session. However, we are extremely concerned that despite the session’s rapid approach, the public still has not seen the report of the Joint Commission on Ethics and Lobbying Reform.
The public deserves to see what the legislature is going to consider in November with enough time to respond. Yet in mid-October, just a few weeks before session is scheduled to start, we still have no idea what the Commission will recommend.
The Commission was supposed to release its report on March 31. While some delay is understandable in light of the emergence of the COVID-19 epidemic, it has now been more than six months. This was more than enough time for the Commission to issue its report, or, if more meetings were necessary, to meet remotely or in person with full public participation.
We welcome ethics reform, but only if it’s done right. This rushed, opaque process is wrong. With the litany of corruption scandals Illinoisans have endured, they deserve a transparent process that will produce real, meaningful results. Anything less will further increase cynicism about our legislature at a time when trust in Illinois’ government is already lowest in the nation.
We call on the Joint Ethics Commission’s chairs to release the Commission report immediately.
The Better Government Association (BGA)
Common Cause Illinois
Reform for Illinois
I asked if there was even a report to release…
In late August they said it would be released “in the coming weeks.”
* So, I reached out to a commission member, Sen. Cristina Castro…
The committee hasn’t met. They’d have to meet first to review a report. In the meantime, I’m not only working on finding solutions to get my constituents the help they need during this pandemic, but also talking with my colleagues to gauge what middle ground we can find to enact longterm solutions. There are a lot of the same ideas out there with small differences which mean a lot to some and not much to others. We have to find areas to compromise. That takes time.