Report: Suburbs spending more on lobbying
SPRINGFIELD -- Local officials are spending more tax money to pay for lobbyists in Springfield, the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform reported Thursday.
The report examined lobbying contracts from governments throughout the state from July 2009 through June 2010, showing an increase in lobbying spending of $845,000 over the previous report.
The biggest spender was the Regional Transportation Authority and its boards -- CTA, Metra and Pace -- which spent more than $1 million in the year lobbying lawmakers, the governor and other state officials.
ICPR officials obtained the lobbying contracts through the Freedom of Information Act, but the law doesn't require making available the lobbying contracts of private companies who have a big stake in swaying government decisions.
"The information gathered in this survey gives the public a better picture of how public dollars are used to monitor and lobby state government," said ICPR deputy Director David Morrison, "but state lobbying regulations reveal next to nothing about much larger lobbying budgets of corporations, unions and others with lobbyists in Springfield."
Here's what suburban governments spent on lobbying in Springfield from July 2009 through June 2010.
Village of Addison: $25,000
Village of Antioch: $49,000
Aurora Civic Center Authority: $3,193
City of Aurora: $91,000
Village of Bartlett: $24,000
Village of Bolingbrook: $36,000
College of Lake County: $35,175
Cook County Board: $65,000
Cook County Clerk: $50,063
City of Des Plaines: $60,000
Village of Downers Grove: $27,000
DuPage County: $145,833
DuPage County Election Commission: $39,000
DuPage County Forest Preserve: $15,000
DuPage County Health Department: $96,000
DuPage County State's Attorney: $43,000
City of Elgin: $36,666
Village of Glendale Heights: $36,500
Hanover Park Park District: $10,000
Harper College: $72,500
Village of Hoffman Estates: $60,000
Village of Huntley: $60,242
Illinois State Toll Highway Authority: $82,000
Village of Johnsburg: $8,000
Kane County: $54,583
Kane County Forest Preserve District: $12,000
Village of Lake Barrington: $24,000
Lake County: $47,114
Village of Lombard: $48,000
Village of Long Grove: $18,000
City of Naperville: $60,000
Regional Transportation Authority: $191,751
Schaumburg Township Highway Department: $18,000
Solid Waste Agency of Lake County; $33,000
Solid Waste Agency of Northern Cook County: $10,000
University Center of Lake County: $24,000
Village of Vernon Hills: $48,000
City of West Chicago: $54,000
West Cook County Solid Waste Agency: $24,000
Wheaton Park District: $48,000
Will County: $56,500
City of Zion: $4,833