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Illinois Treasurer And Comptroller Disagree On Whether To Combine Offices

Illinois Treasurer Michael Frerichs says he continues to support combining the treasurer and comptroller’s offices.

It’s an idea that has come up frequently in recent years and would save the state an estimated $12 million per year.

Frerichs, a Champaign Democrat, says there are sufficient controls in place to prevent the type of embezzlement that took place by Auditor of Public Accounts Orville Hodge in the 1950’s.

“You need strong internal controls, but I don’t think you necessarily need to have two distinct offices. Some of the incompatible responsibilities can be delegated to the governor’s office, or the secretary of state’s office, or the auditor general’s office. You can reduce some of the overhead,” Frerichs said.

The newly-elected comptroller, fellow Democrat Susana Mendoza, opposes combining the two offices; she says during her campaign, the comptroller’s office provides necessary checks and balances to the treasurer’s office.

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