A potential candidate for governor hopes four Illinois correctional facilities stay open. The Illinois House is expected to vote this week on an override of the governor’s veto of funding for the prisons at Dwight and Tamms, and juvenile facilities at Murphysboro and Joliet. State Treasurer Dan Rutherford wants to see that happen.
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“I think it’s appropriate for the governor’s veto of the appropriation to be overridden by the House, yes, because then it leaves it in his administration’s decision as to whether they will go ahead and use those dollars for what the [general] assembly wanted it for and what the Illinois state treasurer believes is better for public safety,” he said.
Gov. Pat Quinn disagrees. “We think the Legislature needs to sustain my veto and hopefully we can move forward with saving money for taxpayers,” he said. He notes that the populations of Tamms, Dwight and the Joliet Youth Center are low, and nobody is incarcerated at Murphysboro.
The governor wishes to save money from the Department of Corrections and re-allocate it to the Department of Children and Family Services. The amount at issue is $55 million. The Illinois Senate overrode the veto last week.
If the House votes to override this week, the governor still would not be compelled to keep the prisons open, but he would be barred from using the money for other purposes.