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Cullerton measure requires legislative audit of governor’s Legionnaire’s response

tc vets resol 021518SPRINGFIELD- State Senator Tom Cullerton (D-Villa Park) passed legislation today that will require a full legislative audit of the governor’s response to the Legionnaire’s disease outbreak at the Illinois Veterans Home at Quincy.

This week the Illinois Department of Public Health confirmed two more cases of Legionnaire’s disease at the home, continuing an outbreak that has already claimed 13 lives.

“Gov. Rauner cannot continue to hide behind smoke and mirrors. We want answers now,” Cullerton said. “The governor’s office has stonewalled our bipartisan committee’s requests for transparency and accountability.  Now I have no other option but to call on my colleagues on the Legislative Audit Commission to launch a full examination into the governor’s response to this tragic outbreak.”

Cullerton said this will give the Illinois General Assembly a clearer picture of infrastructure problems at the home and the state’s response to them.

“The sooner we examine this atrocity, the more quickly we can remedy the situation,” he said.

Senate Resolution 1186 directs the Illinois Auditor General to perform an audit of the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs to examine the management of Legionnaire’s disease outbreaks. The Auditor General must complete the audit as soon as possible and report its findings and recommendations.

Cullerton, who serves on the Illinois Legislative Audit Commission, said he hopes for cooperation from his colleagues. He has previously sent letters to Co-Chairmen State Senator Jason Barickman (R-Bloomington) and Representative Bob Rita (D-Blue Island) for their assistance in quickly completing the audit.

“Two more of our nation’s heroes have been infected with a preventable ailment,” Cullerton said. “Our nation’s heroes have survived foreign conflict zones – the greatest danger they now face should not be living in a state facility.”

Senate Resolution 1186 passed the Senate with bipartisan support. A copy of the resolution will be presented to the Illinois Auditor General to begin the process.

“I will continue to work toward ensuring our veterans receive the best care and service possible,” Cullerton said. “The Illinois Veterans Home at Quincy needs to be Legionnaire’s free.”

Sen. Tom Cullerton


23rd Legislative District

Years served: 2013 - Present

Committee assignments: Energy and Public Utilities; Insurance; Labor (Chairperson); State Government; Transportation; Veterans Affairs (Vice-Chairperson).

Biography: Born Sept. 20, 1969; studied at the University of Kansas; former village president and trustee of Villa Park; married (wife Stacey), three sons.

Associated Representatives:
Deb Conroy
Diane Pappas