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updated: 4/28/2016 10:39 PM

State Sen. Bush: Rauner delaying my government consolidation efforts

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  • State Sens. Melinda Bush, left, and Julie Morrison introduced legislation to merge township governments and road districts. Bush plans to lead a working group on government consolidation in Lake County, but is awaiting the governor's approval on some members of the group.

      State Sens. Melinda Bush, left, and Julie Morrison introduced legislation to merge township governments and road districts. Bush plans to lead a working group on government consolidation in Lake County, but is awaiting the governor's approval on some members of the group.
    Gilbert R. Boucher II | Staff Photographer

 
By Mary Hansen
mhansen@dailyherald.com

Local government consolidation is a cornerstone of Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner's Turnaround Agenda, but one Democratic lawmaker says her attempts to collaborate with him aren't getting much of a response.

State Sen. Melinda Bush, of Grayslake, sponsored a measure to establish the Working Group on Government Consolidation in Lake County last year.

The group, which would consist of township and county officials among others appointed by the governor, is tasked with exploring how to combine units of government in a county that has more townships than DuPage County.

But Bush says she's been waiting for weeks for Rauner to appoint some members to the group.

"The names (of appointees) are submitted, the resumes are in. We have done our job," Bush said. "We are waiting for the governor to make those appointments and looking forward to working with him on it."

The governor's office did not respond to a request for comment.

Lt. Gov. Evelyn Sanguinetti led a statewide task force on government consolidation, highlighting the work by DuPage County Chairman Dan Cronin's efforts. DuPage has been lauded as a model, and the House passed legislation in April that would extend the power given to DuPage to combine smaller taxing districts to every county in the state.

Meanwhile, the Senate passed a measure sponsored by Bush that would allow townships to dissolve with a referendum vote and another, sponsored by state Sen. Tom Cullerton of Villa Park, that would help answer the question of just how many units of local government there are in the state.

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