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Article updated: 10/18/2013 7:37 AM

Illinois suspends funding of charter school group

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By Associated Press

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn has again suspended state funding to the United Neighborhood Organization, the state's biggest charter-school operator.

Quinn spokeswoman Sandra M. Jones told the Chicago Sun-Times the final $15 million of a $98 million state school-construction grant the Illinois Legislature promised UNO in 2009 is being withheld.

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Quinn previously suspended funding for UNO in April, after reports the organization gave $8.5 million of business to companies owned by the brothers of then UNO executive Miquel d'Escoto.

Thursday's disclosure came a day after UNO disclosed the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating the group.

In addition to state funds, the organization receives millions of dollars annually from Chicago Public Schools to operate its schools.

UNO has received $37.5 million from Wall Street interests though state-approved bonds.

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