Thursday, December 18, 2014


GOV QUINN CALLS FOR SPECIAL SESSION ON JAN 8th, to consider legislation that would require a new election to replace Comptroller Topinka

Here's my best guess of what this would mean...
It means instead of Gov Rauner being able to appoint someone for four years, if the legislature knocks out a new law that would call for a special election to fill the Comptroller's office for the remainder of the term -- then Gov Quinn could sign it into law prior to his leaving office on Jan 12.   I would suspect this as yet unproposed law, would have Gov Rauner appoint a Comptroller to serve until a special election to fill that seat, which would likely be held on Nov 2016.  As JBT's term would have run through to Jan 2019, that special election would be for just a two year term.  

At that point, the candidates for Comptroller would run for a full FOUR YEAR term in the election of Nov 2018.  -- UNLESS -- the offices of Comptroller and Treasurer are combined, which would require a Constitutional Amendment.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Portion of Gov-Elect Rauner's Press Conf of December 16, 2014

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

President Obama Reacts to the Passing of Judy Baar Topinka

FROM THE WHITE HOUSE: President Obama on the Death of Judy Baar Topinka
"Michelle and I were saddened to learn of the passing of Illinois State Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka.  Judy was an institution in Illinois politics. Her public service spanned more than 30 years, including her tenure in the State Legislature and as Chair of the Illinois Republican Party. Judy was a fierce advocate for her constituents, which I got to see firsthand when she was State Treasurer – the first woman to hold that office. She was blunt, pragmatic, unfailingly cheerful and energetic, and always willing to put politics aside to find commonsense solutions that made a difference for the people of Illinois.  She will be greatly missed.  Michelle and I extend our deepest sympathies to Judy’s family, friends and constituents today."

Illinois Channel Board Member, Katy Lawrence Remembers Judy Baar Topinka

Illinois Channel Board Member
December 10, 2014

Today belongs to Judy Baar Topinka. To her family, her friends, her devoted staff both current and former, and the fortunate taxpayers of this state who had a true advocate - my deepest sympathies for this devastating and shocking loss.

I first met Judy in 1989 as a nineteen year old kid in the Illinois State Senate. I was a Page, and while this position is not one that is considered prestigious, it is a necessary part of keeping the legislative process moving. Can you imagine if every Senator on the floor went off and grabbed their own lunch? Nothing would get done! Just about every morning, she would put her light on (which would indicate she needed something) and I would go over to her desk on the Senate floor and ask what she needed.

 "Kid, I need a cup of coffee - and I don't want one of those little Dixie cup size coffee cups, I want the biggest one they have down in the cafeteria - and I want it full-leaded, no froo froo stuff in it".

 I bring this story up because Judy treated me with the same amount of respect as she did her Senate colleagues (sadly, this was not the case with everyone). Her kindness was welcomed and appreciated given there were not a lot of women lawmakers back then. I looked up to her then, and still do to this day.

 Being on the Senate floor everyday during session affords one the amazing experience of seeing the process at work. Legislation that impacts the citizens of Illinois being debated right before your eyes. It didn't take long to notice that Judy was a respected and trusted ally to the Republican caucus - and had the same respect from those on the other side of the isle. She was truly remarkable that way. Her devotion, work ethic and genuine desire to do what was best for ALL Illinoisans is what sets her apart. She was a trailblazer.

 Her unwavering and tireless efforts on behalf of our citizens is something to be envied by other elected officials. Her public service is legendary. Her ability to work with everyone - also legendary. Her sense of humor, kindness and depth of understanding of people from all different walks of life made it literally impossible not to love her. In fact, I do not believe I have ever heard a negative word about her.

I could go on and on regarding her achievements, but I would rather focus on Judy as a person. I have close friends who work for her, and know first hand on what an incredible woman she is (I can't write "was" yet). You will not find a more devoted staff - and there is a reason for it. Judy not only treated anyone who worked for her well, she treated them like family. She knew when their birthdays were, she knew the names of their pets, she remembered important milestones in their lives and when she lost her bid for Governor, and was no longer Treasurer, her only concern was her staff who would be out of jobs because of her loss. I remember having a conversation with her and that was the only thing she talked about. Not the negative campaign unfairly waged against her, not the fact that she lost (many would have a bitter or bruised ego), but her "family". She is an example for all employers on how you should treat your staff. Her entire staff - both present and past - would run through a brick wall for her without questioning why. . . . find me an employer that every single person who worked for you would do that.

To say I will miss her would be an understatement. I love her, and will never forget her. I am grateful to have known her all of these years. Today belongs to Judy Baar Topinka.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Turning Corner After the Elections

Author Patrick Rice: Vanishing School Boards

We talk with Patrick Rice, PhD, about his book "Vanishing School Boards" which concerns the growing intrusion of State and Federal governments into the management of local schools, that are supposed to be run by a local school board.

Pharma Security: Requiring Combination Locks on Pill Containers

We talk with Rep Mike Zalewski, who is considering a bill that would require certain pharmaceuticals could only be sold in a container that comes with a combination lock built into the cap.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Gov. Edgar on What to Expect from Gov. Elect Rauner

Vision 20/20 Education Initiative, and the Difficulties Managing School Budgets with Less Money, Increased Mandates

Cong Rodney Davis Statement on Gov-Elect Rauner's Meeting with the Illinois Congressional Delegation

Washington, DC – U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis (R-Ill.), along with the Illinois Congressional Delegation, today met with Illinois Governor-elect Bruce Rauner at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC.
"I appreciate Governor-elect Rauner continuing to reach out to legislators and his willingness to travel to Washington to meet with us, an important step in building a strong, working relationship between his office and the entire Illinois Congressional Delegation. While collectively we won't agree on every issue, there are certainly a number of areas, such as transportation, agriculture and research, where I'm confident that we'll be able to work together and make a positive difference for Illinois families. I hope that today's bipartisan, bicameral meeting was the first of many to come over the next two years so that we can show our constituents that we are ready and willing to govern and work together."


Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Difficulty Managing School Budgets in Poor Economy - Michael Jacoby of I...

Gov-Elect Rauner Says Transition Team Has Discovered $1.4 Billion in Deficit Spending that was Hidden by Phony Revenue & "Budget Booby Traps"

During the Veto Session of the Legislature, Gov-Elect Rauner announced his Transition Team had thus far discovered the state budget is out of balance by some $1.4 Billion.   Rauner's team put out a list that showed some $600 million of bills for Fiscal Year 2015 [ ending this June], were put into the FY 2014 budget, thus making the state budget spending for 2015 look to be less than it really was.

They also site the borrowing of money from designated funds, and then counting this borrowed money as "revenue" when in fact it had to be paid back to the funds from which it was taken.