The governor made the announcement despite the fact that the General
Assembly's bipartisan Commission on Government Forecasting and
Accountability has yet to conduct hearings on the move and take a
stand on whether it's justified.
State Sen. Larry Bomke,
R-Springfield, commented: "Today's announcement of the job
relocation is just another shameful example of the governor's
blatant misuse of power. I hoped that the governor would show some
decency, but I'm disappointed to see that he has not. "
Bomke, along with state Reps. Rich Brauer, R-Petersburg, and
Raymond Poe, R-Springfield, have all commented on the lack of
planning that has gone into this proposed move and have questioned
the decision to displace so many families who have made their homes
"There is no reasonable explanation for the move of these jobs,"
stated Brauer. "The governor has already attempted to move the state
capital to Chicago. Now, he's moving the jobs to locations outside
of Springfield, as well. Furthermore, I find it difficult to believe
that they are incapable of finding affordable office space here in
Springfield, with tens of thousands of square feet available at
prices far below market averages."
Poe went on to note that the governor has been indecisive about
where the final home of Department of Transportation jobs will
actually be. "First it was Benton, now Harrisburg. It doesn't appear
that the governor actually has any definite plans for the move of
these positions," Poe commented.
[to top of second column]
According to state law, the governor is restricted in his ability to
send state government work out of the capital city. The statute
requires all essential work to be done in the seat of government:
The only exemptions to this statute are an epidemic of disease or
public danger. Since neither of these conditions exists, the
lawmakers are inquiring as to why the decision was made to move the
Traffic Safety Division of IDOT away from its present site,
currently located in Springfield's IDOT headquarters.
"State government has been a major industry in Springfield for
over 100 years, and moving these positions hurts both the city and
the individuals who depend upon these jobs for their livelihood,"
"With the jobless rate in Springfield at an 18-year high of 5.1
percent, now is a terrible time to consider the move of these
positions," Bomke added. "I want the citizens in my district to know
that I will do everything in my power to persuade the governor to
keep these positions here."
The commission will conduct a public hearing July 31 in
Springfield to make a final decision on the move of jobs.
[Text from file sent on behalf of
Larry Bomke by Illinois
Senate Republican staff]