The Illinois Senate has rejected the appointment of three new members to the Board of Trustees at Southern Illinois University, at least for now. State Senator Bill Haine of Alton urged the governor to provide background information on the proposed appointees so senators could be fully informed before they vote. The appointments will now go before the Executive Appointment Committee for consideration.
The vote yesterday was zero to 23, with 32 senators voting present on the appointments of Sandra Cook of Collinsville, Lee Milner of Springfield and Melvin Terrell of Chicago. The three new people were named this week by Governor Pat Quinn to replace three members who were not retained to the board, Edwardsville School District Superintendent Ed Hightower, Alton attorney John Simmons, and businessman Mark Hinrichs of O'Fallon. In a statement, Senator Haine reminded the governor that the Illinois constitution has clear outlines on appointments and asked that more information about the candidates be submitted for the senate to consider. There has been speculation that the governor chose not to reappoint the three due to recent turmoil revolving around the Roger Herrin snub for reappointment as Chairman of the Board. The governor's office has denied the suggestion and called the senate's action on Wednesday disappointing.