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Area lawmakers push for legislation to prevent elected officials from abusing their power

Syverson says the piece of legislation addresses how to hold accountable any elected officials potentially abusing their power.
Published: Sep. 15, 2021 at 7:06 PM CDT
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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - Recent charges filed against the Winnebago County Coroner inspire area lawmakers to hold elected officials accountable.

State Senator Dave Syverson is one local lawmaker trying to push a bipartisan bill into the Illinois House and Senate.

Syverson says the piece of legislation addresses how to hold accountable any elected officials potentially abusing their power.

“We want to protect the Constitution, protect those people who are duly elected from being a political victim. But in cases where an elected official, is clearly abusing their, their position, then we have to find a way to take them out of those duties,” Syverson says.

Other area lawmakers, like Senator Steve Stadelman, are also on board with this initiative.

“I think it’s something that needs to be explored it kind of sets up an interesting situation, ultimately comes down, you want the public trust your elected office,” Stadelman says.

Because of the charges filed against Winnebago County Coroner Bill Hintz, including official misconduct and misappropriation of funds, area lawmakers agree a bill like this could begin to build back the trust between elected leaders and taxpayers.

Syverson and Stadelman are working with legal experts like Winnebago County State’s Attorney J. Hanley and Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul to make this a statewide possibility.

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