05212019CM0539SPRINGFIELD – To restore the public’s trust in their elected officials in light of recent allegations of corruption within the Illinois government, State Senator Laura Fine (D-Glenview) joined her colleagues in the House and Senate to support a set of measures to overhaul ethics laws in Illinois.

The legislative package includes nine proposals to increase transparency in all levels of state government. The lawmakers gathered Thursday to call on the Joint Commission on Ethics and Lobbying Reform to consider recommending the measures in their final report.

“Government officials should be working for their constituents, not themselves,” said Fine. “These steps have the potential to create long-term change to root out corruption and dishonesty in our state government.”

Among the measures Fine is encouraging the Joint Commission to consider:

  • Establishing term limits on legislative leadership;
  • Enacting a policy to temporarily remove a legislator as a leader and/or committee chair during a criminal investigation or in the event of a charge/indictment;
  • Prohibiting legislators from lobbying elected officials from other units of government;
  • Establishing at least a one-year prohibition on legislators leaving their offices and working as lobbyists;
  • Expanding disclosure of legislators’ outside income; and
  • Enabling the Legislative Inspector General to self-initiate investigations and making it an independent agency for the purposes of budgets and hiring.

“I hope all lawmakers—no matter their party—can agree these reforms are crucial to restoring Illinoisans’ confidence in government,” said Fine. “As elected officials, we need to stay vigilant and hold bad actors accountable to prevent corruption.”

The Joint Commission on Ethics and Lobbying Reform is expected to release a report in time for final action.