Another lawmaker with many state workers in his district has been kicked upstairs. Wayne Rosenthal, a Republican from Morrisonville, is now the director of the Department of Natural Resources. This comes before the General Assembly could potientially take some votes which, under Gov. Bruce Rauner, state workers may not like.
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“I don't think that necessarily plays into it at all,” Rosenthal says. “The fact is, I applied for this position. The simple fact is, I do have the qualifications and the background.”
So what can state employees, particularly those represented by unions, look forward to?
“There's a lot of balls up in the air,” Rosenthal says. “Everybody knows that where we're at is not necessarily where we want to be. The path forward is questionable – (down) which path do you want to go?”
Rosenthal's appointment follows that of another Springfield-area Republican lawmaker, Rich Brauer, who was named assistant secretary of transportation.
While Rauner has touted his love of the outdoors, perhaps someone else with a budget ax could look at, for example, the state park system as expendable. Rosenthal finds the recreational offerings of DNR easy to defend.
“I look at it as quality of life – how can we make Illinois what we want it to be? This is where we live.”
Rosenthal is a farmer and retired brigadier general of the Illinois Air National Guard.