Witnesses Won't Testify on Anti-Violence Program

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By Associated Press

UPDATED 5:05 p.m. WEDNESDAY, JULY 16, 2014

CHICAGO (AP) - Illinois lawmakers have not decided how to move forward with their investigation of Gov. Pat Quinn's anti-violence program.

Federal prosecutors are also investigating and have asked lawmakers to wait to question those involved with the Neighborhood Recovery Initiative.

The bipartisan Legislative Audit Commission could not agree Wednesday on how long to wait. Two proposals failed before the commission took a short break.

The investigation has been a focus of Republicans looking to tarnish Quinn's image as a reformer who cleaned up state government. A state audit found poor program management and misused money.

Republicans have alleged Quinn used money from the $55 million Neighborhood Recovery Initiative as a political slush fund to secure votes. Quinn has denied that claim.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

 

ORIGINAL STORY

CHICAGO (AP) - Several witnesses subpoenaed by Illinois legislators to testify about Gov. Pat Quinn's troubled anti-violence program are opting not to appear.

The Legislative Audit Commission subpoenaed seven former members of Quinn's administration to testify Wednesday about the now-defunct Neighborhood Recovery Initiative. A state audit concluded the program was poorly managed and misused money.

Federal prosecutors are investigating the $55 million program and want lawmakers to hold off on the subpoenas. Republicans want to proceed.

Legislators haven't yet voted on whether to call the witnesses. But lawyers for six of the witnesses told legislators Wednesday their clients won't appear. They say it's in deference to federal prosecutors' request.

The seventh witness, former Quinn adviser Billy Ocasio, has appeared but tells the commission he's "not ready" to testify.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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