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Special Sessions Cost Illinoisans Nearly $260,000

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By AP/KWMU

Springfield, Ill – Illinois lawmawkers collected nearly $260,000 in expenses during a special session devoted to solving the state budget crisis.

Governor Rod Blagojevich ordered the special session. As a result, lawmakers were entitled to $95 per day for their expenses.

Most lawmakers accepted the expense money. A handful returned it to the state, and some say they donated it to charity.

House Speaker Michael Madigan often complained that Blagojevich was wasting money by holding a special session.

But Blagojevich spokeswoman Rebecca Rausch says the governor feels it was worth the money to keep lawmakers in Springfield during budget negotiations. She says it helped produce a better final budget.

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