54th District Republican State Senator Jason Plummer has filed legislation that severely curtails the ability of lawmakers and staff of the Illinois General Assembly from having ownership in, or being compensated by, the gaming industry while in office.
Senate Bill 2318, filed by Senator Plummer on Monday, is part of a package of ethics bills Plummer has worked on to address some of the serious conflicts of interest that presently can exist between lawmakers and industries over which they hold significant influence.
Plummer says if the average Illinois citizen knew their elected officials were making laws to create and expand protected industries from which they are themselves earning money, they would be disgusted. But Plummer says that’s what happening and it needs to stop, immediately.
“If we’re going to restore the trust of the people of Illinois in their state government we have to make sure strong and independent voices exist to represent the reform measures that, while maybe not popular among the political class, are common sense and necessary to fix our broken system,” Plummer said.
SB 2318 would specifically bar members of the General Assembly and their immediate family, as well as the staff of the General Assembly and their immediate family, from holding an ownership interest in a privately held gaming enterprise or business. It will also bar the same groups of people from holding anything more than a passive interest in any publicly traded gaming enterprise. In addition, the legislation would bar members and staff of the General Assembly and the immediate families of both groups from receiving any form of compensation for services rendered to or employment with any gaming enterprise or business.
“Illinoisans know right and wrong. Their lawmakers should know right and wrong, too,” said Plummer. “In a perfect world, politicians wouldn’t use their positions to profiteer, but Illinois, as we all know, is not a perfect world. Significant ethics reform is badly needed in Springfield and I look forward to working with legislators from across the state and across the political spectrum to address these violations of the public trust and restore confidence in our state government.”