DCEO privatization measure heard on House floor

From Illinois News Network
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A proposed private-public partnership outside of the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity to spur on economic development got a significant facelift before lawmakers in the House voted for the measure.

Democratic majorities voted in favor of a slew of amendments they say includes transparency, addresses Governor appointments and measures to address conflicts of interest.

Last week, DCEO Director Jim Schultz said he didn’t support a sunset but if there were to be one it should be no less than ten years.

Republican Representative Keith Wheeler said a three-year sunset would breed doubt for possible private investments meant to help the organization spur on economic development.

“If you only have a three-year sunset and I’m a corporation I may look at this and say ‘that may not be enough time, they’re not gonna be serious about this, consequently I’m not going to invest.’ We’re going to hamper the concept of what this could actually be.”

Sponsor of the amendments Barbara Flynn Currie said the sunset allows for the legislature to review the private-public partnership.

“Better for the legislature to be on notice that it has to make a decision whether to continue and if so for how long or whether to cancel a program that is this new and has experienced so many problems in other states.”

The measure passed with a simple majority.

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