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Senate welcomes Consul General of Japan in Chicago (VIDEO)

Mr. Naoki Ito, the Consul General of Japan in ChicagoToday the Senate had the honor of welcoming Mr. Naoki Ito, the Consul General of Japan in Chicago.
Mr. Ito has had a long and distinguished career in the foreign service. After joining the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1984, he served in various positions around Asia before moving to the United Kingdom in 2008. He was named Consul General of Japan in Chicago in February of this year.


Trotter stands up for people unjustly convicted

Sen. Donne TrotterSPRINGFIELD – Today, legislation meant to create a continuous fund for claims by people wrongfully imprisoned passed a key Senate budget committee. The Illinois Court of Claims stopped paying these claims nearly three years ago as a result of the budget stalemate. Senate Bill 1993 is necessary to keep up with claims payments.

The budget stalemate in Illinois has prevented the claim payments of 20 exonerated former inmates owed a total of $3.4 million. Illinois owes a debt to people unjustly incarcerated, and the claim they receive will help them rebuild their lives.

New twist in Rauner administration lease deals has Manar asking: Who’s in charge?

dwight 050417SPRINGFIELD – During testimony before a Senate budget committee this week, the acting director of the Illinois Department of Corrections said he didn’t know why the former state women’s prison in Dwight had become unfit to serve as a warehouse for state paperwork. He told members of the committee that he would look into it and get back to them.

The Rauner administration recently moved the paperwork out of Dwight to a former furniture store in Springfield. The deal cost taxpayers $2.4 million.

Today, through news reports, the prison agency explained that the Illinois Department of Central Management Services is now responsible for the Dwight property.

Tom Cullerton: Warehousegate turns into worst episode of Prison Break ever

tcullerton 022817 178SPRINGFIELD -- Questions have been raised about why taxpayers are paying $2.4 million for a state lease so state paperwork can be stored at a vacant furniture store in Springfield. The paperwork had been stored at a closed state prison at little to no cost to taxpayers. Gov. Bruce Rauner’s administration had said the prison building was in disrepair and the paperwork needed to be moved.

But the state’s prison director told members of an Illinois Senate committee this week that he had no knowledge of this. He said he would try to get some answers.