State Representative Blaine Wilhour (R-Beecher City) is calling for the legislature to be called into emergency session to take up the many pieces of legislation on ethics reform that he has filed. In light of the most recent revelation today by the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) Commonwealth Edison (ComEd) acted in an illegal scheme with lobbyists to influence “Elected Official A” (presumed in media reports to be Speaker Michael J. Madigan), the time is now to get in front of this scandal to ensure the integrity of the Illinois House.
“Now we know for sure why my proposed legislation has been held up in the Rules Committee by the Speaker and has not received even a public hearing for an up or down vote,” said Rep. Wilhour. “I have talked about the corruption tax on Illinois residents my entire time in the General Assembly and this corruption tax bill is too high for us to keep paying.”
Earlier this year, Speaker Madigan’s own state senator, Martin Sandoval, pleaded guilty to corruption charges associated with the red-light camera bribery and tax fraud scandal. Sandoval, then chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee, took $250,000 in bribes from SafeSpeed LLC as the red-light traffic camera company’s protector in the Senate and to help ensure the company was able to install red-light traffic cameras in Chicago suburbs and was the force behind doubling the state gas tax and putting it on automatic increases.
According to reports today Commonwealth Edison stated that it has steered jobs, contracts and payments to people connected to ‘Public Official A,’ who’s later referred to as the Illinois House speaker in a highly explosive court filing released this morning. As of this afternoon, Speaker Michael J. Madigan has not been charged with wrongdoing.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Chicago had been investigating whether ComEd hired politically connected contractors – some with ties to Madigan – in order to win favorable government actions, including electricity rate increases.
“I have a package of ethics bills that should be taken up during a special session on ethics reform that deal with the State Officials and Employees Ethics Act, the Lobbyist Registration Act, and the Illinois Government Ethics Act,” added Rep. Wilhour.