Ethics Reform

  • Senator Fine joins fellow lawmakers to push for ethics reform

    Sen. Laura FineSPRINGFIELD – To restore the public’s trust in their elected officials in light of recent allegations of corruption within the Illinois government, State Senator Laura Fine (D-Glenview) joined her colleagues in the House and Senate to support a set of measures to overhaul ethics laws in Illinois.

    The legislative package includes nine proposals to increase transparency in all levels of state government. The lawmakers gathered Thursday to call on the Joint Commission on Ethics and Lobbying Reform to consider recommending the measures in their final report.

  • Manar urges ethics commission to consider nine reforms ahead of final report

    Sen. Andy ManarSPRINGFIELD – In response to ongoing federal investigations surrounding Illinois government, State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) is calling on the Joint Commission on Ethics and Lobbying Reform to consider including in their final report sweeping measures that would overhaul ethics laws in Illinois.

    Manar has spent his career in Springfield advocating for stronger ethics laws, sponsoring a 2017 piece of legislation that closed loopholes allowing Cabinet-level appointees of the Illinois governor to use official positions to campaign for candidates. Additionally, he was a Senate sponsor on a 2019 piece of legislation that created the Joint Commission on Ethics and Lobbying Reform.

  • Coalition of democratic lawmakers propose sweeping ethics reforms

    CapitolLawmakers encourage passage of nine specific measures during upcoming Veto Session

    In the wake of the numerous, ongoing federal investigations involving bribery, influence peddling and insider-trading impacting state government officials and lobbyists, a broad coalition of lawmakers gathered today to announce their support for nine specific ethics reform measures that they believe could receive bi-partisan support in the upcoming veto session.

    Democratic lawmakers from both the Illinois House of Representatives and Illinois Senate say their proposals would dramatically increase transparency and take meaningful strides toward restoring public trust in state government. Specifically, lawmakers point to nine steps that relate directly to the activities of lobbyists, legislators, and General Assembly leadership:

  • Democratic Co-Chairs Remain Committed to Ethics, Lobbying Reform

    sims 020620SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Rep. Greg Harris and Sen. Elgie Sims – co-chairs of the Joint Commission on Ethics and Lobbying Reform – released the following statement Tuesday regarding ongoing efforts to enact meaningful ethics reform in Illinois:

    “The COVID-19 pandemic has necessitated that we all put the health and safety of our state and our communities first. The Joint Commission on Ethics and Lobbying Reform remains committed to our task of developing recommendations for meaningful reforms to the way lobbyists and elected officials conduct themselves. We have completed our meetings, heard from stakeholders and are working through the proposals that have been put before us.

  • Murphy: Blagojevich release signals that ethics reform is needed at all levels of government

    murphy 041019SPRINGFIELD – In response to news that President Donald Trump has commuted the prison sentence of former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, State Senator Laura Murphy (D-Des Plaines) issued the following statement:

    “I am disappointed and troubled by former Gov. Blagojevich’s early release. His crime remains a prime example of the kind of corrupt behavior we should be working to eradicate, and the commutation of his sentence signals that the federal government isn’t serious about ethics reform.

    “Here in Illinois, I’m working with my fellow lawmakers to restore the public’s trust in government, and I worry that Illinoisans will see this news as a step back.

    “But I am still committed to eliminating corruption and greed at all levels of government. Despite today’s frustration, I will continue my efforts to change the corrupt culture in Springfield and hold bad actors accountable for their actions. It’s time to follow through on our promises and demand ethical behavior from our elected officials.”

  • Bush disappointed by president’s actions, urges passage of ethics reform package

    Sen. Melinda BushSPRINGFIELD – State Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake) released the following statement in response to President Trump commuting ex-Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich’s sentence:

    “I’m deeply disappointed by President Trump’s move to commute the sentence of Rod Blagojevich. Illinois’ troubling history of corruption is no secret, and Mr. Blagojevich’s attempt to sell a U.S. Senate seat is the epitome of corruption. The president’s own Republican advisors have warned him that Mr. Blagojevich is guilty of corruption, which the president vowed to fight once in office. His actions today are simply incomprehensible. Illinois has a long way to go to clean up its act, and we can start by passing my new package of ethics reform legislation.”

    The package of legislation contains three bills: Senate Bills 2488, 1426, and 74. Each targets a different loophole in the ethics code and would give more investigative power to the Legislative Inspector General.

  • Bush targets corruption with legislative package giving more power to ethics commission

    bush 020720GRAYSLAKE – 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.”

  • Commission works to close any possible loopholes in ethics code

    sims 020620

  • Ethics Commission Seeks More Accountability for Legislative Wrongdoers

    sims 013020

    SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — Members of the Joint Commission on Ethics and Lobbying Reform sought input on what could have been done to prevent recent high-profile conflicts of interest and what more must be done to hold lawmakers accountable at a hearing Thursday. 

    “We’re here to make systemic change, close loopholes, and root out opportunities for corrupt behavior that have been identified in recent media reports and investigations,” said state Rep. Greg Harris, who co-chairs the commission. “Yesterday, the governor talked about restoring public trust and cleaning up government. He specifically talked about dealing with disclosures of conflicts of interest, revolving door laws, and limitations on lobbying. Looking around the room as the governor talked, I was happy to see he got a rousing ovation for these three items. From the House, from the Senate, from Democrats, from Republicans. That’s a very good sign for our work. But these proposals are only as good as their details, and it is our job to fill in those details.”