|Senator Peter Roskam Senate Republican Whip||State Senator Dale Righter|
|315 West Wesley Street||309H State House||916 Broadway||M103E State Capitol|
|Wheaton, Illinois 60187||Springfield, Illinois 62706||Mattoon, IL 61938||Springfield, IL 62706|
For Immediate Release
Date: February 8, 2005/acs
Legislators Prevail on FOIA Matter
Springfield –State Senators Dale Righter (R-Mattoon) and Peter Roskam (R-Wheaton) are pleased to announce that Caremark has chosen not to appeal the Cook County Circuit Court’s decision requiring state officials to turn over their $250 million contract with the state of Illinois to the public.
“This should send a clear message to the administration that keeping secrets from the public—our constituents—is not in accordance with the spirit or the letter of the law,” said Senator Righter. “Allowing a vendor and an administrator decide what knowledge the taxpayers are privy to would set a dangerous precedent.”
“I am just pleased to know that the courts supported our perspective on this issue,” explained Roskam. “The day a taxpayer funded contract can be kept confidential to the public will be a dangerous one.”
Blagojevich Administration and Caremark attempted to shield details contained in the contract, claiming it contained a trade secret after Righter and Roskam filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to force disclosure of the tax funded arrangement. The dispute then turned into a court battle.
The decision was made last Friday when a Cook County judge rejected an attempt made by Caremark, a prescription-drug benefit provider, to prohibit Illinois Comptroller Dan Hynes from releasing details of its contract with the state. Judge Mary Anne Mason denied Caremark's motion for a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction. However, Mason also stayed enforcement of the judgment and consequential release of the contract until 5 p.m. today.