Rep. Lou Lang Backs Quinn Choice of Bob Flider as Illinois Agriculture Director

(Skokie, IL) ­– Governor Pat Quinn today named former State Representative Bob Flider (D-Decatur) as Director of the Illinois Department of Agriculture, drawing praise from a top Illinois House lawmaker.

“Throughout his career, Bob Flider was a tireless, effective leader for rural farming communities and global agri-business leaders,” said Quinn. “He served his district with distinction, and I am pleased he will continue to serve all the people of our state.”

From 2003 to 2011, Flider served in the Illinois House of Representatives, sitting on the House Agriculture & Conservation Committee, the Energy & Environment Committee and the Ethanol Production Oversight Committee.

Quinn’s appointment of Flider won the backing of Illinois House Deputy Majority Leader Lou Lang (D-Skokie).

“Bob is both a friend and a respected voice on Illinois agriculture issues,” said Lang. “Governor Quinn’s choice of Bob as Illinois Agriculture Director is an excellent decision.”

In addition to Lang, the head of the Illinois Farm Bureau also praised Flider as the next Illinois agriculture chief.

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Lang Says Quinn Tax Proposals Need More Detail

House Deputy Majority Leader Lou Lang (D-Skokie) and Gov. Pat Quinn.

(Skokie, IL) – Gov. Pat Quinn advocated last week in his State of the State speech for both an end to the Illinois natural gas tax and the creation of a new tax credit for parents with children, drawing cautious support from Illinois House Deputy Majority Leader Lou Lang (D-Skokie).

“We have to analyze each of the items the governor is talking about and determine how we will pay for the initiatives and what is the potential return on the state’s investment,” Lang said. “And where there is a net gain for the state treasury, we should do it.”

The Quinn administration said the initiatives would cost approximately $294 million. Ending the gas tax would cost the state treasury $164 million and creating the child tax credit would cost $130 million. Quinn also proposed a veteran employment tax credit that would cost $5 million to $10 million.

Quinn’s office said the child tax credit could save $100 a year for the average family of four.

The governor touched lightly on the state’s top financial challenges around growing pension and Medicaid costs, but outlined no policy prescriptions.

“In many ways, the speech was incomplete,” said Lang. “There were some critical budget issues on which he could have talked, but did not. He talked about Medicaid reform and pension reform, but posed no solutions.”

Lang hopes Quinn will provide detailed proposals during his budget address to the lawmakers on February 22.

“The legislature will need concrete, detailed and realistic budget proposals from the governor on February 22,” Lang added. “It will be a day of budget reckoning.”