Gov. Pat Quinn says the increase in jobs free from hiring rules at the Illinois Department of Transportation were "absolutely" necessary.
He told reporters Monday that there were federal stimulus dollars that had to be spent quickly and efficiently, along with a massive capital bill. He says policy makers were needed.
Documents released last week by his office showed an increase of 57 percent from 2003 to 2011. The documents showed that in 2011 there were 369 jobs at IDOT that could be given without restriction to those with political connections. That was up from 234 in 2003.
Attorney Michael Shakman sought the documents as part of a federal complaint alleging improper hiring at IDOT.
Quinn says he ordered an audit last summer and problems are being addressed.