Magistrate Judge Sidney Schenkier told attorneys Wednesday that the monitor would help compliance of a decades-old political hiring ban.
Gov. Pat Quinn has asked a judge to reject anti-patronage attorney Michael Shakman’s request for a federal hiring monitor, arguing the action would be detrimental to state officials’ duties. Shakman said that was a “straw man” argument.
The Chicago Democrat’s actions, which also included ordering an outside audit of past IDOT hires, come amid questions about whether state jobs were improperly filled based on clout rather than qualifications.
A U.S. district judge has agreed to lift federal oversight of whether Chicago hiring practices are corrupted by political favoritism.
The topic came up at a status hearing in a civil case in front of the U.S. District Court in Chicago. Attorney Michael Shakman asked in a motion last week for an investigation into Quinn’s hiring practices.
Questions about alleged patronage hiring violations at the Illinois Department of Transportation have become a flashpoint in the race for governor.
Taxi companies and drivers have sued the city of Chicago, claiming newly proposed regulations for competing ride-sharing companies don’t go far enough, and alleging the city has allowed an “unlawful taxi caste system” to emerge.
A lawyer representing former Metra CEO Alex Clifford says his client would like to return to work at the embattled suburban Chicago transit agency.
Ex-Metra CEO Alex Clifford will testify to the Regional Transportation Authority about how House Speaker Michael Madigan asked him to raise the pay of a Madigan campaign worker and to hire another friend of the powerful Southwest Side Democrat.