SPRINGFIELD – Taxes, prison safety and electric rates were among the major topics capturing Illinois lawmakers’ attention during the week of March 19-23, even as the Senate continued third-reading action, debating and passing nearly 80 bills to the House of Representatives for further consideration.


Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s $6 billion gross receipts sales tax hike drew criticism from three fellow constitutional officers – all Democrats. The latest is his running mate, Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn, who announced his opposition at a Capitol press conference, saying flatly, "That levy would be passed on to consumers, and I don’t think that’s the right way to go."

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