Ill. General Assembly to hold special session next week

June 15, 2011 7:58:48 PM PDT
The General Assembly will meet in special session next Wednesday because of a dispute over Illinois' construction program.

House Speaker Mike Madigan and the other legislative leaders conferred with Gov. Pat Quinn Wednesday in his downtown office.

The special session might normally be routine, authorizing Quinn to fund construction projects. But Senate Democrats amended the bill by adding $430 million for education and social services.

Republican leaders were asked Wednesday if they accept that extra spending.

"No, we voted no in May. And it's not something that I believe our caucus accepts at this moment," said State Rep. Tom Cross, (R) House Minority Leader.

"There's 52,000 jobs at stake. We risk losing federal money if we don't go forward. There's road safety issues," said State Sen. Christine Radogno, (R) Senate Minority Leader.

"We are looking at everything we can do to keep these projects up and running. We owe it to the people of this state," said Mica Matsoff, Quinn's spokesperson.

Matsoff added that Quinn wants the Senate to approve the construction bill without the extra money.


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