Reporting Bob Roberts
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CHICAGO (CBS) — Gov. Pat Quinn called legislative leaders to his Thompson Center office Wednesday, and gave them till Friday to agree on a plan that he said would avoid a shutdown of state construction projects.
WBBM Newsradio 780′s Bob Roberts reports that Republican and Democratic leaders met with Quinn for 90 minutes. A spokesperson for the governor said Quinn laid out specifics. He wants a one year infrastructure bill, not a six-month bill, and said Senate Democrats must strip away the $430 million in other spending that they added in May to the bill, which the House refused to accept.
LISTEN: Newsradio 780′s Bob Roberts reports
House Republican leader Christine Radogno (R-Lemont) and Quinn spokesperson Mica Matsoff said each of the leaders will report back to Quinn after caucusing with members. Matsoff said that Quinn then will either order the shutdown, if no agreement is reached, or call a special legislative session, if everyone is on board.
Neither Quinn nor Democratic leaders spoke with reporters. Radogno is worried about the prospect of a work shutdown.
“I do believe it’s a real crisis, and that there is a potential to disrupt the road projects and lay off a number of people and lose a lot of money,” she said.
She speaks of federal matching money. The shut down would affect more than road construction. It also would affect construction work on public schools, at state colleges and universities and on Chicago-area mass transit lines.
Matsoff said Friday is the deadline, because if no agreement is reached the phased shutdown must begin Monday to assure that all necessary safety precautions are taken, especially with the busy July 4 holiday travel period at hand.