Sen. Melinda BushGRAYSLAKE – State Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake) introduced a package of legislation giving more power to the state ethics commission to weed out corruption.

“I’ve been working with advocates for the last three years to clean up corruption and finally hold people accountable,” Bush said. “In light of the recent revelations involving former members of the General Assembly, we can’t allow this shameful behavior to continue. The only way to stop it is to give our watchdogs more power to investigate and take independent action.”

The package of legislation contains three bills, Senate Bills 2488, 1426, and 74, each targeting a different loophole in the ethics code. The first bill calls for the immediate removal of a member of the Senate from any leadership position upon being charged with a crime. Currently there are no conditions which specify when or if a sitting member of the General Assembly should face such restrictions.

The second extends the deadline for filing an ethics complaint to 12 months after the Legislative Inspector General begins an investigation. Currently, a complaint can only be filed within 18 months after the most recent alleged violation.

The third gives the Inspector General the power to begin an investigation without prior approval of the ethics commission.

“This state’s ethics record is appalling and that is due in large part to the inaction of self-serving and apathetic lawmakers who are unwilling to fight for what’s right,” Bush said. “We need to do better and my legislation is just the beginning. We need to overhaul the system and clean up Illinois.”