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State Inspector General May Oversee Mass Transit

Metra locomotive (CBS File Photo)

Metra locomotive (CBS File Photo)

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (CBS) - The top watchdog in the state of Illinois could soon be charged with the additional task of overseeing all four Chicago mass transit associations.

A bill is expected to be introduced to lawmakers in Springfield this week that would give the state Inspector General’s office the additional authority.

The Chicago Tribune reports that under the bill, the state office would investigate corruption, fraud and waste at Metra, Pace, the Regional Transportation Authority, and oversee the Chicago Transit Authority’s current inspector general.

State Sen. Susan Garrett (D-Lake Forest) wrote the bill.

It was motivated by revelations earlier this year that former Metra Executive Director Phil Pagano improperly took $475,000 in vacation pay over the course of 11 years, after forging the signature of Metra chairwoman Carole Doris.

Pagano committed suicide by stepping in front of Metra train in Crystal Lake last May.

(TM and © Copyright 2010 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS Radio and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)