SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — The state’s top ethics investigator says the Illinois Department of Transportation improperly hired more than 250 employees in the past decade.
Executive Inspector General Ricardo Meza’s report says the practice began in 2003 but continued under Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn.
Meza says IDOT circumvented hiring rules meant to ensure people are hired on merit, not on political clout. He says the agency’s practice of hiring “staff assistants” to do jobs that should be protected from political influence denied those job opportunities to countless qualified candidates on the basis of merit.
Meza’s report was posted on a state government website Friday. Quinn’s office announced Thursday that IDOT would lay off the 58 current staff assistants and make other reforms.
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