05192017CM0079SPRINGFIELD – Senator Cristina Castro (D-Elgin) voted Wednesday to hit the reset button on the Illinois Toll Highway Authority Board and give the next governor the chance to increase transparency and ethics.  

“The hiring and spending at the tollway has been disturbing. It was time to fumigate the board and start over,” Castro said.

Multiple investigations done by the Daily Herald found that there was likely unethical behavior going on within the Illinois Toll Highway Authority involving political favoritism regarding its hiring practices and contracts.

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CUB

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864ELGIN State Senator Cristina Castro (D-Elgin) released the following statement regarding the unanimous decision by the Legislative Ethics Commission to appoint Carol Pope as the legislative inspector general:

“I am confident that Judge Pope will fulfill her duties and meet our expectations as the legislative inspector general. She will bring her experience and knowledge to our commission and help us move forward and become stronger.”

Castro, who was appointed to the Legislative Ethics Commission in November 2017, commended current Legislative Inspector General Julie Porter for the work she’s done.

“Julie Porter has done a fantastic job and has helped us greatly in getting this commission’s feet off the ground. I want to thank her for her competence and determination thus far serving as our current legislative inspector general.

“I believe that with the help of Judge Pope, we will ensure that we hold people accountable when they need to be and protect those who need it.”

Pope’s appointment will go into effect March 1, 2019, and will serve through June 30, 2023.

Porter will continue to serve in that capacity until Feb. 28, 2019.

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SHELGIN – A new state law that goes into effect Jan. 1, 2019, will give children in foster care and under supervision of the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) the opportunity to go to college, thanks to Elgin Democrat State Senator Cristina Castro.

“Kids in foster care are less likely to attend college,” said Castro. “This affects their futures, including their income levels and employment stability. I don’t want there to be barriers for these kids who are in situations that they had no control over.”

The law will allow certain youth from DCFS, who file for FAFSA and do not receive a DCFS fee waiver, to have the opportunity to receive a scholarship. The scholarship will cover the remaining tuition and fees for any public institution of higher learning in Illinois.

“This law will give kids from DCFS the tools to be successful,” said Castro. “They will then go out and contribute to our economy and make the job market stronger in our state. Their talents and dreams shouldn’t be limited.”

House Bill 5122 passed the Senate and House with bipartisan support.

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