Rauner has yet to respond to lawmakers' request for Quincy veterans home plan
Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner has yet to respond to a letter from a bipartisan group of Springfield lawmakers calling for him to release his plan for a new facility at the Illinois Veterans Home in Quincy.
However, the governor still has a few days.
"Gov. Rauner needs to provide us with a detailed plan by this Friday," state Rep. David McSweeney (R-Barrington Hills) told the Lake County Gazette.
McSweeney represents the 52nd House District, which includes Cook, Lake, McHenry and Kane counties.
McSweeney is one of four legislators from the Illinois State House and Senate who issued a letter to the governor earlier this week, calling on Rauner's office to provide draft legislation to expedite the process at the home, and to provide "complete and accurate details about your proposed plan." Other lawmakers who signed the letters were: Rep. Linda Chapa LaVia (D-Aurora) of House District 83; Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago), who represents of District 23; and Sen. Sam McCann (R-Jacksonville), of District 50.
House District 83 includes Kane County, Senate. District 23 includes Cook and DuPage counties; and Senate District 50 includes all of Calhoun, Greene, Morgan, Pike and Scott counties, along with parts of Jersey, Macoupin, Madison and Sangamon counties.
Rauner is seeking a second term in November's General Election after a narrow victory in the Republican Primary in March, during which he barely overcame a gubernatorial challenge from state Rep. Jeanne Ives (R-Wheaton), who represents the 42nd House District. That district covers DuPage County.
In March, the governor's office released some information about a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention-backed remediation effort at the veterans home, which included plans under development for "a new state-of-the-art facility on the Quincy campus."
"We are committed to protecting our heroes and making sure they have a safe place to live," Rauner was quoted in the March announcement as saying. "We have implemented the recommendations the CDC has offered and more. Our teams continue to work with them to identify solutions and put measures in place that keep our veterans healthy."
There has been little else mentioned since and the letter's signatories say it's time for the governor to reveal his plan.
"The time for action is now," McSweeney said during his Lake County Gazette interview.
The General Assembly is ready for the governor's plan, according to the letter.
"Legislators and their respective staff are ready and willing to draft legislation to expedite the process to ensure the safety and well-being of our Quincy residents," the letter said.
"To accomplish this task, we need cooperation from you and your staff, as well as complete and accurate details about your proposed plan. Specifically, we request a list of any applicable laws or rules that need to be temporarily amended in order to handle this matter, including but not limited to those pertaining to procurement or the Capitol Development Board."
The letter also asked Rauner to reach out to President Donald Trump "to ensure the Illinois Veterans Home at Quincy receives expedited federal assistance to complete all construction and improvements on its campus."
McSweeney admitted to the Lake County Gazette, however, that Illinois' governor may not take the letter very seriously.
"We need to immediately build a new facility for our veterans in Quincy," McSweeney said. "I'm not sure that Gov. Rauner listens to anyone."