UPDATED 08/26/11 1:10 p.m.

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (CBS) — A downstate circuit court judge has upheld Gov. Pat Quinn’s authority to eliminate salaries for regional school superintendents across Illinois.

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As WBBM Newsradio’s Mike Krauser reports, Sangamon County Judge John Schmidt on Friday said the governor has “broad power” to control state spending, and said it would be wrong to “thrust the court into the appropriations process.”

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Mike Krauser reports

At issue is $10 million in pay for 44 elected regional superintendents and about 40 assistants, who have been working without pay since July 1.

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Their duties include certifying teachers, doing background checks and running truancy programs. But Quinn has called them unnecessary bureaucrats.

They are also in charge of providing initial training and refresher courses for school bus drivers, as well as background checks. On Wednesday, the superintendents brought out school buses, a local transportation director, and a newly trained driver to warn the public that bus driver training falls only under their jurisdiction and could be jeopardized.

The superintendents issued a statement Friday, saying they are disappointed. They say the situation is unfair, and the governor’s decision inconsiderate.

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Hardships, they say, are growing every day they go without pay, and that they continue to work hard while their fight continues.