Oversight group praises 'big dogs' protecting taxpayers in Illinois
Better Government Association (BGA) CEO Andy Shaw threw a bone to four government watchdogs recently whom he said have proven their dedication to moving Chicago away from politics as usual and toward good government.
“In a state where too many appointed government watchdogs resemble lapdogs — inspectors, auditors and regulators who whimper and nip instead of barking and biting — Chicago, of all places, has assembled and empowered an impressive group of attack dogs who go after clout, cronyism, misconduct and waste with a ferocity good government groups are applauding,” Shaw wrote in an article on the BGA website.
Shaw tipped his hat to City of Chicago Inspector General Joe Ferguson, whom he said has taken on the City Council and worked to uncover bad workers and inefficient programs. He also recognized Ferguson’s counterpart in Chicago Public Schools, Nicohlas Schuler, whom Shaw said has made it clear that he will go after both top-level and rank-and-file employees acting improperly.
Chicago's Police Board Chair Lori Lightfoot and Ethics Board Chair Bill Conlon also earned plaudits from Shaw. Lightfoot’s board oversaw the firing, suspension or forced removal of 15 police officers brought up on misconduct charges -- a marked difference from previous years, Shaw said, while Conlon has gone after special interest representatives like former Uber executive David Plouffe, whom Conlon hit with a $90,000 fine.
“We need to unleash a similar breed of independent, reasonably empowered attack dogs to roam the halls of the Capitol in Springfield if we're ever going to reform state government,” Shaw said.
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