GOVERNOR TO END JOBS PROGRAM
Also during the week, Governor Pat Quinn announced he will end his “Put Illinois to Work” temporary jobs program in the middle of January.
The program initially received $215 million in federal funding, and Quinn has added $122 million in state funds since September. Data from the Department of Human Services, as reported by the Chicago Tribune, show 26,000 people got $10-an-hour jobs under the program, but fewer than 10 percent of them obtained full-time positions.
We do not question the program’s intent, but instead its overall effectiveness in helping place Illinois’ unemployed in permanent jobs.
Governor Quinn has said that his new focus will be on moving legislation that provides better incentive for businesses to hire new workers – which has been my focus for many years.
ILLINOIS COUNTIES ON 'JUDICIAL HELLHOLE' LISTS
A new report released during the week indicates Illinois is still a problem state for lawsuit abuse, with Cook County called a “magnet for plaintiffs.” The report ranks the state’s most populated county as the nation’s fifth-worst “Judicial Hellhole.”
The 2010 “Judicial Hellholes” report, issued by the American Tort Reform Association, examines courts and legal systems across the country to find the places where the courts are most abused, unfair and targeted by aggressive personal injury lawyers.
The report states that the “folks running Cook County’s court system have little desire to curb the filing of questionable lawsuits, show restraint in awarding damages, or otherwise heed calls for reform. Litigation there, after all, is a booming business for both plaintiffs’ attorneys and the courts.”
Madison, St. Clair and McLean Counties are listed on the Judicial Hellhole Watch List as potential problems. Madison County is ranked #1 nationally while St. Clair and McLean Counties made the list this year.
For more information on the “Judicial Hellholes” report and the I-LAW report, visit http://www.ILLawsuitAbuseWatch.org.