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
  630-690-4500 217/782-8022   217.235.6033 217.782.6674
  http://www.peterroskam.com/contact.html   drighter@consolidated.net

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.

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