HEADLINES : Illinois

Other Ill. officials cool to Quinn's call for cuts

CBSNews.comFebruary 29, 2012

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - Illinois statewide officials, particularly Democrats, are giving a cool response to Gov. Pat Quinn's call for them to share the pain of the state's financial troubles by cutting their budgets 9 percent.

None of the independent constitutional officials - attorney general, secretary of state, comptroller and treasurer - has flatly rejected the Democratic governor. But some of them come close.

Both Secretary of State Jesse White and Attorney General Lisa Madigan say their top priority is making sure the operations of their offices aren't harmed seriously. Aides to the two Democrats said they're still "crunching the numbers" to see how close they can get to Quinn's 9 percent target.

A third Democratic official, Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon, embraced Quinn's target and proposed cutting her tiny office's budget by nearly $200,000. But she is essentially a part of the Quinn administration. It would have been remarkable if she hadn't followed his lead.

As for the Republicans, neither Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka nor Treasurer Dan Rutherford committed to hitting the governor's 9 percent target, but aides said they would try.

Quinn, visiting a school in the Chicago suburbs Tuesday, said every dollar that other officials cut from their budgets is money that can be spent on other important needs.


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