Quinn signs appropriations bill, appoints new DONR chief


Governor Pat Quinn signed an appropriations bill Thursday to secure federal funds he also named a new chief for the Department of Natural Resources.

By signing Senate bill 1132, Governor Quinn returned more than $9-million to several state funds controlled by the Department of Natural Resources. Those funds were transferred by former Governor Blagojevich, a move which jeopardized more than $15-million in funds from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 

In a marked change of style from the previous administration, Governor Quinn signed the bill in front of reporters before announcing the appointment of Marc Miller as the new Director of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.        

"He canoes, he likes to go on kayaks, he is a birdwatcher, a star-gazer, you name it when it comes to wildlife, he knows all about it," Quinn said. "He's a natural resource professional and I think that's exactly what we need in our Department of Natural Resources in the state of Illinois."

Thirty-nine-year-old, Miller has worked with Quinn for years and most recently served as Quinn's senior policy advisor.  

The Senate bill is also good news for other departments. It restores money to offices of the Secretary of State, the Attorney General and Treasurer. Their budgets were slashed by double-digit percentages by the former governor last summer.            

Governor Quinn says he's planning to re-open state parks and historical sites shut down by the Blagojevich administration, but he didn't say when. 

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