IDOT cuts 58 positions following criticism of hiring practices

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CHICAGO - Fifty-eight positions that are at the center of a lawsuit alleging questionable hiring practices are being eliminated by the Illinois Department of Transportation.

According to a 2013 Better Government Association report, Governor Pat Quinn and his predecessor Rod Blagojevich hired as many as 200 "staff assistants" without offering the jobs to the general public and without adhering to rules that prohibit political considerations.

In 2014, a federal lawsuit seeking an investigation into employment practices was filed by an anti-patronage attorney.  The lawsuit also seeks an independent monitor to oversee employment practices at the department.

In addition to the 58 cut positions, the department is continuing a freeze on hiring for positions that can be filled based on political connections and creating a board to evaluate hiring.

On Thursday, acting Secretary Erica Borggren said the cuts are designed to increase "accountability and restore public trust."
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