Illinois's 44 regional superintendents have decided not to appeal a court ruling that upheld Gov. Pat Quinn's right to cut funding for their salaries from the current state budget.
A Sangamon County judge ruled in August that Quinn properly used his line-item veto power when he eliminated the salaries of regional superintendents, but kept the funding for the offices. The superintendents, who are elected locally, certify teachers, run truancy programs and do background checks. Many kept working without pay. Others retired.
Quinn has called them unnecessary bureaucrats, and says counties and other local governments should come up with the funding if they want to keep the positions.
In a statement released today, Bob Daiber, the Madison County regional superintendent and the president of the Illinois Association of Regional Superintendents of Schools said his members were "not dissuaded in our believe that this is an unfair situation and should not continue. However, we respect the court's decision and believe it's time now to focus on the next step."
"Our members are working right now to educate legislators about all the services we provide and good work we do for our school system and taxpayers. We are building the support necessary for a responsible solution that restores our state funding. Even as the personal hardships grow without receiving a paycheck, regional superintendents are resolved to both follow through on the duties we were elected to perform and show our value to legislators, who will be asked to stand with us in the upcoming fall veto session."
Click here to listen to Maria Altman's piece for Weekend All Things Considered on the funding dispute.