Illinois state Rep. Dan Ugaste (R-Geneva) on the House floor | repugaste.com
Illinois state Rep. Dan Ugaste (R-Geneva) is coming up on a year of service in Springfield, but he's already grown frustrated by some basic inconsistencies.
“People deciding to resign from office shouldn’t be paid for a whole extra month just because they’re there for the first day of it,” Ugaste told the McHenry Times. “You don’t work, you shouldn’t be getting paid for it.”
With two longtime Democratic lawmakers now poised to take advantage of that policy after recently announcing retirement plans amid a cloud of corruption, Ugaste has thrown his support behind House Bill 818 in hopes of closing the legislative loophole.
Illinois state Sen. Martin Sandoval (D-Chicago)
“It only seems the right thing to do,” Ugaste said. “Legislators should only get paid for days they actually are in office and worked.”
Over the last several weeks, Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago) and former Senate Transportation Committee chairman Sen. Martin Sandoval (D-Chicago) have both tendered resignations effective Jan. 1. Over the last decade during which Cullerton has served as Senate President, Sandoval has been part of his leadership team in Springfield.
Sandoval's troubles began earlier this fall when federal agents raided his home and office as part of a widening corruption probe. He eventually stepped down from his position as committee chairman.
“What I’m hoping is that some of the reform bills Republicans have filed will get a fair hearing and a vote,” Ugaste said. “I don’t know if they are everything we need, but they definitely address what’s happening. It’s clear something needs to be done and this would give us a good first step.”
Officials in Sandoval’s 11th District will have 30 days to fill his vacated spot after the resignation becomes official, while the rest of the three-year term will be filled by the winner of an election to be held at the same time as the November 2020 general election.