Because Governor Pat Quinn of Chicago called the Illinois Senate back into session using a special session, rather than allowing the senate president to call a day of regular session, state lawmakers are receiving a $111 travel reimbursement. State Senator Gary Forby is donating his to Pat’s Kids charity.
“This is just another example of Governor Quinn wasting state resources to score points in the media,” Forby said. “If we need to come to Springfield, we will. The fact that he insisted on a special session means the state is wasting thousands of dollars.”
The governor called the General Assembly back to Springfield to deal with Illinois’ unfunded pension liability. Senator Forby understands the need for pension reform, but believes that the state needs to give more serious consideration to some of the suggestions made by teachers, prison guards, and other state workers.
“I think teachers and other state workers have made some very reasonable requests—like requiring the state to make its pension payment each year and allowing workers to sue if it doesn’t,” Forby explained. “If the state had made its full payment every year, like the workers have, there wouldn’t be any pension debt.”
Forby is donating his unneeded travel reimbursement to Pat’s Kids, a charity that uses every cent of its proceeds to ensure that physically and sexually abused children in Southern Illinois get a visit from Santa. Forby has donated more than $30,000 to the local charity over the past four years.
“These kids need the money more than I do,” Forby said. “But it would be better if the state weren’t spending it in the first place.”